Spices and inflammation

Hi all, I use a number of spices, turmeric, cinnamon and more, and found this article which gives scientific/medical evidence as to why they work. Since using spices, together with Vitamin D3 I have not had any chest infections for two and a half years now, following a winter with 5 infections and hospitalisation for double pneumonia. It's the first time Ive found a professional article giving credibility to the efficacy of spices. It's a pretty dense article and on first scan I can't see any specific reference to lung conditions but the evidence about inflammation markers in the body is pretty compelling. See what you think. But please note claque's reply below about predatory publishers as I hadn't realised omicsonline is one of these outfits.


39 Replies

Very interesting. I find spices difficult to take but am a great believer that the role of vit D3 in the prevention of chest infections needs more research.

Very good article, worth keeping the pdf which is available.


"Chronic diseases, defined as diseases of long duration and slow

progression, include inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), heart disease, stroke, cancer,

chronic respiratory diseases,

neurological diseases, obesity, and diabetes."

This is really interesting, I will have to wait until I get home to digest (not a pun) it all. Thanks for the link.

If you google omicsonline you will find that the organisation is not what it seems to be. Be wary !

Indeed. Wikipedia describe them as "widely regarded as predatory". en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OMICS...

Interesting, thanks claque, you are more thorough than me! I had thought it useful as Ive seen a lot of articles around spices on very reputable sites like the Mayo Clinic, John Hopkins, Harvard Medical School etc as well as more wacky ones, and had thought it useful to have it in one article.

I wasn't aware of predatory publishing and can of course see it's dangers now you've drawn my attention to it, but Id have thought this wouldn't automatically invalidate content.

Hi 02,sorry for the slow response. You are quite right in that the nature of the publishers should not invalidate the content , I wasn't trying to suggest otherwise but whenever I read research papers I always look to see if there is likely to be any bias i.e. whether the publisher has any undue interest in it other than the actual publishing , who has funded the research and whether there is a likelihood of any conflict of interest anywhere.

I agree that there are very many reputable sites with some very interesting papers and i look forward to reading this one properly (I have only had a brief look so far)

Do enjoy your day out

Best wishes


Hi Chris - yes while you are agreeing with me, I am also agreeing with you about vested interests. I get a lot of interesting health newsletters from the U.S. and they are almost always trying to sell something - a supplement, or e-book with 'hidden cures'. Nevertheless the information they give is useful and i ignore the sales pitches.

I had a great day out, thanks! All best :)

If I use turmeric I can't go out, or stray too far from the loo. Even a tiny amount added to a casserole has the same effect as a turmeric supplement. It's the one spice that's reputed to be beneficial in many ailments and one that I'd like to use but the side effects are too disruptive. Any ideas on how to sidestep these effects would be welcome. I use other spices 'sparingly', with the exception of cinnamon, think that's my favourite.

I wish the article had mentioned ideal dosage, how much and how often. Turmeric, I love in curries but any ideas from others on how to use it ? Cinnamon is one of my favourite flavours but apart from adding it to fattening deserts and sprinkling it on , any suggestions for use ?

Would be we talking about a teaspoon full or larger amount ?

Thanks for posting O2. To be honest, most of the article didn't hit the spot with me ( because it was too technical) but it did remind me about incorporating more spice in my life.

And who wouldn't want more spice in their lives ? :) :)

It is extremely technical BJ - I was interested in the various inflammation biomarkers but given the status of the organisation, who knows the validity.

I take a 5 gm teaspoonful of turmeric together with about 10 turns of black pepper for the pipeline which makes the turmeric bioavailable together with a dessert teaspoonful of coconut oil, both said to help absorption. Cinnamon I take about 1.25 gms.

I keep an open mind as to what has caused the dramatic lessening of chest infections. Lots of infection control certainly but I was already doing that, plus already taking Vit D3 (over winter 4000iu a day). But my spice regime/VitD hasn't helped my oxygen saturation which has deteriorated during the last year though now a little better than the late spring when it plummeted.

Hi O2....as a long time believer in the health value of herbs and spices (including using them in my artwork) I like what you are saying about using them to avoid the 'winter killers'.

Can I just say though, that coconut oil is not so good. Up until I was diagnosed I used coconut oil for many things including small amounts in cooking.

But after being diagnosed I researched the good and definite no no of what to eat etc. and coconut oil is so bad for the heart and has very little, if any at all, recommendations health wise.

However, for all we know, maybe the really high saturated fats of coconut oil are also a protection against the cold and flu strains!

Not pipeline above - piperine !!

Am I understanding you correctly O2 ? A 5gm teaspoonful ? Does 5 grams fit on a teaspoon ?

It's a shame you didn't see an improvement in your 02 despite not getting any infections. The reason mine plummets so often is because I have so many exacerbations

Yep 5 gm teaspoon, i put it in my porridge along with the other stuff. Asian healers say it needs to be cooked to be effective, maybe that's the fat connection. This was confirmed by a BBC programme - "Trust Me Im a Doctor"?? - where people took turmeric in different ways.

