Turmeric is a spice with a deep yellow-orange color that comes from a plant in the ginger family. It has been used in cooking and Ayurvedic medicine in India and Asia for thousands of years. Curcuminoids are a group of active compounds in turmeric, and the main one is curcumin. Curcumin has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties and gives turmeric its yellow color. Turmeric supplements contain curcumin in much higher doses than what naturally occurs in turmeric spice.
Turmeric supplements are marketed as a way to reduce inflammation. This may be especially helpful for people with diseases related to inflammation such as inflammatory bowel disease and arthritis. The most compelling evidence surrounds turmeric as treatment for rheumatoid arthritis (RA), says Sarah Anzlovar, MS, RD. While studies show that turmeric supplements may be beneficial for certain health conditions, more research is needed.
When looking for the best turmeric supplements, we considered the form, absorbability, dose, and third-party testing. Turmeric supplements are generally safe for most people, but some people may experience negative side effects like stomach upset. Its also important to note turmeric supplements can negatively interact with some medications, like blood thinners, diabetes medications, and some chemotherapies.
Our team of registered dietitians reviews and evaluates every single supplement we recommend according to our dietary supplement methodology. From there, a registered dietitian on our Medical Expert Board reviews each article for scientific accuracy.
Always speak with a healthcare professional before adding a supplement to your routine to ensure that the supplement is appropriate for your individual needs and which dosage to take. Turmeric supplements may interact with medications like blood thinners, chemotherapies, diabetes medications, and others.
Thorne Research Meriva SF
Thorne Curcumin Phytosome supplement is our top pick for turmeric supplements, as Thorne is a reputable supplement company. Thorne collaborates with Mayo Clinic and other reputable health organizations for clinical trials with their supplements. It is third-party tested and NSF Certified for Sporta third-party organization that tests for banned substances in athletics. We also like that Thorne Curcumin Phytosome delivers a research-backed higher bioavailable form of curcumin as a phytosome form. A higher bioavailability means the bodys ability to absorb and use the supplement is higher than other forms of a supplement.
Curcumin Phytosome is a combination of curcumin and a phospholipid complex from sunflower, which means it dissolves in both water and oil. This is advantageous because it can help increase absorption. This form has been shown to be safe, effective, and have greater absorption than plain curcumin. Studies show this form of turmeric supplement may delay muscle soreness after exercise, and Thorne recommends taking 1-2 capsules two times daily, ideally after a hard workout or strenuous activity.
This form of curcumin has also been shown to improve symptoms of osteoarthritis and reduce the rise of blood sugar and insulin after eating. Each capsule delivers 250 milligrams (mg) of sustained release of curcumin phytosome. Thorne Curcumin Phytosome is non-GMO and free of gluten, nuts, eggs, dairy, soy, and fish.
Price at time of publication: $45 for 120 count ($0.75 per serving)
Form: Capsules | Active Ingredient: Curcumin Phytosome (Meriva) | Dose: 500 mg | Third-Party Certified: Yes | Servings Per Container: 60
Natures Nutrition Turmeric Curcumin with BioPerine & Ginger
Natures Nutrition Turmeric and Ginger with Bioperine is a highly rated, budget-friendly turmeric supplement. Natures Nutrition supplements are reviewed by a third-party independent lab and are checked for purity and potency.
Natures Nutrition Turmeric and Ginger with Bioperine delivers 1,500 milligrams (mg) of organic turmeric root with 150 mg of curcuminoids and 300 mg of organic ginger extract. Ginger and turmeric come from the same plant family, and both have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that have been shown to improve symptoms in inflammatory conditions like rheumatoid arthritis.
This supplement also has 15 mg of Bioperine to help increase absorption. Bioperine is a patented black pepper extract that contains the compound, piperine, naturally found in black pepper. Piperine increases the bodys ability to absorb and use curcumin compared to taking curcumin alone. One thing to note is that this supplement has a higher dose of Bioperine (15 mg) compared to other turmeric supplements with Bioperine, which usually have 5-10 mg. While piperine is well tolerated by most, its important to know it can increase absorption of other medications and could act as a diuretic. This is something to note when considering this supplement especially if you take medication.
