Turmeric (Curcumin)

What Is Turmeric and How Does It Work?

Turmeric is a natural herb that is commonly used as a spice in a wide variety of food. It is a plant that is originally from India. Turmeric is also called curcumin, which is the active ingredient in the spice. When used as a spice in food, turmeric powder is yellow in color. It can also be used as an herbal supplement as follows:

Taken orally, turmeric is used to as a treatment for indigestion (dyspepsia), abdominal pain, hemorrhage, diarrhea, flatulence, abdominal bloating, loss of appetite, jaundice, hepatitis, and liver disease, gallbladder complaints, headaches, bronchitis, colds, respiratory infections, fibromyalgia, leprosy, fever, amenorrhea, and cancer.

Used topically turmeric is used as an anti-inflammatory treatment for treat skin conditions. It is also used to treat pain in the body, ringworm, bruising, leech bites, eye infections, inflammation of the oral mucosa, infected wounds, joint pain, and arthritis.

Turmeric is effective in treatment of indigestion (dyspepsia). Studies have shown that turmeric may be effective in lowering the level of cholesterol in the blood, and may be effective at preventing heart disease.

Turmeric is also provides an antioxidant benefit, fighting potential damage from free radicals in the body.

Other uses for turmeric are subject to further study.

Turmeric is available under the following different brand names: Curcumin, Curcuma Longa, Turmeric Root, and Wild Curcuma.

What Are Dosages of Turmeric?

Dosages of Turmeric Should Be Given As Follows:

Adult and Pediatric Dosage Forms & Strengths

Extract standardized to 95% curcumin

  • Indigestion (Dyspepsia)
    • 500 mg taken orally four times a day
    • 200mg/mL (Depo-Turmeric)
  • Colorectal Cancer
    • Curcumin extract: 440 to 2200 mg (containing curcumin 36 to 180 mg) once daily for no more than 4 months

Dosage Considerations

There are no dosage consideration for turmeric.

What Are Side Effects Associated with Using Turmeric?

Gastrointestinal disturbances are possible with chronic use.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What Other Drugs Interact with Turmeric?

If your doctor has directed you to use this medication, your doctor or pharmacist may already be aware of any possible drug interactions and may be monitoring you for them. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with your doctor, health care provider or pharmacist first.

Severe Interactions of Turmeric include:

There are no severe interactions from the use of turmeric.

Serious Interactions of Turmeric include:

There are no serious interactions from the use of turmeric.

Moderate Interactions of Turmeric include:

Cinnamon. Cinnamon and turmeric both increase anticoagulation. Monitor closely.

Mild Interactions of Turmeric include:

There are no mild interactions from the use of turmeric.

This document does not contain all possible interactions. Therefore, before using this product, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the products you use. Keep a list of all your medications with you, and share the list with your doctor and pharmacist. Check with your physician if you have health questions or concerns.

What Are Warnings and Precautions for Turmeric?


This medication contains turmeric. Do not take curcumin if you are allergic to turmeric or any ingredients contained in this drug.

Keep out of reach of children. In case of overdose, get medical help or contact a Poison Control Center immediately.


Hypersensitivity, bile duct obstruction, gastric ulcer. Avoid prior to surgery as it may cause bleeding.

Effects of Drug Abuse

There are no effects of drug abuse from the use of turmeric.

Short-Term Effects

There are no short-term effects from the use of turmeric.

Long-Term Effects

There are no long-term effects from the use of turmeric.


There are no cautions associated with the use of turmeric.

Pregnancy and Lactation

There is no information available. Please consult your doctor.

Medscape. Turmeric.

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