The Use of Turmeric for Pimples
Turmeric is a shrub in the ginger family that's grown in Asia, India and Africa. It's golden in color and has a bitter taste, making it an often-used spice in curry powder, mustard and some cheeses. This herb, which is sometimes referred to as Indian saffron, may help clear up pimples. Do not use turmeric for pimples without consulting your doctor about the risk and benefits of treatment.
The Acne Resource Center touts turmeric as very useful in treating acne. According to its website, it can clear up pimples whether taken as a supplement or in a food, or if directly applied to the skin. Medline Plus, a website of the National Institutes of Health, acknowledges that laboratory studies have shown turmeric has anti-inflammatory activity, which would explain its ability to bring down the swelling of a pimple.
If you want to take turmeric internally to help pimples, the Acne Resource Center suggests taking it mixed with warmed milk. If you prefer to apply it directly to acne, turmeric and coconut oil can be mixed into a paste and dabbed on pimples. The mixture takes about 20 minutes to dry, and you can leave it on overnight. In the morning, wash your skin as you normally would.
Dried turmeric is available in health food stores, and in the spice section of many supermarkets. You can also find it at ethnic markets, where the selection of the freshest herb is probably best, according to the World’s Healthiest Foods. The color doesn't necessarily affect its potency. However, you should store it in a sealed container and keep it in a place that's dark, dry and cool.
Turmeric fights pimples in a number of ways. The Acne Resource Center says it can dry out blemishes while stopping formation of new ones. It's also said to not be drying to skin. The website notes that South Indian women use it as a daily face mask to maintain their smooth, clear skin. Turmeric may already be in your natural skin care products; it has many synonyms, including curcuma, shati and zingiberene.
Medline Plus says allergic reactions to turmeric are possible. If you experience a rash, discontinue use until consulting your physician. If you have difficulty breathing or swelling of the mouth, lips or throat, seek immediate medical attention. Medline Plus also warns that the herb may increase the risk of bleeding, so make sure all of your health care providers are aware you're using it.
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