It may not be a magic bullet, but…

We’ve known for a while that curcumin can fight inflammation and help repair oxidative damage to cells. But it may also be the newest breakthrough in diabetes care, too.

According to a recent clinical trial, curcumin may help prevent diabetes in people at high risk. The new study included 240 adults with prediabetes who were randomly assigned to take either curcumin capsules or a placebo. The curcumin group took six 250-mg capsules per day for a total daily dose of 1,500 mg per day.

After nine months, 19 of the 116 placebo patients had developed type 2 diabetes. But none of the 119 patients taking curcumin had.

This is downright remarkable. And if it were a drug, it would be “fast tracked” for approval so quickly your head would spin. Only, with curcumin, you don’t have to worry that a year later, you’ll find out about some awful, deadly side effect. Because there are no side effects with curcumin.

Of course, if there’s anything I’ve learned through these years of practicing medicine, it’s that there’s no such thing as a magic bullet. But if curcumin can help enhance the effects of a healthy diet and regular physical activity, then it’s certainly worth considering.

“Curcumin Extract for Prevention of Type 2 Diabetes,” Diabetes Care 2012; July 6 (epub ahead of print)