Price at time of publication: $18 per 120 count ($0.45 per serving)
Form: Capsule | Active Ingredient: Turmeric root, ginger extract, curcuminoids, BioPerine | Dose: 1,500 mg turmeric extract (150 mg curcuminoids) | Third-Party Certified: Yes | Servings Per Container: 40
Best With Just Water
A1Vitality Turmeric Curcumin
- Third-party tested
- Contains a highly absorbable form of curcumin
- Free of dairy, gluten, soy, sugar, wheat, yeast, and artificial flavors
One problem with turmeric supplements is that curcumin is poorly absorbed on its own. Black pepper extract and fat-containing meals can both increase the bioavailability of curcumin. However, if these arent available and youd like to simply take your supplement with a glass of water, we recommend A1 Vitality Turmeric Curcumin.
We like that A1 Vitality Turmeric Curcumin is third-party tested for ingredient amounts and accuracy. Two softgels deliver 60 mg of curcuminoids and 50 mg of curcumin, which is less than other supplements. However, one small study found that taking curcumin with water increased the bodys ability to absorb and use curcumin more than plain curcumin, and also more than curcumin with black pepper extract. It is recommended to take two softgels daily with eight ounces of water, preferably at mealtime.
Price at time of publication: $26 per 60 count ($0.86 per serving)
Form: Softgel | Active Ingredient: NovaSOL Curcumin, turmeric extract | Dose: 1,000 mg total (60 mg curcuminoids, 50 mg curcumin) | Third-Party Certified: Yes | Servings Per Container: 30
Nordic Naturals Zero Sugar Curcumin Gummies
- Third-party tested
- Contains a highly absorbable form of curcumin
- Non-GMO, vegan, and sugar-free
Nordic Naturals Zero Sugar Curcumin Gummies is one of the only third-party tested turmeric supplements that comes in gummy form. Nordic Naturals is a reputable and trusted brand that is not only third-party tested but also internally tests every product for toxins and contaminants.
These delicious mango-flavored, sugar-free curcumin gummies contain 200 mg of Longvida curcumin extract in two gummies. This is a lower dose compared to other supplements, but its a form of curcumin that is more highly absorbed. So, you may not need as high of a dose of this type of curcumin. In addition, one serving has two grams of fiber and 20 mg of sodium.
While Nordic Naturals Zero Sugar Curcumin Gummies are free of sugar and artificial sweeteners, they contain the sugar alcohol xylitol. Sugar alcohols provide sweetness with fewer calories than sugar, but they can cause digestive distress like gas and bloating for some, especially in high doses. Nordic Naturals Zero Sugar Curcumin Gummies are gluten-free, free of artificial colors and flavors, non-GMO, and vegan.
Price at time of publication: $26 per 60 count ($0.86 per serving)
Form: Gummy | Active Ingredient: Longvida Optimized Curcumin Extract | Dose: 200 mg | Third-Party Certified: Yes | Servings Per Container: 30
Garden of Life mykind Organic Turmeric Booster
- NSF Certified
- Contains vitamin C and fiber
- USDA organic, non-GMO, gluten-free, and vegan
A powdered form of turmeric mimics actual turmeric spice, in terms of form and texture, but delivers a higher dose of anti-inflammatory curcumins than the traditional spice. Pure turmeric powder (spice) contains about three percent curcumin and curcuminoids by weight, compared to most supplements, which contain turmeric extracts with about 95 percent curcuminoids.
Garden of Life mykind Organic Turmeric Booster is NSF certified, so you can trust it contains the ingredients listed on the label and doesnt have harmful contaminants. It has 2.4 grams (g) of an organic booster blend that has 95 percent curcuminoids (50 mg) from fermented turmeric root extract, in addition to other extracts like rooibos tea and pomegranate. It also contains probiotics, ginger root, and black pepper extract. The black pepper extract is added to increase the absorption of curcumin in the body. Youll also get one gram of fiber and 50 mg of vitamin C, another antioxidant, per serving.
