If you enjoy foods from India and the Middle East containing curry, you’ve eaten turmeric. Both in food or in supplement/pill form, it has been said to possess some health benefits–internally as a blood purifier and externally as a natural antiseptic, for example. Fortunately, turmeric has few side effects.
Turmeric is a bright, yellow-orange herb in the ginger family and has been used in Indian cooking as a spice, in cosmetics and as a dye for over 2,500 years. Turmeric as also been used in Ayurvedic medicine for thousands of years.
If you have gallbladder disease and use turmeric as a dietary supplement, it can make your condition worse, according to the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM).
If you’re taking drugs like Pepcid, Tagamet or Zantex to reduce stomach acid, turmeric can interfere with them and even potentially increase stomach acid production.
The University of Maryland Medical Center says turmeric exacerbates the negative effects of low blood sugar drugs for diabetes, “increasing the risk of hypoglycemia (low blood sugar).”
Do not take turmeric supplements if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. It’s safe, however, to eat foods with turmeric during this time.
References and ResourcesSkinexperience.com: What's Turmeric?
National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Turmeric
University of Maryland Medical Center: Possible Interactions with Turmeric