I first started drinking this concoction on a regular basis after I damaged my knee running last November – too many miles before my body was ready. The reason being that turmeric – and therefore turmeric tea – is a powerful anti-inflammatory. Research has been done to test whether it is actually proven to be more powerful than a NSAID (non sterodial anti-inflammatory drug), and whilst concrete evidence of its efficiency is yet to be documented the research is encouraging.
I had heard about a version of this drink some years ago, but dismissed it with a pinch of salt believing a bright yellow curry drink would quite frankly be a little (nay, a lot) rank. My subsequent experience of downing a shot glass of turmeric in water in a bid to deter menstrual cramps cemented my feelings (!). I nearly puked it straight back up and it didn’t seem to help with my cramps either, after that I decided to stick with my favourite savoury recipes for my turmeric fix.
Then, I learned some advice that turmeric needs to be combined with fat in order for the body to make use of its anti-inflammatory properties (as is usually the case when cooking a curry) -In walks lovely, creamy, delicious coconut milk. Black pepper is another good combination, to assist with activation however I’ve left this out of my tea.
In order to make the drink even tastier I added fresh ginger (also anti-inflammatory and helps calm the digestive system – whoop!), a little cardamom and then vanilla extract and stevia to sweeten. Not only does this taste great, it is warming and comforting, and though I can’t clinically confirm it, I’m sure it helped to bring down my runners knee inflammation and boost recovery from my Christmas cold.
An inflammation in the body is not just where you might feel physical pain from a strain or DOMS from exercise, infections also cause inflammation. Almost every modern disease is caused or affected by inflammation. Therefore maintaining an anti-inflammatory diet is really vital for optimum health (I’m barely scratching the surface of this long topic here – go ask a doctor or a naturopath..)
I’d choose a turmeric tea instead of cocoa before bed any day! Someone get [insert coffee chain] to start serving this please!
- 1 Tbs freshly grated ginger
- 2 tsp turmeric
- ½ tsp ground cardamom
- 165mls full fat coconut milk (I like the mini cans by Thai Kitchen, or use ½ a regular can)
- 330 mls water (2 empty coconut can's worth)
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- ½ tsp stevia liquid
- Squeeze the juice from the grated ginger into a saucepan along with the flesh.
- Add the turmeric, cardamom, coconut milk & water and bring to just shy of a boil. Remove from the heat, add the vanilla and stevia and strain to serve.