One thing to note is the added probiotic may not be beneficial for all, especially if you already take another probiotic supplement or have underlying gastrointestinal (GI) problems.
This powder is easy to use; simply mix one teaspoon into eight ounces of water or beverage of choice. This can also be a great option for making a turmeric latte or adding to a smoothie, yogurt, or oatmeal. Garden of Life mykind Organic Turmeric Booster is organic, non-GMO, gluten-free, and vegan.
Price at time of publication: $21 per 30 teaspoons ($0.70 per serving)
Form: Powder | Active Ingredient: fermented turmeric root, turmeric root extract, curcuminoids, fermented ginger root, black pepper extract | Dose: 50 mg curcuminoids | Third-Party Certified: Yes | Servings Per Container: 30
Best for Arthritis
Terry Naturally CuraMed
Terry Naturally CuraMed is top pick for a turmeric supplement in softgel form. While not as budget-friendly as other turmeric supplements, Terry Naturally CuraMed is third-party tested and contains a highly bioavailable form of curcumin, BCM-95, which is shown to be more absorbable by the body than plain curcumin and turmeric with black pepper extract.
The BCM-95 form of curcumin has been shown to improve symptoms of depression and rheumatoid arthritis, as well as reduce pain-related symptoms of knee osteoarthritis. In one study, patients with rheumatoid arthritis who were given 500 mg of BCM-95 curcumin twice a day had more improvement in symptoms than those receiving a traditional pain medication. More research is needed, but this suggests curcumin may be an adjunct treatment in addition or as an alternative to traditional treatment for rheumatoid arthritis.
Terry Naturally CuraMed is non-GMO, gluten-free, halal and free of sugar, soy, dairy, and artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives. One softgel delivers 500 mg of curcuminoids.
Price at time of publication: $29 per 30 count ($0.96 per serving)
Form: Softgel | Active Ingredient: Curcumin as BCM-95 | Dose: 750 mg total (500 mg curcuminoids) | Third-Party Certified: Yes | Servings Per Container: 30
Garden of Life mykind Organics Extra Strength Turmeric Inflammatory Response 60 Tablets
- ConsumerLab.com tested and approved
- NSF Certified
- USDA Organic, non-GMO, vegan
Garden of Life mykind Organics Extra Strength Turmeric is your best bet if you follow a vegan diet. Its not only NSF certified, but it was also tested and approved in a 2023 review of turmeric supplements through ConsumerLab.coms voluntary certification program. This verifies that the product contains what it says it contains without potentially harmful contamination.
It contains 553 milligrams (mg) of organic fermented turmeric blend, which includes 100 mg of curcuminoids. In addition, Garden of Life mykind Organics Extra Strength Turmeric has 50 mg of fermented ginger root, seven mg of black pepper extract, and four mg of a probiotic blend. Fermented turmeric and ginger are marketed as increasing the bioavailability of curcumin, but no human studies have compared the absorption of fermented turmeric versus unfermented turmeric.
Ginger root is anti-inflammatory and has been shown to improve digestion, while black pepper extract increases the bodys ability to absorb and use curcumin. This supplement also contains probiotics. Note that the added probiotics could be helpful for some people, may not have an effect at all, or could even cause digestive issues in others. Garden of Life mykind Organics Extra Strength Turmeric is certified USDA organic, non-GMO, vegan, and kosher. One tablet has 100 mg of curcuminoids.
Price at time of publication: $23 ($0.38 per serving)
Form: Tablet | Active Ingredient: turmeric root extract, curcuminoids, fermented turmeric root, fermented ginger root, black pepper fruit extract | Dose: 553 mg turmeric blend (100 mg curcuminoids) | Third-Party Certified: Yes | Servings Per Container: 60
Best with Black Pepper
Doctor’s Best High Absorption Curcumin
- Third-party tested
- Contains BioPerine for increased absorption
- Non-GMO, gluten-free, soy-free
As mentioned, piperine, the main compound found in black pepper extract, can increase bioavailability of curcumin. Doctors Best High Absorption Curcumin delivers six mg of black pepper extract from Bioperinea patented black pepper extract with piperine. Doctors Best is a reputable supplement brand, and this choice is third-party tested.
