Spice Component Combats Depression Symptoms

Krystle Vermes
Published Online: Tuesday, August 19, 2014
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Curcumin, a component of the traditional Indian spice, turmeric, is highly effective in combating the symptoms of major depressive disorder, according to research published in the Journal of Affective Disorders.
 
The double-blind study involved 56 individuals diagnosed with major depressive disorder. Over the course of 8 weeks, the participants received twice-daily doses of either 500 mg of BCM-95’s curcumin or placebo. At the conclusion of the study, the results showed that curcumin was significantly more effective than placebo in improving several mood-related symptoms, indicating the extract is an extremely effective antidepressant.
 
“There is now increasing support for the antidepressant effects of curcumin, with a previous study demonstrating BCM-95 curcumin to be as effective as a pharmaceutical antidepressant for the treatment of depression,” said lead study author Adrian Lopresti, MD, in a press release. “Further larger clinical trials are required to determine the optimal treatment dosage, length of treatment, and long-term efficacy of curcumin.”
 
According to the study authors, curcumin “influences several biological mechanisms associated with major depression, namely those associated with monoaminergic activity, immune-inflammatory and oxidative and nitrosative stress pathways, hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal axis activity, and neuroprogression.” BCM-95 said it is critical to note that its version of curcumin is unique in the sense that it is designed for high absorption and includes turmeric essential oil, which is not present in standard curcumin.
 
Approximately 1 in 10 adults in the United States experience depression, according to the US Centers of Disease Control and Prevention. The condition is known to affect the outcome of chronic illnesses, such as arthritis, asthma, cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes, and obesity.
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