Turmeric CO2 extract is used both in skincare and healthcare formulations as an anti-inflammatory and antiseptic. The rhizome is a historically well-known food and medicine used for thousands of years in India and has been recently recognized in Western medicine for its wide range of beneficial effects.
TURMERIC – Uses of the herb and the extract
By Jeanne Rose
Turmeric Latin Binomial ~ Curcuma longa L ,
Family – Zingiberaceae
Naming ~ Turmeric has also been called Curcuma domestica, ‘Indian Saffron’, and also known as tumeric or curcumin.
Countries of Origin: Native to Europe and Siberia and naturalized worldwide.
Endangered ~ Turmeric is considered to be an endangered medicinal plant.
General Description of Plant habitat and Growth ~ Botany: Turmeric is an herbaceous perennial plant whose rhizome (an underground stem that grows horizontally) is collected, dried and used as the spice. It needs a hot, moist climate and in India is harvested from December to March. The rhizome is boiled and then let to dry. The rough skins are removed, and it is then ground to make a fine rich yellow turmeric powder. Turmeric is natural preservative.
Turmeric portion of the plant used in distillation, how distilled, extraction methods & yield ~ Turmeric rhizome is semi-dried or steamed, peeled, comminuted, soaked overnight in the distilling water, and then hydro/steam-distilled for the essential oil. Turmeric rhizome is dried and crushed to be solvent extracted.
Yield ~ solvent-free supercritical CO2 extraction of dried crushed rhizomes had a higher yield than the essential oil yield of 2.1-2.48%.
Odor Description ~ The carbon dioxide extract of Turmeric is softly fragrant with a spicy, somewhat floral and slight woody odor.
GENERAL PROPERTIES of Turmeric
Anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antimicrobial, and preservative for the food industry. food colorant, and fabric dye.
Skincare/Cosmetic Use of Turmeric oil/Extract ~ Use Turmeric CO2 as an antiseptic and anti-inflammatory and use either oil or extract for blackheads and good skin tone. Make a paste of a pinch of Turmeric powder, a drop of the extract, some drops of lemon juice and apply this paste on face. Keep until it dry. Daily use definitely improves skin tone as well as helps to remove blackheads. Spray after with hydrosol or a Turmeric toner.
The mixture of equal parts of Lavender oil and Turmeric extract works well as an application for blackheads or in lotion as a toner.
Turmeric Physical Uses & Herbal Use of Turmeric How used ~ Turmeric is used as an herbal extract, CO2 extract in blending, the herb as a food item or to flavor food, and a colorant. The CO2 can be used in essential oil blends to help as an anti-inflammatory while the herb or herbal extract is taken as a supplement.
Turmeric Herb Therapeutic Uses ~ Science News wrote several bits of information about Turmeric in 2007. See 172-167; 172- 37; 172-13; 171-301. It appears to help prevent, and possibly treat, Alzheimer’s disease. Another study showed that a gene that is active in the brain offered one clue to why emotional stress seems to increase the likelihood of getting Alzheimer’s disease. “The US National Institutes of Health is supervising several clinical trials studying curcumin as a treatment for pancreatic cancer, multiple myeloma, Alzheimer’s dementia, and colorectal cancer.”2
Culinary ~ Turmeric is a food and spice. It is commonly used in curries and South Asian cuisine. It is a significant ingredient in most curry powders. Turmeric is also used to give a yellow color to some prepared foods such as canned chicken, mustards, meats, vegetable broth, and other foods (often as a cheaper replacement for saffron). The taste is most interesting and changes with the other ingredients used.
Hydrosol of Turmeric. I have never personally used this hydrosol, but I did search and found this quote, “Turmeric is highly responsive to the season it’s harvested in. … This shows us how turmeric hydrosol can help us adapt to change—both in the environment, and in our lives. … It can soothe distressing issues and ground us in steady health.”4
Emotional/Energetic Uses (AP or IN): Food prepared with Turmeric is considered uplifting and may ease depression. Try the CO2 or steam-distilled oil with Lavender, Clary Sage and/or Cistus as an inhalation.
It blends well with Lavender for a soothing inhalation.
Turmeric extract with Blood Orange and Bergamot EO is uplifting, and bright. See Mojave Mirage Blend in PrimaFleur blends for other uses.
Turmeric Formula for Aching Shoulders & More
20 drops of Turmeric CO2
20 drops of fine Lavender
40 drops of carrier oil
Mix all together and use for aching shoulders. This is mildly pain-relieving
And anti-inflammatory. The mixture can also be used in skincare
formulas for toning, skin eruptions and as a skin soother.
Blending for Purpose with Turmeric ~ Turmeric in Perfumery:
Turmeric is a very unusual addition to blends and perfumes. It is exotic and a heart note that can be used in Chypre blends with Oakmoss and Labdanum as well as florals such as Clary Sage, Rose, Tuberose, Ylang-ylang, and Cistus, Hedychium (ginger lily), Saffron, spices and more. You can try it in a fougère as well.
Turmeric Chemistry and Components Chemistry:
Curcumin is the active ingredient in turmeric root that has been shown to have a wide range of therapeutic effects. Curcumin is known for its antitumor, antioxidant, anti-amyloid and anti-inflammatory properties. Flavex reports 70 – 90 % essential oil containing mainly alpha- and beta-turmerone and ar-turmerone; in addition alpha-phellandrene, alpha-zingiberene, sesquiphellandrene. The extract contains only traces of curcumin.3
History ~ In the 13th century, Marco Polo, writing about his travels in China, described Turmeric, “There is also a vegetable that has all the properties of the true saffron, as well as the color, and yet it is not really saffron. It is also used as an ingredient in many dishes.” “Turmeric has a long history of medicinal use in South Asia, mentioned in Sanskrit medical dissertation and widely used in Ayurvedic systems. Susruta’s Ayurvedic Compendium in 250 BC recommends an ointment containing turmeric to relieve the food poison effect.”1
Turmeric is an ancient remedy.
Key Uses ~ The herb of digestion, the Oil to Soothe Inflammation©.
Contraindications: Turmeric contraindications have not been determined.
Rose, Jeanne. 375 Essential Oils & Hydrosols. Frog Ltd. 1999
Shaath PhD, Nadim A. Healing Civilizations, The search for Therapeutic Essential Oils & Nutrients. Cameron + Company, Petaluma, CA. 2017
This work is sponsored and supported by Prima Fleur Botanicals.