In addition to six mg of black pepper, this supplement has 1,000 mg of Curcumin C3 Complex, which has three different curcuminoids, including 75-81 percent of curcumin. In a 2022 study, healthy individuals who took 500 mg of Curcumin C3 Complex twice per day had reduced muscle soreness after high-intensity exercise. More studies are needed, but emerging research suggests that Curcumin C3 Complex in combination with piperine may benefit some populations.
Its recommended to take two capsules daily with food. You may want to consider splitting the dose and taking 500 mg (one capsule) at a time versus 1,000 mg at one time, since this is how it is typically given in clinical studies. Taking one capsule at a time is also a good way to test how well you tolerate it since the dose is smaller.
Price at time of publication: $30 for 60 count ($0.50 per serving)
Form: Capsule | Active Ingredient: turmeric extract root, black pepper extract | Dose: 1,000 mg Curcumin C3 Complex | Third-Party Certified: Yes | Servings Per Container: 60
Is a Turmeric Supplement Beneficial?
Due to curcumins anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, researchers have been interested in the impact that turmeric supplements may have on conditions with underlying inflammation, either local inflammation like joint pain or systemic inflammation. Chronic inflammation plays a main role in many chronic diseases like heart disease, diabetes, cancer, Alzheimers disease, and others.
Turmeric supplements impact on health can be difficult to study since the bioavailability (the bodys ability to absorb and use) of curcumin is limited. Many of the turmeric supplements on the market today either contain compounds that enhance the absorption of curcumin, like piperine, found in black pepper, or use a more absorbable form of curcumin. Most of the studies to date are small and limited, so more long-term studies are needed to make definitive conclusions.
However, there is promising, emerging evidence that turmeric supplements may help the following populations:
- People with osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Turmeric supplements may reduce joint pain and stiffness in people with osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis due to the anti-inflammatory properties of curcumin. One meta-analysis found that 1000 mg/day of curcumin from turmeric extracts reduced pain and other inflammation-related symptoms in people with osteoarthritis about the same amount as traditional pain meds like ibuprofen. Curcumin has also been shown to reduce pain and swelling in those with rheumatoid arthritis starting at doses as low as 250 mg of curcumin per day. The sample sizes of these studies was small; more long-term studies are needed to definitively recommend turmeric supplements for these conditions but to date it seems to be safe and effective in place of or alongside traditional pain medications.
- Those with digestive issues. Turmeric supplements may improve indigestion when taken after meals or before bedtime. Curcumin may also help those with ulcerative colitis remain in remission, according to a study where a high dose of 1,000 mg curcumin twice per day was given alongside standard medication to people with ulcerative colitis.
- People with depression. Compared to a placebo, studies show that taking a turmeric supplement can help improve symptoms of depression after 8-12 weeks. Emerging research suggests that turmeric supplements may be promising alongside traditional medication or as an alternative, but more long-term studies are needed.
- Those with neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimers. The research for turmeric and Alzheimer’s disease prevention continues to build, making it a potentially worthwhile and helpful supplement for anyone with a family history of this neurodegenerative disease. Its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties help reduce brain inflammation and damage from oxidative stress, while research has shown it can also reduce the formation of amyloid plaques in the brain, a key contributor to Alzheimer’s disease, says Kelsey Kunik, RDN.
- People at risk for heart disease or who have heart disease. People at risk of heart disease or who have heart disease could benefit from taking turmeric supplements. Several studies have found that curcumin can help lower cholesterol and reduce atherosclerosis or narrowing of the arteries, says Kunik. In a study involving patients undergoing coronary artery bypass graft surgery, the patients who received four grams per day of curcuminoids three days before surgery and five days after surgery had a 65 percent reduced incidence of a heart attack than those who were given a placebo. The curcuminoid group also had lower levels of inflammation markers in their blood, Kunik says. Its important to note that turmeric can act as a blood thinner so be aware of this if taking blood thinning medications.
