Golden Milk: You've probably heard of it as turmeric is now the "it" superfood. Growing up in a yogic household, golden milk was served to me regularly. A rich golden cup full of turmeric, honey and almond oil.
These days you will find it at coffee shops, in the refrigerated section of your grocery store and in powder form on the shelves. One important aspect about turmeric that many do not know is that in needs to be activated in order to be usable by the body. This can be done by combining with a good fat (ie, ghee) or by cooking at a low temperature for an extended period of time.
It is a common misconception that black pepper helps with turmeric absorption. Black pepper contains a compound called peperine, which inhibits the metabolic breakdown of turmeric in the gut and liver so that it remains in the body longer and increases the effects. So it is beneficial to combine black pepper with your turmeric, but it does not help with absorption. For this reason I like to add black pepper in addition to either simmering the powder in water or mixing with a healthy fat.
Most of you already know that Turmeric is anti-inflammatory, but did you also know that turmeric has a long list of benefits including, but not limited to:
lubricates the joint
can repair damage to the nerve center caused by drug abuse
nourishes the heart and circulatory system
If you're going to make golden milk, I find the most effective way to do so is by cooking the turmeric powder in water. The turmeric powder needs to simmer at a low temperature for at least 8 minutes to make a paste.
I grew up using a recipe by Yogi Bhajan. I use his traditional way of making turmeric paste, but have made a few adjustments and added some delicious spices.
1/8 tsp organic turmeric powder
1/2 cup filtered water
1 cup nut milk
1 T ghee, almond oil or coconut oil
1 tsp raw honey
a pinch of fresh cracked black pepper
1 pinch ground cardamom
1 tsp grated ginger root
In a saucepan add the turmeric powder and filtered water. Bring to a boil and turn down to a low simmer. Set a timer for 8 minutes. Continue to whisk the paste while it simmers. Cook until a paste forms (at least 8 minutes or longer). Add the milk, ghee, pepper, cardamom and ginger. Bring up the heat until the milk is hot, but not boiling. Once hot, remove from heat and strain through a mesh strainer. Add sweetener to taste and enjoy.
Note: You can make a larger amount of paste to keep in a glass jar in your fridge for up to 40 days. Just increase the amount of turmeric powder and water. When you want to make golden milk, simply heat up your milk and other ingredients with anywhere from 1 tsp to 1 T of turmeric paste, strain and enjoy.
Add-ins: To superpower this already amazing drink you can add reishi, ashwagandha, pine pollen, spirulina or chlorella. The possibilities really are endless. For adaptogen companies I love and trust head over to my "Products I love" page.
Once you've made the paste you can add it to other dishes and drinks. I like to add it to oats, lattes, curries, stir fries, etc.
Turmeric is an amazing root that can have really impactful benefits on your health. I highly recommend making it a part of your regular diet. To add to all the incredible benefits of turmeric, regular consumption can lead to a beautiful golden glow. You really can't go wrong.