Cancer is a serious disease and most of the available treatments are very harsh on the body. The best course of action is always one of prevention. We know that one of main prevention factors under our control is our diet. Stacking your diet with superfoods is a sound strategy for keeping disease at bay, and for feeling great right now!
By incorporating potent antioxidants and other healthy plant-based foods into your diet, you can help prevent and fight all manner of diseases, including cancer. A well-known super food you can add to your diet is turmeric.
One of the problems with turmeric is that it is often imported from countries with lax standards for how it’s grown and it can be full of pesticides or even contaminated if it is grown in areas with toxins in the soil. So, as usual, growing it at home is best so you know exactly how it’s been treated. But what is the best way to grow it?
A Turmeric Root
Turmeric is a hard root to find, but there are a few different places that you can look. You can start with your local grocery store or market to see if they carry fresh turmeric roots.
One of the issues with buying it from a grocery store is that this turmeric will probably be sprayed with a growth inhibitor in order to keep it from sprouting in the store. This means it still wouldn’t sprout even if you plant it yourself. Another issue with grocery store turmeric is that it may also have been sprayed with fungicides and pesticides.
The best place you can buy it is from a garden center or a seed catalogue, but again, it may be hard to find places that carry it. Fortunately, you can also buy it on Amazon. The majority of reviews on Amazon are positive for this bundle of roots and most people don’t have any issues with the quality of the turmeric roots.
A Large Pot
This is a large plant so the pot needs to be at least 14 inches tall by 14 inches wide. It also needs to have good drainage holes and a pan underneath because you don’t want the plant sitting in water.
The potting soil should be very rich, but also allow for the water to drain well since this plant shouldn’t be sitting in too much water. Adding some vermiculite to the soil can help with drainage.
A spot indoors with either full sun or only slight shade
If you are lucky enough to have a greenhouse in your back yard, then you’re all set with an ideal location. A spot near a window with southern exposure can also work well though.
1. After you’ve acquired your turmeric roots, soak them overnight in warm water in order to prepare them for planting. This will also help to get rid of any residue that may be present especially if you bought it from the grocery store.
2. Fill the pot with potting soil.
3. Plant the root with the eye bud pointing up in the soil. Then cover it with between one and two inches of soil.
Pro Tip – Break larger rhizomes into smaller pieces that have two or three buds.
4. Water the root well and put it in a location with some sun, but that doesn’t get too hot.
5. Keep the soil moist, but don’t overwater.
Pro Tip – Use a spray bottle to mist the plant every day, so you don’t accidentally overwater it.
6. Treat with fertilizer between two and four times per month with mild or diluted fertilizer.
Pro Tip – Liquid fertilizer is ideal, but stick to organic.
7. Some additional tips can be found in this video:
1. Turmeric can take between six and 10 months for edible rhizomes, or roots, to grow.
Pro Tip – You can eat the stems and leaves earlier than this, but the best part of it is in the root.
2. Once you hit the six month mark, check the rhizomes to see if they are the size of ginger. If they are, you are ready to harvest them.
3. Dig up all the rhizomes in the pot.
Pro Tip – It’s best to harvest all of them at the same time.
4. Change the soil if you want to replant one of them. This is done because the soil will probably be depleted of the necessary nutrients from the first time around.
1. Boil the rhizomes for 45 minutes.
2. Lay them out and dry them for about one week.
3. Peel the roots.
Pro Tip – Wear gloves when doing this because it will dye your hands bright yellow.
4. Grind the pieces to enable the turmeric to be used in a variety of recipes.
Turmeric is a great food to add to your diet to enhance your health. There have been over 800 studies showing that curcumin, which is found in turmeric, may help prevent cancer. Curcumin is a powerful antioxidant. Not only does it have anti-cancer properties, it also is an anti-inflammatory, anti-viral and anti-bacterial.
Curcumin can cause cancer cell death and stop the growth of tumor cells. For a worst-case scenario, a study done by researchers at the Columbia University Department of Surgery studied its effects on pancreatic cancer. They found that patients who were undergoing chemotherapy treatments had increased function, improved appetites and less fatigue when taking curcumin (via GardeningChannel).
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