In episode 77 of his video series, Dr. Larson discusses:
The importance of the gut microbiome and the whole universe of bacteria that it carries is vital to our overall health. When the gut microbiome is in balance and healthy, it affects other parts of the body like the brain, the immune system, and the cardiovascular system. The gut microbiome has a significant influence on the metabolizing of the foods that we eat and the supplements that we take.
There are different forms of curcumin that a person can use to supplement. To gain the most benefit, it is important to understand which form is best. DR. CHAD LARSON
The basic function of the gastrointestinal tract is to partially metabolize foods that are circulated to be absorbed throughout the body, and then passed through the liver. The body has to break down the substances that we eat to utilize as metabolites. The liver then uses two different processes of detoxification to break down the nutrients that we eat.
Curcumin is an active ingredient in turmeric that has been around in the human food supply for thousands of years. It has proven to have a host of medicinal health benefits. Curcumin, or curcuminoids, work by rendering a host of positive health benefits for the system. It works as an antioxidant, an anti-inflammatory, and it helps to modulate the immune system.
There are different forms of curcumin that a person can use to supplement. To gain the most benefit, it is important to understand which form is best. One form of curcumin supplementation is blended with a phospholipid. Specifically, phosphatidylcholine, which is a fat-soluble substance, has been shown to increase the absorption of curcumin and one that Dr. Larson has recommended in the past.
New research, however, has shown that when curcumin is blended with phosphatidylcholine, and it reaches the microbiome, it breaks down into a substance called TMAO, or trimethylamine oxide. Science knows that when there is a build-up of TMAO in the circulation, it increases your risk of arterial plaque, which is the beginning of cardiovascular disease. So, if you are taking that form of curcumin on a long-term basis, the TMAO can increase your chances of having arterial plaquing.
Also, the way that phosphatidylcholine blended curcumin hits the liver causes the liver to use phase two of the liver metabolism, which is glucuronidation. Glucuronidation renders the curcumin metabolites inactive, so you lose all of the benefits because the metabolites are unusable. Therefore, although it is absorbed to a greater degree, the liver breaks down the curcumin into inactive compounds that are not useable.
Another form of curcumin supplement is one that is blended with a trademark nutrient called Bioperine. Bioperine is an extract of piper nigrum, or an extract of black pepper. When blended with black pepper, it goes through an entirely different process. Bioperine stops glucuronidation by stopping the liver from causing an inappropriate breakdown. When blended with black pepper, curcumin stays in its active form. When it is in its active form, your body can reap the numerous benefits of supplementing with curcumin.
When choosing a curcumin supplement, look for Curcumin C3 complex, which is the blend with black pepper, because it is the form that supplies your body with active curcuminoids. The form of nutrients that we take really matters and the science might be different from what the label of a supplement tells you. That is why it is important to know how the foods that we eat, and the supplements we take, breakdown in the body, to gain the most benefit.