Turmeric can also reduce inflammation of bowel

April 21st, 2009 - 12:33 pm ICT by IANS  

Sydney, April 21 (IANS) Curcumin, the major yellow constituent of turmeric powder, considered auspicious in India, also reduces inflammation of the bowel.
This discovery may pave the way for diet-based treatments for people suffering from the genetic form of Crohn’s disease.

“Crohn’s disease, a form of inflammatory bowel, can be aggravated or relieved by the sufferer’s diet,” said Christine Butts of Plant & Food Research.

“However, due to the number of genes involved, different people with different disease genotypes can be affected by different foods, so there isn’t a ‘one size fits all’ solution.”

“Only by systematically linking particular components to effects on the specific genotype can we get a true understanding of the disease and how to treat it,” Butts added.

“This finding means that some people with Crohn’s disease may benefit from eating turmeric, but this is entirely dependent on their genetic makeup. Others may not get any benefit, or may even have a severe reaction. However, we are one step closer to understanding this disease and how to best control it with diet.”

“In diseases with complex genetics, such as Crohn’s disease, understanding which genetic variants are affected by which food compounds is important in knowing what to avoid in the diet,” says Kieran Elborough, acting general manager, Food Innovation at Plant & Food Research.

The primary aim is to develop gene specific foods targeted to preventing, improving and curing diseases, said an Auckland University release.

The results of the study were published in the British Journal of Nutrition.

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