Turmeric is a spice that comes from the Curcuma longa plant. It contains a compound known as curcumin, which is antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, and may have health benefits.

However, high quality research on turmeric tea is limited. Additionally, curcumin has low bioavailability on its own. This means the body has difficulty absorbing it.

Piperine, a compound in black pepper, can increase the bioavailability of curcumin by 2,000%.

This article looks at various health benefits of drinking turmeric tea.

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There is little scientific analysis specifically on turmeric tea. Much of the research on turmeric’s health benefits focuses on extracts or supplements.

However, turmeric tea will still contain some curcumin. The exact amount — and how much the body can absorb — will vary.

Estimates suggest this compound makes up to 10% of turmeric powder. How a person brews the tea and whether it contains other ingredients may affect how beneficial it is.

The following sections look at research on the benefits of turmeric more generally, which may help:

Reduce arthritis symptoms

A 2021 review of previous clinical trials found that turmeric extract may alleviate the symptoms of knee osteoarthritis. It appears to work effectively in comparison to nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, with 12% fewer adverse effects.

However, the researchers found a risk of bias in the research they examined, so more high quality studies are necessary.

Maintain cardiovascular health

A 2019 review of previous research notes that the curcumin in turmeric reduces oxidative stress. Oxidative stress is when a person has too many harmful molecules, known as free radicals, in the body. Too many free radicals can damage cells and is involved in the onset of several diseases, including cardiovascular disease (CVD).

Previous studies have also found that turmeric or curcumin may improve markers of cardiovascular health in people at risk for CVD, such as their cholesterol levels and C-reactive protein.

Reduce some effects of polycystic ovary syndrome

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a condition that can elevate the risk of diabetes. It does this by reducing insulin sensitivity, which can ultimately lead to high blood sugar levels.

The 2020 review notes there are several previous studies showing that curcumin improves insulin sensitivity in those with PCOS. A 2018 study gave participants 500-milligram (mg) supplements daily for 6 weeks.

Another study from 2022 gave the same dose of curcumin for 12 weeks and also found a reduction in fasting blood sugar levels, low-density lipoprotein or “bad” cholesterol, and body weight.

Help with metabolic syndrome

Metabolic syndrome is a group of related conditions that include obesity, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol.

A 2019 meta-analysis of previous research found evidence that curcumin may help reduce body mass index and waist circumference in people with metabolic syndrome. Curcumin may also reduce leptin levels, which is a hormone that regulates appetite and fat storage in the body.

However, the authors note that many of the studies used unformulated curcumin, which has low bioavailability, and were of low to moderate quality.

Improve liver function

Turmeric or curcumin may help benefit liver function in those with liver disease.

A 2021 randomized controlled trial involving people with non-alcohol-related fatty liver disease found that participants who consumed 2 grams (g) of turmeric per day had lower liver enzymes than the control group, who did not consume any turmeric. Triglyceride and cholesterol levels also decreased.

However, there are also reports that high doses of turmeric and curcumin could potentially cause liver injuries. A 2020 study identified 23 cases in Italy, although the people involved were also taking other medications or supplements.

It is not yet clear what exactly caused these liver injuries. That said, the people who sustained the injuries were taking higher quantities of curcumin than a person would typically get from food or drink.

There is no specific recommended daily intake of turmeric tea. Generally, though, health authorities consider turmeric to be nontoxic in moderate amounts.

Previous studies have found that doses of curcumin up to 6 g per day are safe for 4 to 7 weeks, although higher doses may be more likely to cause side effects.

No studies have evaluated the safety of turmeric tea. However, some research has looked at the safety of more potent curcumin and turmeric supplements.

A 2022 analysis of turmeric supplements in Brazil found the composition of the products the authors examined varied significantly, with some containing toxic heavy metals and little curcumin.

Another analysis from 2020 in Bangladesh found that most of the samples had low amounts of heavy metals, except for one, which had twice the upper limit of lead as set by the World Health Organization (WHO).

This highlights the need to choose supplements and spice powders carefully, as they do not have the same safety regulations in the same way as medications.

There is also a lack of longer trials on the effects of long-term curcumin supplementation and ongoing research into a potential link between curcumin and liver injury.

A person can brew turmeric tea using fresh turmeric root, dried turmeric pieces, or turmeric powder.

Below is a 1-cup recipe for turmeric tea:


  • 1 cup of water or milk
  • 1 tsp of turmeric
  • 1 tsp of cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp of black pepper
  • 1 tsp of honey, optional


  1. Bring water or milk to a boil.
  2. Add the other ingredients to the liquid and turn off the heat.
  3. Steep for 10 to 15 minutes.

After completing these steps, a person may want to strain the tea into a container and allow it to cool before drinking.

Extra additions

Many people put additional ingredients into their turmeric tea to change the taste, such as:

  • coconut milk
  • ghee
  • ginger
  • cardamom
  • nutmeg
  • anise
  • vanilla
  • maple syrup

People can also mix the spice with another brewed tea, such as green tea or black tea.

Below are some common questions about turmeric tea.

What are the side effects of drinking turmeric tea?

Health authorities say that turmeric is generally safe to consume in moderation. However, some people may experience an upset stomach, nausea, or diarrhea.

It is also possible some may be allergic to turmeric or that more potent turmeric or curcumin supplements could have adverse health effects, such as drug interactions.

Can I drink turmeric tea every day?

There is not enough research to establish whether drinking turmeric tea every day is safe. However, its low amounts within tea may be less likely to cause adverse effects.

Is it OK to drink turmeric tea at night?

This depends on whether the tea contains any sources of caffeine, such as green or black tea leaves.

Tea that only contains steeped turmeric will not contain any caffeine. As a result, it may be suitable to drink at night. People can check the label on premade tea products to check whether they contain caffeine.

Turmeric is a spice that contains curcumin. Research shows that curcumin may have several health benefits and may help lower the risk of certain health conditions.

However, there is very little research on turmeric tea specifically. The amount of curcumin in turmeric tea may vary significantly depending on the strength and brewing methods a person uses. On its own, curcumin is also not very bioavailable.

People interested in using curcumin or turmeric to help prevent or manage medical conditions should speak with a doctor.

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