This article reports on a study from Thailand of curcumin in the treatment of knee osteoarthritis. Many people are unable to use NSAIDS (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) because of side effects. Curcumin is known to be anti-inflammatory because it is a 5-lipoxygenase inhibitor and a COX inhibitor, with numerous other functions. Curcumin was extracted from dried turmeric powder for this study.
Researchers conducted a randomized, double blind controlled trial of patients on 1,500 mg/day of turmeric (Curcuma domestica*) extract compared to ibuprofen 1,200 mg/day. The study lasted 4 weeks, and outcomes of the treatments were evaluated at 2 weeks and 4 weeks. A total of 524 patients were studied. Results were evaluated by individual knee evaluations as well as a test of how far the patients could walk in 6 minutes.
The study results showed that turmeric extract (curcumin) as an anti-inflammatory was just as effective as ibuprofen for osteoarthritis of the knee, with fewer side effects than ibuprofen.
CONCLUSION: Turmeric extracts are good alternatives to NSAIDs for osteoarthritis of the knee, especially for people who have a history of side effects.
NOTE: *Curcuma domestica is the “domesticated form of turmeric.
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Turmeric (Curcuma longa).