Turmeric is being used as a spice from the very early period of recorded history because of its colouring, flavour and digestive properties. It is an important and ancient spice known to have existed and been used even during Vedic and Biblical times.
Turmeric, botanically called “Curcuma Longa’, is essentially a crop of the tropics, with cultivation extending from India to Indo-China, East Indies, a portion of China and Sri Lanka. It is the root of a plant of ginger family and continues to be extensively used as a versatile spice throughout India, the Middle East and Far East in both vegetarian and non-vegetarian food preparation.
Turmeric has been used as an ingredient in Ayurvedic and Unani system of medicine in India from ancient times. Turmeric is a versatile commodity with many uses, though outside India it is known only as condiment and colouring agent, used as a flavour, meat dressings and salads. In the textile industry, turmeric was used as a dye for silk, cotton and wool. In cosmetic industry, it is used in producing facial and skin creams. Similarly in pharmaceutical industry, it is extensively used in preparations of indigenous medicines. Thousands of scientific findings has been published and many patents were awarded on different uses of turmeric. As of October 2011 there are more than 4300 articles cited on the subject of Curcuma Longa products including 1604 on cancer, 66 on arthritis, 181 on alzheimer’s disease and 151 on diabetes. This demonstrates that Curcuma Longa is now being used in new ways. But not a single publication is available in the market to know the exact progress of turmeric in the world today. So we have tried to compile the scattered informations in a single unique manuscript. This book is valuable for students, research scholars and scientists for their day to day work.