Turmeric Milk for Healing

This week the Southeast was hit with Hurricane Irma - luckily, the Atlanta area made out okay but we were warned to prepare for strong winds that could knock out our power. So I did the logical thing and meal prepped before the storm so that I would have food in case I couldn't cook for a few days. That meal prep included a giant pot of chickpeas and quinoa which I have been eating everyday this week...only to find out that this "gluten-free" dish wasn't gluten free at all. 

turmeric-milk

I know what you're thinking - she's one of those people! While I do follow a gluten free diet, it isn't because of some fad, it's because I have to in order to maintain my health. I have Celiac Disease which means that even the smallest amount of gluten in my system will give me a host of unpleasant symptoms, the major ones being chronic inflammation, pain, and anxiety. When I get sick the effects can last from a few days to two weeks and there are very few ways to help speed up the healing. Enter turmeric.

Turmeric is probably the most celebrated herb out there these days - and it should be! It's truly an amazing healer. Turmeric is full of nutrients, antioxidants, and anti-inflammatory compounds that promote healing. When combined with warm milk, other warming spices, and a bit of sweetness, it makes for a delicious and comforting nightcap. I whip this up when my muscles are sore after classes, when I'm feeling a bit run down, to help me fall (and stay) asleep, or if my digestive system isn't thrilled with me like this week. 

Turmeric Milk Recipe

  • 1 cup organic nut milk 
  • 1 teaspoon organic turmeric powder
  • 1/4 tsp organic ginger powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon organic cardamon powder
  • 1 finely crushed peppercorn
  • pinch of saffron, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon unprocessed honey (optional)
  1. Add all ingredients to a small pot and bring to a boil.
  2. Simmer for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Heat is what activates all of the healing compounds in the turmeric! 
  3. Remove from heat until drinkable and then add honey (if using).
  4. Optional: Foam a bit of additional milk and make it a latte. 

I know, I know...pepper in a sweet drink? Totally crazy. But, it's important. A little bit won't change the taste too much, I promise. It's the piperine in the peppercorn that helps the body assimilate curcumin, the healing agent in turmeric. Basically, your body does a better job recognizing the beneficial compounds when both are present! Make sure to add your honey after the tea has cooled slightly as heating honey makes it toxic. 

When I have had a Celiac episode, I take this drink every day until the inflammation has subsided. If you are someone who has chronic inflammation, feel free to drink this on a regular basis. If not, enjoy Turmeric Milk a few times a week or as needed. Like all medicinal herbs, turmeric can have a few side effects. According to the National Institutes of Health, turmeric should be avoided if you take blood thinners, have diabetes, gallbladder issues, take antacids, or are breastfeeding. If you are unsure if turmeric is right for you, consult with your health care provider before adding this to your regimen. Happy healing!

This recipe was adapted from the Purna Yoga Turmeric Milk recipe.