Researchers are finding what Ayurveda, India's ancient system of medicine, has known for centuries about the healing powers of turmeric root. Whether consumed fresh or ground, turmeric has anti-inflammatory properties that can help alleviate everything from sore muscles to mental fog and nasal congestion.
According to the Mayo Clinic, ongoing lab and animal research suggests that turmeric may help prevent or treat cancer, though clinical trials involving humans are still in the beginning phases. In particular, curcumin is the healing compound found in turmeric that’s responsible for its finger-staining yellow color and medicinal properties.
In a less scientific study, I’ve heard my favorite yoga teacher recommend golden paste—a combination of turmeric, coconut oil and other spices—so many times you’d suspect he sells it door to door. But in addition to fueling my superhuman yoga teacher, many Americans have personally found a significant improvement in their wellness from a daily dose of turmeric.
While taking a turmeric supplement is an option, ingesting turmeric with fat and black pepper increases its absorption. So instead, golden paste is a great DIY infusion to keep on hand. With the digestive support from ginger and healthy fats from cannabis-infused coconut oil, a spoonful of medicinal golden paste can be used in vegetable curries or your morning smoothie. Another classic and popular recipe is golden milk, a health elixir enjoyed throughout southeast Asia and currently having a moment in the U.S.
This spicy hot cocoa is infused with a tried-and-true recipe for turmeric golden paste, which uses our method for making marijuana-infused coconut oil.
1.\tCombine the turmeric, ginger and black pepper in a small saucepan. 2.\tStir over low-medium heat and add water, starting with half a cup. You can add more water as needed until the spices diffuse into a thick, mustard-colored sludge (3–5 minutes). 3.\tRemove from heat and add the cannabis-infused coconut oil. 4.\tStir well until completely incorporated. 5.\tRefrigerate the mixture in a glass container or jar.
1.\tCombine the ingredients in small saucepan. 2.\tHeat the milk over medium-high heat, stirring until the golden paste and cacao powder dissolve. 3.\tFor an extra treat, blend the entire drink for 20 seconds before pouring it into your favorite mug. It will stay surprisingly hot and be topped with barista-style froth.
Photo credit: Erol Ahmed