Are There Health Benefits to Drinking Turmeric Lattes?

Turmeric lattes, also known as turmeric milk, golden milk, and Haldi Doodh, have a long history. People in India have been drinking turmeric and milk with spices as an Ayurvedic medical remedy for hundreds of years. These drinks are typically yellow to bright gold because of turmeric’s bright color. The impressive look and unique taste have made turmeric lattes a new staple at some cafes and specialty grocery stores around the world.

Turmeric lattes can be made in many ways. The staple ingredients are turmeric and some type of milk, but many lattes are sweetened with honey or another natural sweetener. A turmeric latte can also contain other spices, including ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, black pepper, and more.

Since turmeric has gained popularity in the west, claims about its health benefits have become widespread. For example, many sources say turmeric can be used as a treatment for:

  • Hangovers
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Baldness
  • Hirsutism (excessive body hair)

It’s also been touted for its anti-cancer and fertility-boosting properties as well as a therapeutic treatment for Alzheimer’s disease. However, science has only supported some of these claims so far.

Nutrition Information

A 100 milliliter (jut under a half cup) serving of a cashew milk turmeric latte contains:

Turmeric lattes are a great source of:

Turmeric is also an excellent source of phosphorus. Studies show that phosphorus is a critical part of healthy bones, teeth, and DNA. Getting enough phosphorus in your diet can reduce your risk of anemia, infection, or bone problems.

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Potential Health Benefits of Turmeric Lattes

Turmeric lattes are a great source of vitamins and minerals. However, what makes turmeric lattes so potent can cause complications for people with specific medical conditions.

Reduced Inflammation

Tumeric spice is one of the richest sources of curcumin available. Curcumin is what makes turmeric yellow. Some studies have found connections between curcumin and lower inflammation levels in the body. inflammation is linked to chronic diseases like heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and even cancer. Drinking turmeric lattes regularly may help you reduce chronic inflammation and risk of these serious diseases.

Brain Health

Consuming curcumin may also help improve your memory and general brain health. Early studies suggest that regularly ingesting moderate amounts of curcumin can help increase brain chemicals that are linked to better memory formation and growth. Curcumin is also linked to a lower risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

Potential Risks of Turmeric Lattes

Because turmeric lattes have such potent ingredients, you should consult with your doctor before adding them to your diet. Consider the following before preparing or drinking turmeric lattes:

Stomach Distress

Curcumin has plenty of benefits, but it’s not perfect. The studies that discovered curcumin’s benefits also found that it’s possible to get too much of it. In large quantities, curcumin can lead to stomach cramping and diarrhea. Studies that found that consuming more than half a gram of curcumin in a day can lead to stomach distress.

But that doesn’t limit you to just half a gram of turmeric. Curcumin only makes up about three percent of ground turmeric, so you can have up to 17 grams of turmeric in a day before hitting that limit. That’s much more than many turmeric latte recipes require. In fact, drinking just one turmeric latte a day can help prevent unpleasant stomach distress. 

Allergies

Another potential side effect of turmeric lattes is that every recipe is a little different. People with nut or dairy allergies or intolerances should be cautious when drinking turmeric lattes. 

Many shelf-stable bottled turmeric lattes are made with soy or nut milk, while refrigerated lattes are often made with dairy. Anyone with a sensitivity to any kind of milk should read labels carefully. Even if the latte itself is safe, it may have been made somewhere that handles ingredients that may trigger allergies. 

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Healthier Alternatives

Homemade turmeric lattes are almost always going to be safest for people with allergies or sensitive stomachs. Making your own latte at home gives you complete control over the amount of turmeric and the type of milk. This is the easiest way to guarantee that you get a turmeric latte that’s safe for you. 

WebMD Medical Reference Reviewed by Dan Brennan, MD on November 03, 2020

Sources

SOURCES:

ESHA Research, Inc., Salem, Oregon.

U.S Department of Agriculutre: “GOLDEN MILK.”

Foods: “Curcumin: A Review of Its’ Effects on Human Health.”

Journal of Traditional Complementary Medicine: “Biological activities of curcuminoids, other biomolecules from turmeric and their derivatives - A review.”

National Institutes of Health: “Phosphorus.”

Natural Reviews, Neurology: “Brain-derived neurotrophic factor in neurodegenerative diseases.”

Neuropeptides: “Effect of curcumin on serum brain-derived neurotrophic factor levels in women with premenstrual syndrome: A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial.”

Pediatric Clinics of North America: “Milk and Soy Allergy.”

Ody, P. Nature’s Miracle Healer TURMERIC FACT OR FICTION?. Souvenir Press Ltd, 2018.

© 2020 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.

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