Who May Not Benefit From Turmeric Supplements
Turmeric is safe for most people when consumed in spice or tea form because the amount of curcumin is much lower than the amount found in supplements. Since turmeric supplements contain a higher dose of curcumin, they are not safe for some populations, including the following.
- People with blood disorders or those taking blood thinning medication. Turmeric is a blood thinner, so its not recommended to take turmeric supplements if you are also taking a blood thinner like Coumadin (Warfarin). Doing this could increase the risk of bleeding.
- Those with hypoglycemia or taking blood sugar-lowering medications. Turmeric may help with some symptoms of type 2 diabetes, but always talk to a healthcare professional before taking this supplement if you take diabetes medication. Turmeric supplements can lower blood sugar in both healthy individuals and those with diabetes. Therefore, if you have hypoglycemia or are taking medications that lower blood sugar, it is not always safe to take a turmeric supplement, as it could cause your blood sugar to drop too low.
- People who are pregnant or breastfeeding. Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should avoid high doses of turmeric from supplements, although eating foods with turmeric is perfectly safe, says Kunik.
- People with or at risk of kidney stones. Individuals with kidney stones should consider their consumption of turmeric, as it contains oxalates which can contribute to the formation of kidney stones, says Moushumi Mukherjee, MS, RDN.
How We Select Supplements
Our team works hard to be transparent about why we recommend certain supplements; you can read more about our dietary supplement methodology here.
We support supplements that are evidence-based and rooted in science. We value certain product attributes that we find to be associated with the highest quality products. We prioritize products that are third-party tested and certified by one of three independent, third-party certifiers: USP, NSF, or ConsumerLab.com.
It’s important to note that the FDA does not review dietary supplements for safety and effectiveness before they go to market. Our team of experts has created a detailed, science-backed methodology to choose the supplements we recommend.
Experts we interviewed for choosing the best turmeric supplements include:
- Sarah Anzlovar, MS, RD, registered dietitian and freelance writer
- Kelsey Kunik, RDN, registered dietitian and sustainable food blogger
- Moushumi Mukherjee, MS, RDN, registered dietitian
What to Look For in Turmeric Supplements
Supplements that are third-party tested are sent to a lab where they are tested to ensure they contain what they say they contain and are not contaminated with specific high-risk, common contaminants. However, its important to note:
- Third-party testing does not test to see if a product is effective or safe for everyone, and it does not ensure the supplement will not interact with other supplements or medications.
- Not all third-party testing is created equal. It is not uncommon for supplement companies to pay labs for certificates after conducting minimal to no testing.
- The third-party certifications we can trust are ConsumerLab.com, NSF, and USP. However, these certifications are difficult to obtain and/or expensive for manufacturers, so many companies choose not to get their products tested by one of these three organizations.
- Sometimes products tested by these three companies are more expensive to try to offset the cost they pay for certification.
- Just because a supplement is not tested by one of these three companies, it does not mean its a bad product. We recommend doing some research on the reputability of the manufacturer and calling up the manufacturer and their testing lab to determine their protocols and decide if you feel comfortable consuming the supplement.
Turmeric supplements contain curcuminoids and curcumin in various forms. Since curcumin is poorly absorbed on its own, some supplements combine it with BioPerine, a patented black pepper extract, that is shown to improve absorption. Other formulations that have been developed and tested for optimal bioavailability and are included in this roundup are Meriva, NovaSOL, BCM-95, and Longvida.
Turmeric supplements come in capsule, softgel, gummy, liquid, and powder form. These different forms can have curcumin on its own or with added ingredients for improved absorption.
Ingredients & Potential Interactions
It is essential to carefully read the ingredient list and nutrition facts panel of a supplement to know which ingredients and how much of each ingredient is included, relative to the recommended daily value of that ingredient. Please bring the supplement label to a healthcare provider to review the different ingredients contained in the supplement and any potential interactions between these ingredients and other supplements and medications you are taking.
Turmeric contains oxalates, which are natural compounds found in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Oxalates bind with calcium and can form kidney stones, so individuals who are prone to kidney stones may want to avoid turmeric supplements.
