3. Turmeric helps relieve pain due to arthritis
Arthritis is due inflammation and turmeric can decrease inflammation in the body, Scott said.
“Turmeric can also relieve the pain and stiffness in arthritis… better than conventional pain medications,” Scott added.
In 2014, a group of researchers in Thailand released results of a study that compared the effects of curcumin versus ibuprofen treatment in patients with knee osteoarthritis.
They found out that:
1. Curcumin also works as well as ibuprofen to reduce pain.
2. But curcumin does not have the gastrointestinal side effects experienced by patients who used ibuprofen.
4. Turmeric Can Treat Gastrointestinal Disorders
The anti-inflammatory effect of turmeric can help treat Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD and other gastrointestinal disorders.
“It’s been shown in several preclinical studies and uncontrolled clinical trials as having positive effects on gut inflammation and gut permeability,” Scott said.
“Researchers at Hamamatsu South Hospital in Japan commented that curcumin’s ‘inhibitory effects on major inflammatory mechanisms […] and its unrivaled safety profile suggest it has bright prospects in the treatment of IBD,’” said Scott.
5. Turmeric Can Replace Steroids
While many dogs are put on steroids for allergies and joint pains, there are studies which showed that curcumin is as effective as steroids, Scott said.
The greatest advantage of curcumin is its lack of side effects, Scott stressed.
“Another study published in the Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology shows that combining curcumin with a steroid reduced the side effects of this dangerous medication,” Scott added.
This is thus the main benefit of turmeric: it works as well as medicine but it has no nasty side effect
How to give turmeric to dogs
Scott stressed that curcumin in turmeric is hard for your dog to absorb if it is given as is.
It is important to combine turmeric with healthy oils like coconut oil.
This is what Scott called the turmeric paste: a mixture of turmeric and coconut oil or any healthy oil.
“This can increase the absorption significantly,” Scott said.
Dr. Michael Greger learned that a phytochemical in black pepper called peperine that can increase the absorption of curcumin by up to 2,000 per cent, Scott said.
Do not expect good results if you give turmeric alone, Scott said.
Amount of turmeric to give to dogs
The “golden paste” can be added to the dog’s meal by mixing some water or kefir.
“Most dogs don’t mind the taste at all!” Scott said.
The recommended amount for dogs:
• Small dogs should start with about 1/4 teaspoon per day
• Medium dogs can start with 1/2 teaspoon per day
• Large dogs can start with 3/4 teaspoon per day
• Giant dogs can start with 1 teaspoon per day
You can increase the amount up to about one tablespoon for larger dogs, Scott said.
Some more reminders from Scott:
1. Give turmeric in small amounts a few times a day because curcumin leaves the body quickly.
2. The bright yellow color of turmeric can stain everything, including your dog who might end up sporting a yellow “beard.”
3. Turmeric is binding and can thus cause constipation. Make sure to add some water or kefir to your dog’s meals when you add turmeric.
Possible side effects
Not all dogs should be given turmeric.
1. Turmeric warms the body. If a dog’s body is always hot and your dog always seeks cold floors to lie on, then do not give turmeric to your dog as it might cause a hot flash or hot spots.
2. Turmeric “can interact with some medications, including anti-inflammatory and diabetes drugs. And it may interfere with some chemotherapy treatments,” Scott said.
3. If your dog is taking some medicine, please ask your holistic vet first before adding turmeric to the diet.
4. Turmeric is NOT given to patients with bile tract obstruction or gallstones.
Turmeric Is A Powerful Antioxidant
The best reason to give turmeric though is because it is a powerful antioxidant.
Antioxidants can slow down aging, degeneration and even increase lifespan, Scott said.
“Oxidative stress builds up in your dog over time, just like rust. It causes damage to the cells, proteins, and DNA in your dog’s body,” Scott said.
“A 2015 study discussed how oxidative stress activates inflammatory pathways and leads to chronic diseases, including cancer. The research suggests that ‘curcumin can play a key role in the prevention and treatment of chronic inflammation diseases,’” Scott added.