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Back to Complementary medicines for osteoarthritis

Turmeric classification

Turmeric is believed to have anti-inflammatory properties. You can buy ground turmeric over the counter from health food shops, pharmacies and supermarkets. We don’t know yet whether it’s effective in osteoarthritis because there’s only limited trial evidence, but it suggests that it only has minor side-effects.

What is it?

Family: Nutritional supplement of the ginger (Zingiberaceae) family
Scientific name: Curcuma domestica
Other names: C. rotunda L., C. xanthorrhiza Naves and Amomum curcuma Jacq

Turmeric is a perennial plant native to southern Asia. It’s widely grown both for domestic and medicinal purposes. You can buy it from high-street shops.

How does it work?

Studies on animals have shown that turmeric products have anti-inflammatory properties.

Is it safe?

Human clinical trials haven’t found turmeric to be toxic when given at doses of 1–10 g a day. In studies, participants received doses of approximately 1–1.5 g a day but also up to 8 g a day.

Turmeric increased the effects of anticoagulants or antiplatelet drugs in laboratory studies, but the effects on antiplatelet drugs haven’t been demonstrated in humans.

Turmeric trials for osteoarthritis

A summary of the scientific evidence on turmeric for the treatment of osteoarthritis.

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