Turmeric offers new hope for lupus victims

Filed in: Healing Foods, Nourish.

Did you know …

… the turmeric spice shows promise as a treatment for lupus and its associated symptoms?

If you or someone you know suffers from lupus, you know how incredibly miserable this autoimmune disease can be. Lupus causes the immune system to attack the tissues and organs of the body. This chronic inflammatory disorder affects the joints, skin, kidneys, blood cells, brain, heart and lungs, and seeks destruction in the heart of the nucleus of cells and damages the DNA and organs in the process.

That's why it's so exciting that turmeric, which is already so valued for its role in natural medicine, can offer hope to people with lupus, most of whom are women.

Turmeric powder in spoon and roots on wooden plate.

A painful illness with risky treatments

Ninety percent of lupus sufferers are women, diagnosed between 15 and 45 years old. The diagnosis is still complicated, because lupus mimics the signs and symptoms of other more recognizable diseases. The most common symptoms of lupus are:

A butterfly facial rash along the cheeks Shortness of breath Fatigue Fever Joint pain Chest pain Skin lesions Dry eyes Chest pain Confusion

Unfortunately, conventional treatment of lupus usually incorporates the use of immunosuppressive drugs, such as cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan®) and methotrexate (Rheumatrex ™). These medications certainly help control inflammation, but they also have some very serious side effects, such as an increased risk of cancer, infections, viruses, kidney and bladder problems, hair loss, irregular periods, lung damage and pancreatitis.

Patients with lupus already have a high risk of kidney disease, and these medications greatly increase that risk. Alternative remedies are very necessary, and the potent turmeric herb can provide a safe solution.

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The "lupus nephritis" that threatens life

It is estimated that between 50 and 60% of all patients with lupus suffer from kidney inflammation. This condition, called lupus nephritis, occurs when the kidneys stop working properly and begin to lose protein. If not managed, the complication can lead to kidney failure, one of the leading causes of death among patients with lupus.

There are three primary markers of lupus nephritis: high blood pressure, hematuria and proteinuria. Hematuria is the presence of blood in the urine and proteinuria is an excessive amount of protein in the urine, which can manifest as foamy urine or swelling of the hands, feet, abdomen or face. It has been shown that turmeric helps reduce these three symptoms.

How turmeric could help

Preliminary studies in animals point to the potential benefits of turmeric in kidney inflammation, mainly because the main component of the herb curcumin. It has been proven that curcumin helps keep proinflammatory agents under control, such as adhesion molecules, transcription factors, enzymes, protein kinases and the redox state. Studies show that curcumin can help relieve arthritic pain by blocking the action of proinflammatory proteins called cytokines. It is thought that these same inflammatory modulators have an effect on the processes driven by the inflammation of lupus.

The researchers set out to determine the effects of turmeric in patients with nephritis due to non-treatable lupus. Twenty-four patients were divided into two groups: 12 patients took one turmeric capsule of 300 mg, composed of 22.1 mg of curcumin, with each meal for 3 months (for a total of 3 capsules per day), and 12 patients took one placebo pill. Turmeric decreased blood pressure, hematuria and proteinuria markers, while placebo showed no significant effects.

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The randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study published in the Journal of Kidney Nutrition, offers hope to people who currently suffer from lupus nephritis, and turmeric has the promise of a possible prevention of protection for all patients with lupus.

Turmeric offers new hope for people with lupus, Source: http://undergroundhealthreporter.com/turmeric-for-lupus/

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