Antioxidant Curcuma extracts decrease the blood lipid peroxide levels of human subjects


Extracts of the rhyzome of Curcuma longa are widely used as food additives in India and other Asiatic and Central American countries. Moreover, it has been recently shown that these extracts (“turmeric”), as well as “curcumin” and related phenolic compounds isolated from Curcuma, have a powerful lipid anti-oxidant action, when tested in in vitro systems. This justifies the present attempt to find out whether hydroalcoholic extracts of Curcuma longa also exert an antioxidant effect in human subjects. Our data show that a 45-day intake (by healthy individuals ranging in age from 27 to 67 years) of Curcuma hydroalcoholic extract (at a daily dose equivalent to 20 mg of curcumine) results in a significant decrease in the levels of serum lipid peroxides. These peroxides probably play an important pathogenic role in normal senescence and age-related diseases such as atherosclerosis. Therefore, hydroalcoholic extracts of Curcuma longa (that have very low toxicity and have been cleared as food additives in the above countries) may find use in future preventive geriatrics after further clinical studies.

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Correspondence to Ana Ramirez-Boscá.

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Ramirez-Boscá, A., Soler, A., Carrión Gutierrez, M.A. et al. Antioxidant Curcuma extracts decrease the blood lipid peroxide levels of human subjects. AGE 18, 167–169 (1995).

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  • Lipid Peroxide
  • Curcumin
  • Serum Lipid
  • Food Additive
  • Blood Lipid