When it comes to feel good fast food, a turmeric smoothie is tops in my book. Although I have known about the incredible health and whole body healing benefits of turmeric for a while now, I only learned about the mood-boosting benefits of the Indian anti-inflammatory “super spice” recently.
But really, to imply sipping a turmeric smoothie could potentially lift your spirits might actually be an understatement. Apparently, the “super spice” has recently gone head to head with Prozac….
Can a Turmeric Smoothie REALLY Improve Your Mood?
Holistic psychiatrist and author of the NY Times Best-Selling book, “A Mind of Your Own”, Kelly Brogan, M.D., has not only been busy blowing the lid off prescription antidepressants, she’s also been shining the spotlight on some incredibly powerful natural remedies for mental health. And turmeric happens to be one of her favorite all-natural, organic mood-boosters.
I was just blown away after reading the research and mechanism for how turmeric affects mood in Dr. Brogan’s blog post, “Move Over Prozac: How Turmeric Helps with Depression”. Considering the use of prescription antidepressants has increased almost 400 percent from 1998 to 2008, you would think the turmeric research would be more widely publicized. I mean let’s face it: a LOT of people on are prescription anti-depressants these days. Maybe the average person is not aware of how rampant antidepressants have become within the general public, but as the wife of a surgeon who is required to ask his patients about their medication before surgery, I know countless of his patients have been put on one or more prescription antidepressant or mood-altering substances (such as valium) by any number of doctors. And yet, research from a randomized controlled trial (the gold standard of studies) published in 2014 shows curcumin, one of the active and most heavily researched phytonutrients found in turmeric, has been shown to have serious benefits for major mood disorders.
Researchers of the 2014 study noted:
“This study provides first clinical evidence that curcumin may be used as an effective and safe modality for treatment in patients with MDD [major depressive disorder] without concurrent suicidal ideation or other psychotic disorders.”
Although I always much prefer to get the “whole food” (or in this case, the “whole spice”) as opposed to isolating compounds within it, the 2014 study on the mood-boosting benefits of a natural compound found in turmeric should make anyone in the field of psychiatry pause for just a moment before nonchalantly penning yet another SSRI Rx.
The thing to keep in mind here is that unlike prescription antidepressants, natural foods and spices (such as turmeric) do not come with a laundry list of terrible side effects. Unless you are allergic to a specific ingredient in the turmeric smoothie, there should only be side “benefits”.
I’m certainly not a doctor, but if I were one, I think I might tell all of my patients to sip a Turmeric Smoothie once a day for a month. With a warning, of course:
Potential Side Effects of Regular Turmeric Smoothie Consumption May Include Strengthened Immune System, Reduction in Whole-Body Inflammation, Liver Detoxification and Improved Mood.Print
- 2 carrots (peeled and chopped)
- 1/4 cup cold water
- Juice from 1 whole lemon
- 2 cups frozen pineapple (chopped)
- 1/2 cup coconut milk (chilled)
- 2 teaspoons turmeric
- 1 teaspoon cardamom
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup ice cubes
- Place the carrots, water and lemon juice in a small saucepan; heat over medium heat for about 4 to 5 minutes, or until carrots soften. Transfer carrots and liquid to a glass and place in the freezer for 10 minutes to chill.
- Meanwhile, add the pineapple, coconut milk, turmeric, cardamom and vanilla to a high speed blender (such as a Vitamix); process on high speed until smooth and creamy. Add the chilled carrot-lemon mixture and ice cubes and process again until smooth and creamy. Drink chilled
P.S. Looking for More Superfood Smoothie Recipes?
If you liked the Turmeric Smoothie recipe above and you are looking for more healthful, clean and delicious smoothie recipes, be sure to check out our Clean Cuisine Superfood Cookbook (only $2.99 as a digital download). The book includes 40 superfood salad dressings, smoothies, sauces, dips, desserts and more!