It may have helped my O2 sats, thinking about it. I was able to get off oxygen totally after having pneumonia and having had to use 4 lpm 24/7. It's just that late spring this year, when the grass pollen came, my sats went down low enough to need ambulatory O2 again - nasty non-infective exacerbation, and only now am I beginning to see higher sats even though the exacerbation has passed, not enough yet to get off the ambulatory but watch this space . . . Im currently using just 1.5 lpm and needing it for less activities.

Hope you're well at the mo BJ. :) :)

Just wrote a detailed reply but no matter how many times I pressed 'submit', it just wouldn't post.

Absolutely infuriating, to put it mildly. Basically, I was interested to hear you mention your non-infective exacerbation. Since my fling with Achromabacter in 2015/2016, all my exacerbations are non-infective. Right now I have a humdinger. There's no temps, no sputum just steadily increasing sob, pain and weakness. So every time I try to get through it by various means but then it gets really bad and the only thing that will sort it is 14 days abx. I can't understand it, my GP has no clue and my consultant says infection doesn't always show up with the classic symptoms. They both prescribe abx for me because there doesn't seem to be any alternative.

It's frustrating ! With classic infections you know where you are and can see the abx working through the diminishing amounts of sputum. This, drives me crazy.

Glad to hear your sats are improving at last and hopefully they will keep rising. I'd say mine are on the floor at the moment but I'm still smiling. 😊😊☺️

Rushing out to dentist then to london to see "Soul of a Nation" at the Tate so will reply later BJ. I can see why you are so frustrated.

Well I won't say enjoy, seeing as there's a dentist involved but going to the Tate sounds wonderful. Is it an art exhibition or another type of event within the gallery ?

We've been watching a drama on UTV for a few weeks, called Liar. It's set in a coastal town in Kent and in between the action, I've been loving the sea scales and a big lagoon like area.

Hi again, not left yet. May need dentures to replace a 5-tooth bridge which has had it. Not happy.

Soul of a Nation is an exhibition of black art in the U.S. Ive been wanting to see it for ages and it ends on 22nd, this is the only day I can manage.

Non-infective exacerbations . . . horrid time you're having. It's weird when there's no sputum. My doctor says infections can hide, but mine happened when the grass pollen hit and i have a massive allergy to that. I had to take pred which helped the breathing but didn't improve the lowered sats. Usually when my sats go down it's because sputum is blocking my alveoli and hindering gas exchange but my lungs have been clear all summer. I didn't take any abs, but did coincidentally take the same ones for an infected puncture wound on my elbow, and there was no difference to my lungs from taking them. My respiratory nurse says my sats will eventually return to where they were so here's hoping.

So annoying when you can't pin it down and the medics don't know either. Im so sorry you're laid so low with your exacerbation - I will be crossing my fingers it improves asap. Let us know how it goes.

I saw Liar was on but didn't realise it's set in Kent. Will investigate.

Take care BJ and keep smiling, :) :)

I will :)

Sorry to hear about the dental issue, that's all you need.

That is awesome! I use turmeric ginger and take a turmeric capsule! Make sute you have black pepper with the turmeric! I also have cinnamon! I also don't get sick! I had people droppinh around me like flies all winter! Not me!

How do you eat them R ? Cooked, sprinkled on food and why the black pepper ?. Delighted to hear they've been helping you so much.

Quick reply on the black pepper query. Turmeric is hard for the body to absorb and black pepper contains piperine which increases absorption. Ive read that it increases absorption of other spices too but I can't remember the details :)

O2 trees answered your question! I take a supplement of turmeric! I also use both fresh ginger and turmeric in cooking! Fry it in oil and add all my meat vegs in curries stir fry etc! I also make turmeric lattes with coconut milk and honey! You can google all these things! Including benefits

Personal experience trumps googling every time.

Cheers !

I am now a fan!

After reading your spices post, I looked at your other posts.

I was diagnosed with heart failure at the beginning of April after months of informing my GP of my symptoms/suffering, followed by becoming housebound and bed-bound. My GP failed to refer me.

I was unaware of the report and NHS plans to cut costs by making GPs only refer any patient after a panel decision! So just want to say thank you!

Will also look at the campaign for unprivatised NHS that prioritises patient care over shareholder profit today!

Thank you.

As far as I remember Ktomoph, the panel decision thingy is being trialled in certain areas. But there is so much more. Something I noticed on the forum is that some patients are being asked by their GPs if they have private insurance. This is policy in Essex.

And privatisation really is by the back door. As private companies can use the NHS logo, people usually don't realise they are being treated by a private company. I always ask my GP when Im referred for a test if the people doing it are private or NHS and if there is an alternative I go with the NHS one - which often means long trips to the hospital instead of the clinic attached to the GP surgery but I believe it's worth it.

Keep Our NHS Public is a good site, others are Health Campaigns Together and Stop STPs (Sustainability and Transformation Plans/Partnership - the latest government top down unnecessary reorganisation of the NHS). Sorry if repeating, I can't remember what I put on the post you mention. So glad you found it interesting.

