It’s a question that’s been asked to me a lot in the last few years. In short, saffron has very high concentrations of the two compounds, anthocyanin, which is what makes green food look green, and carotenoid pigments, which are pigment molecules found in our skin. Carotenoids are responsible for some of the green color we see on plant leaves and even in our eyes.
Turmeric is another plant that’s rich in anthocyanins and carotenoids: a spice found in Indian curry. In fact, it was called ‘Curry-Turmeric’ by its native people, who believed that it brought fertility to their homes and was beneficial for a wide array of health issues including hair growth, skin tone, and even hair and nail conditions.
I’m a huge fan of spice.
Yes, I know that sounds incredibly hyperbolic, but the fact of the matter is that it’s true. You just might want to look away at the photo below or at some of the other stories on this page!
Can it be addictive?
While turmeric contains many health promoting nutrients, it’s certainly not to be smoked as that would be a pretty unhealthful thing. We’re talking of course, about a spice that comes from the Asian pantheon rather than the culinary world. It has a long history of use in medical and medicinal treatments.
However, while it can certainly serve as a culinary treat (I don’t think it is at all), I don’t imagine that it will really be a popular drink or even a food for the regular person. In fact, it appears to contain so many nutrients that any health benefits could be gained over the long term, but of course it could potentially cause an addicting effect.
For starters, turmeric has high levels of anthocyanins and carotenoid pigments known as carotenoids. These are also two compounds commonly associated with a green color in general. So, I don’t think it’s an issue in and of itself, but to me, the fact that it’s so cheap does not make it desirable as a spice as it is likely a fairly safe substance.
It’s hard to gauge the effect of turmeric on those with a sensitivity to certain chemicals, I suppose, though. And, as I mentioned before, I really did see the value of a meal that could be prepared with only 3 of the 5
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