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Depression is a disease that affects an estimated 350 million people all over the world. The World Health Organization reports that over 800,000 people die each year because of depression, with suicide being the second leading cause of death in 15 to 29 year olds. In fact, an estimated 7 percent of US adults (that’s 15.7 million people!) had at least one major depressive episode in 2013. Treating depression very difficult because of the stigma against mental health issues today.
There are many side effects that come with taking prescribed medication as well. Numerous medicated patients complain that they don’t “feel the same” or that the medication makes them sluggish and tired all the time. 
However, there are different studies that focus on the natural ways we can manage depression – with a very promising herb called Turmeric showing some very interesting results in new research.
Turmeric is an herb that has been historically used to manage a variety of ailments, because of an active substance called curcumin. Curcumin is a very strong antioxidant which can help fight chronic disease. A study published in 2016 by Al-Karawi, Al Mamoori, and Tayyar concluded that curcumin administration helped significantly reduce the signs and symptoms of major depression. Sanmukhani, et. al in 2014 had similar results, wherein curcumin could be used in conjunction with fluoxetine (a medication typically prescribed for depression, also known as Prozac) to manage the symptoms of MDD or major depressive disorder. It was equally as effective, if not better, than Prozac to manage depression — without any of the unwanted side effects. 
Turmeric may even be effective for people who are not diagnosed with a major depressive disorder but still suffer from bouts of depressive episodes. Zhang, et. al. in 2014 published a study that concluded curcumin’s neurorotective and anti-depressive ability could help manage mild, stress-induced depression. Not only is turmeric able to target depression specifically, it can also promote neurological health and well-being. Other important uses for turmeric include management of indigestion, stomach ulcers, arthritis, heart disease, viral and bacterial infections, and even cancer. This is all due turmeric’s potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. 
How To Make Turmeric Lemonade
You can take turmeric in a variety of ways- either in capsule form, as a spice you add to food or as a drink. I’ve even chopped small shavings of fresh turmeric onto savory dishes such as scrambled egg – but not everyone can handle this much turmeric flavor.
It turns out that turmeric is pretty versatile as a drink, you can make tea with it and drink either cold or hot. It can even be added to cool drinks like lemonade. Dried or powdered turmeric will work well; fresh turmeric can be quite spicy so be careful when you use it. Turmeric lemonade is very popular, since lemons pack a punch in the Vitamin C department, which helps boost immunity. Squeeze a few lemons into a glass, add a teaspoon or two of turmeric, some honey and perhaps a pinch of black pepper or cayenne if you’re feeling it – and you’re good to go! 🙂 Turmeric drinks keep pretty well too, so you can make it in advance and store it in your refrigerator overnight.
Getting Extra Benefit From Turmeric
It’s been shown that adding black pepper to turmeric causes what is known as a synergistic benefit – with the positive effects of the turmeric being multiplied. Full report: Substance In Black Pepper Increases Bioavailability Of Beneficial Turmeric Compounds by 2000%
 World Health Organization. Depression. http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs369/en/
 National Institute of Mental Health. Major Depression Among Adults. https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/statistics/prevalence/major-depression-among-adults.shtml
 University of Maryland. Turmeric. http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/herb/turmeric
 Al-Karawi, D., Al Mamoori, D. & Tayyar, Y. (2016). The Role of Curcumin Administration in Patients with Major Depressive Disorder: Mini Meta-Analysis of Clinical Trials. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26610378
 Sanmukhani, J., et. al. (2014). Efficacy and safety of curcumin in major depressive disorder: a randomized controlled trial. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23832433
 Zhang, L., et. al. (2014). Effects of curcumin on chronic, unpredictable, mild, stress-induced depressive-like behaviour and structural plasticity in the lateral amygdala of rats. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24405689
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