Im sorry you've had so much trouble with your heart - Can only hope it improves or at least that it can be managed. Take care :)

Thank you so much for all that info!

Will respond through the post related to the article.

Hi O2Trees....have posted on the British Heart Foundation about this today and received a response that includes the opinion that this is not a subject for this forum!

Was a bit saddened and responded, only to receive the same response!

I believe it is all relevant and that the Healthunlocked forum and all of its communities are the place to discuss all the related issues.

I don't think anyone has knocked you for the issues you have brought to peoples attention.........

No they haven't Ktomoph but when i first joined in 2012 I posted about the Health and Social Care Bill as it was then, asking the BLF to be proactive in opposing that and they replied that they had to be discreet due to negotiations they were having backstage with the Dept of Health about getting a framework for treatment of lung disease established and they were worried about jeopardising that. It seemed too softly softly to me, especially as other charities were being quite militant about wanting to oppose the Bill and keep the NHS safe from privatisation. And I think some members back then thought I was a troll :D

Hi that takes some reading!! I am a covert to juicing and I add fresh turmeric and ginger as I am aware of the benefits, how do you integrate others into your diet? is there a special recipe you use, I'd be very interested.


Oh yes, certainly a special recipe! Porridge! To which I add 5 gm turmeric, 10 turns of my pepper mill, chopped lump of ginger, 5 chopped cloves, 1.25 gms (approx) of cinnamon and some coconut oil. Turmeric needs piperine and oil to absorb properly. According to a BBC small trial it also needs to be cooked too which is why I put it in my porridge, which is dark ocre in colour. Sometimes I add chopped banana or frozen cherries for sweetness, plus always goats milk yoghurt and some milk. It's a kind of morning ritual and takes around 15 minutes - it gets boring sometimes but I daren't stop as since doing this Ive been so much healthier.

Thank you, I didn't realise turmeric had to be cooked!

An Indian friend also told me that.

Hi All

Came across good sites that promote the benefits of Turmeric - search for Golden Milk. American sites mostly, but as always with such sites, comes with no scientific proof only apocryphal stories.

Like others on this site I have spent much time reading medical and non-medical reports. It is from my findings that non-medical make the most exaggerated and non proven claims.

Having said all that, and I can only speak for myself, I take a spoonful of my own developed Turmeric mixture each night in a small cup of Almond or Hemp Milk (available in most Supermarkets my local Tesco has it), or any non dairy. Though males are advised to steer away from Soya. But that's a different story.

My research into anti-inflammatory herbs and spices has led me to creating my own version. Totally nonscientific and I make no claims, but it seems to work for me - but so do placebos work for most people and that is a scientific fact. I take it to try and help my Asthma and from years of running and playing sport at a competitive level -arthritis of the toes.

Like in my cooking I use approx measures and have found it seems to work.

Two heaped tablespoons of Turmeric in a pan. Buy from Indian wholesale, cheap as chips.

Lots of ground black pepper

Half teaspoon of Ground Cumin, Ground Cloves, Ground Cinnamon. Research shows all these to be anti-inflammatory.

Grated piece of root ginger about 1/2"

Mix in a pan with enough water to make a runny paste.

Slowly bring to the boil and gently boil until a thicker consistency that sort of sticks to a spoon (told you its non scientific and Mary Berry would have an apoplectic fit).

Then crucially add some fine oil, Coconut oil has been mentioned, I use Olive oil or ground nut oil. remove from heat and allow to cool. Store in sealed jar in fridge, seems to keep for a couple of weeks.

Two crucial things from my research. Turmeric is fat soluble, that's why most capsules on their own are useless, it also needs pepper to aid absorption.

Before bed with two Garlic capsules (also anti-inflammatory and ant-bacterial, good for heart blood and best contraceptive known to man). Mix a teaspoon of the above with a couple of tablespoons of the non dairy milk. Swallow as best you can.

Looks like sxxt, tastes not much better than what I can only imagine sxxt tastes like. But something that looks so horrible and tastes not much better must be doing you good.

Does it work. My joints are much better when taking. If I stop taking it for a few days I find my Hallux (big toe's starts to give pain). Start taking it again, swelling and pain subside to just background noise. Chest and breathing also feel much better.

Make your own minds up.

You seem to be having more or less the spices I take Tryfan. I could do with getting a bit more cumin into my diet. And like you, placebo or not, it works for me :)

Great post btw :)

Really interesting. Will try. Any reason why one should not fry the spices in the oil? I also have arthritis in toe joints, without doing any sport though. I find wearing woollen socks really helps. M&S men's lambs wool.

Fry spices in oil? That's what they do in India, using ghee. Seems to work there so why not? In the BBC small trial I mentioned, three groups took turmeric in different ways and the only one which made a difference was where those people had cooked with turmeric. Just remember it gets absorbed best with fat/oil and black pepper.

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