Turmeric and liver health

Turmeric is a multipurpose herb and food that has many health benefits. Oxidative stress has been considered a key causing factor of liver damage. Chronic liver diseases are often accompanied by increased oxidative stress, irrespective of the cause of the liver dysfunction. Oxidative stress is described as excessive reactive oxygen species (ROS) levels and an oxidant and antioxidant imbalance. Oxidative stress can lead to cellular degradation of proteins, lipids and DNA. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) participates in the liver fibrogenic response and contributes to ischaemia/regeneration, necrosis and apoptosis.

Curcumin is the main constituent of turmeric, the rhizome of Curcuma longa. Turmeric has numerous health benefits including antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Curcumin can reduce lipid radicals in the cell membrane and become a phenoxyl radical, so it is considered a very strong lipid-soluble antioxidant. Furthermore, curcumin was found to inhibit lipid peroxidation and neutralise ROS (superoxide, peroxyl, hydroxyl radicals) and RNS (nitric oxide and peroxynitrite).

Turmeric (curcumin) can be effective in various types of oxidative associated liver disorders.

Farzaei MH et al. Curcumin in Liver Diseases: A Systematic Review of the Cellular Mechanisms of Oxidative Stress and Clinical Perspective. Nutrients. 2018 Jul 1; 10(7): 855.