High Absorption Curcumin Supplement

What is Turmeric Curcumin?

Turmeric is a widely used species in India and Southeast Asia, where the plant originated from, although it is now grown in many other hot and humid regions. The part used is the rhizome, which is ground and boiled to create an orange powder that is commonly used for the curry spice, as well as coloring in foods such as mustard, pickles, cheese, and margarine. It has also been used for more than four thousand years in gastronomy, as well as a natural support for various health issues.

Curcumin

Turmeric contains compounds with health-promoting properties called curcuminoids, of which curcumin is the most potent. Curcumin stands out as the major bioactive component of turmeric, and is currently attracting worldwide interest from scientists who have discovered that this turmeric compound has immense health benefits for people dealing with a variety of health challenges, including the likes of, immune deficiencies, poor cardiovascular health, neurodegeneration, inflammation, poor blood sugar balance, cognitive decline, among others.

As outstanding as Turmeric Curcumin is, it is important to note that the potential health benefits of this compound are limited by the fact that the human body is unable to properly absorb it; including its poor solubility, rapid metabolism and rapid systemic elimination.

The pharmacokinetics of curcumin have been investigated in many preclinical and clinical studies. These studies show the low bioavailability of curcumin even in very high oral doses. 

The main barriers that limit the absorption of turmeric in the blood are:

  • Poor water solubility
  • Molecular instability
  • Rapid degradation in water
  • Molecular modification by hepatic and intestinal conjugation in sulfated and glucuronidation forms, which are ineffective and rapidly excreted

Formulations and Results

In 2014, researchers conducted a clinical study with twelve adults to compare absorption of four popular curcumin formulations:

Twelve subjects were then given the same quantity of curcumin, in different curcumin preparations, and on four different occasions. The subjects involved didn’t eat at the same time as taking the supplements. They were then allowed to eat two meals later in the day. Afterward, the researchers measured the curcumin level in their blood, 12 hours after intake.

The researchers concluded that “A high absorption curcumin formulation of hydrophilic carrier, cellulosic derivatives and natural antioxidants significantly increases curcuminoid appearance in the blood in comparison to unformulated standard curcumin CS (45.9-fold), CTR (34.9-fold) and CP (5.8-fold)”.

Relative Absorption for Each Formulation

Sample ID

Type of formulation

Absorption

CS

(The sample was acquired from Sabinsa Corp)

Unformulated standard curcumin

1.0

CTR

(The sample was acquired from Col Cas Biotech)

Curcumin in volatile oils of turmeric rhizome

1.3

CP

(The sample was acquired from Indena USA)

Phytosome curcumin

7.9

CHC

(The sample, CurcuWIN® was acquired from OmniActive Health Technologies)

Formulated with a hydrophilic carrier, cellulosic derivatives, and natural antioxidants

45.9

 

Choosing a High Absorption Curcumin Supplement

With a wide variety of curcumin supplements in capsules and loose powder on the market, it is essential to choose wisely and obtain a reliable product with high absorption curcumin, to obtain the full benefits of this potent compound. Some factors that you should consider when selecting a good curcumin product are:

Ingredients that Enhance Curcumin Absorptions

Black pepper extract: All of these competing supplements obviously contain extracts of turmeric or whole turmeric powder, but it is important to pay attention to what other ingredients are formulated. It is a good idea to go with an option that contains Bioperine® (piperine), which is black pepper extract that can help improve the absorption of curcumin by 2000% and therefore enhance its benefits. It is known to be used in curcumin capsules and powders to increase absorption of curcumin.

Oil (lipid): Traditionally, Ayurveda recommends turmeric to be consumed with a ghee, a type of butter. Oil (lipid) is known to increase the permeability of the intestinal wall.  According to the Turmeric for Health website, various lipid-based curcumin formulations such as liposomes, lipid nanoparticles have to increase bioavailability 30 to 50 times more than unformulated curcuminoids. Consuming high absorption curcumin with fish oil would be great for better curcumin absorptions and more health-promoting benefits.

Ensure that you carefully look for ingredients that have been clinically proven to contain high absorption curcumin for better health benefits. If you are taking unformulated turmeric powder, the daily dosage can be between 2~4 grams, which may require you to swallow many capsules. 

high absorption curcumin

References

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  13. Antony B, Merina B, Iyer VS, Judy N, Lennertz K, Joyal S. A Pilot Cross-Over Study to Evaluate Human Oral Bioavailability of BCM-95CG (Biocurcumax), A Novel Bioenhanced Preparation of Curcumin. Indian J Pharm Sci. 2008 Jul-Aug; 70 (4): 445-9.
  14. Asai, A .; Miyazawa, T. Occurrence of orally administered curcuminoid glucuronide and glucuronide/sulfate conjugates in rat plasma. Life Sci. 2000, 67, 2785-2793.
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  18. Curcumin uptake and metabolism” by Manfred Metzler et. al. 20 SEP 2012. BioFactors Special Issue: CURCUMIN. Volume 39, Issue 1, pages 14–20, January/February 2013 DOI: 10.1002/biof.1042