Turmeric supplements are known to interfere with blood thinning medications, since curcumin has anticoagulant properties. Avoid turmeric supplements if taking aspirin, Plavix, Coumadin, Xarelto, or other blood thinners.
Turmeric can also lower blood sugar levels, so should be avoided or taken with caution if also taking blood sugar-lowering medications.
There is currently no standard dosage recommendation for turmeric supplements. What is known is that the amount of turmeric consumed from food is much less than the amount found in supplements. Most supplements range from doses of 250 mg – 1,500 mg.
The best dose to take depends on the condition you are trying to prevent or treat. For optimal absorption and benefit, take turmeric twice a day alongside a meal that has fat in it. Fat increases the absorption of curcumin.
A higher dose isnt necessarily better because curcumin is poorly absorbed in the body, which is one reason its difficult to study turmeric supplements. However, piperine, the main active component in black pepper, has been shown to increase the bodys absorption of curcumin. There are also specific curcumin formulations used in supplements that enhance absorption.
How Much Turmeric Is Too Much?
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved curcuminoids as generally recognized as safe (GRAS), and research studies have found that turmeric supplements are safe and well tolerated in most individuals, even in higher doses of 4,000-12,000 mg/day. However, most studies have found benefits for various conditions in doses of 250 mg – 1,500 mg per day, and most supplements contain no more than 1,000 mg per serving. So, its recommended to go by the serving on the label, as well as consult with your healthcare provider to figure out the best dose for you.
Both the JECFA (The Joint United Nations and World Health Organization Expert Committee on Food Additives) and EFSA (European Food Safety Authority) recommend Allowable Daily Intake (ADI) of 0-3 milligram/ kilogram of body weight for curcumin. Some people may experience mild side effects such as diarrhea, headache, rash, and yellow stool from taking turmeric supplements ranging from 500-1,200 mg per day or higher.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is it safe to take turmeric everyday?
Turmeric supplements are safe for most people to take in doses of 250-1,500 mg/day for two to three months. This is the dose and time period used in most clinical studies. Long-term studies are lacking, so it is unclear whether it is safe to consume turmeric supplements over a longer period of time. Daily consumption of turmeric supplements may not be safe for some populations, including those on blood thinning medications, among others listed above.
What are the side effects of taking turmeric supplements?
Side effects of taking too much tumeric can include diarrhea and digestive discomfort; there are people who can be allergic to turmeric or may experience allergic reactions. It could also cause any unusual or non stop bleeding since turmeric has anticoagulant and antiplatelet properties, which are show to increase the risk of bleeding especially if consumed in high amounts along side blood thinning medications, says Mukherjee.
How many times a day can you take turmeric?
Studies typically use 250 to 500 milligrams of curcumin two to three times per day, which appears to be safe and possibly effective. However, most studies are short term, so we don’t know if there are any risks to long-term daily usage, says Anzlovar.
What is the difference between turmeric and curcumin supplements?
Curcumin is an active compound found in turmeric. Turmeric supplements may include turmeric root or powder that contains curcumin, whereas curcumin supplements are typically a curcumin extract that doesn’t also contain other parts of turmeric, says Anzlovar.
What is the best form of turmeric?
Turmeric supplements come in many different forms. You’ll want to look for curcuminoids that contain both the turmeric root and extract. Turmeric root powder may not be as absorbable by the body as some branded forms that have been encapsulated. Pepperine, from black pepper, can also increase absorption, so supplements that include pepperine may be helpful, says Anzlovar. Some formulations, such as NovaSOL Curcumin, Meriva, BCM-95, and Longvida can help increase bioavailability. Taking turmeric supplements with a meal containing fat can also help increase absorption.
Why Trust Verywell Health
Lainey Younkin, MS, RD, LDN is a registered dietitian with a masters in Nutrition Communication from the Tufts Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy. Through both her private practice and freelance writing, shes passionate about translating nutrition science into recommendations that are understandable and practical for busy people who want to optimize their health through food and nutrition.
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