Spice Combats Soreness
Curcumin may reduce tissue damage that causes pain, in delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS).
The yellow pigment that gives turmeric its color, curcumin has been shown by numerous previous studies to exert antioxidant and anti-inflammation effects. David S. Rowlands, from Massey University (New Zealand), and colleagues enrolled 17 men in a study in which each subject received either 5 grams curcumin daily, or placebo, for 2 days before and 3 days after performance tests. This was followed by a 2-week ‘washout’ period, after which the subjects crossed over to the other intervention. Moderate-large reductions in pain during exercises, as well as small increases in performance, were achieved in 1-2 days among the curcumin group. The study authors report that: “Oral curcumin likely reduces pain associated with [delayed onset muscle soreness] with some evidence for enhanced recovery of muscle performance.”
Lesley M. Nicol, David S. Rowlands, Ruth Fazakerly, John Kellett. “Curcumin supplementation likely attenuates delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS).” European Journal of Applied Physiology, August 2015, Volume 115, Issue 8, pp 1769-1777.