Turmeric, which has recently been celebrated for its immune-boosting properties, has figured prominently in the Okinawan diet for hundreds of years. Okinawans use it as both a cooking spice and a tea, and scientists have started to study it for its anticancer, anti-inflammatory, and anti-aging properties. Its main compound, curcumin, has shown in both clinical and population studies to slow the progression of dementia—a reason why Okinawans may suffer much lower rates of Alzheimer’s disease than Americans.
Turmeric regulates FOXO3 (a gene associated with longevity that reduces inflammation in the body), making our cells more efficient. Traditionally, Okinawans sliced and dried turmeric and then steeped it to make tea. But today most people rely on powdered turmeric for their daily cooking and drinking. You can enjoy this smoothie as a snack, a light meal, or even a dessert.
The Blue Zones Kitchen fuses scientific reporting, National Geographic photography and 100 recipes that may help you live to 100. The Blue Zones’ food tradition is going the way of the dodo bird, thanks to the encroachment of the American Food Culture.Learn More