Curcumin, a biologically active compound found in turmeric, is well-known for its immense therapeutic potential. However, the low water solubility of curcumin greatly limits its bioavailability and effectiveness. Various curcumin formulations, including capsules, tablets, powder nanoparticles, liquid micelles, and others, have been designed to enhance its bioavailability and consequent bio-efficacy.
When looking for a curcumin supplement to incorporate into your daily regimen, liquid turmeric vs. capsules is one of the first questions to answer. In this post, we compare the two forms of curcumin supplements and their relative efficacy to help you determine the most appropriate formulation for your lifestyle.
Because curcumin is a fat-soluble molecule, its rapid metabolism in the body can be restricted by encapsulating the molecule within a hydrophobic phase, such as pure oil, oil droplets, solid fat particles, and hydrophobic protein particles. Whether formulating liquid turmeric or capsules, the objective is to trap curcumin within edible microparticles or nanoparticles, such as micelles, liposomes, solid lipid particles, emulsions, and biopolymer particles to enhance its bioavailability.
Liquid turmeric is an emulsion (that is, two liquids that won’t mix and are stabilized by an emulsifier). Liquid turmeric or a curcumin-loaded emulsion has a yellow-orange, clear-to-milky appearance and is widely used for the encapsulation, stabilization, and delivery of curcumin. The bioaccessibility of curcumin in an emulsion format has been found to be greater than non-encapsulated curcumin.
Consuming curcumin with food that contains digestible lipids, such as milk or adding turmeric oil or a small amount of piperine (the active component found in black pepper), is one of the early formulation approaches to develop liquid turmeric and enhance its absorption in the body. Novel formulations, such as liquid droplet nano-micelles have been shown to have the highest bioavailability, with more than 400 times higher absorption compared to unformulated curcumin.
Curcumin encapsulation refers to using an efficient carrier system that preserves its physiochemical properties during transit through the stomach. Recent developments have enabled the encapsulation of curcumin by nanocarriers, such as protein-based nanocarriers, cyclodextrins, nanogels, and liposomes. Nanocarriers provide a high surface area-to-volume ratio, resulting in higher solubility and dissolution rates of the curcumin molecule. The small particle size prolongs the integrity of the encapsulated curcumin in circulation and allows for targeted delivery of the nutrient molecules.
Curcumin-loaded microemulsions containing curcumin, oil, and a surfactant (a chemical compound that decreases surface tension between curcumin trapped in oil molecules) are also used to encapsulate and release curcumin. The curcumin, oil, and surfactant are mixed together and then incorporated into pellets or capsules. Such a mixture forms a microemulsion after coming in contact with stomach fluids. Animal feeding studies show excellent physical and chemical stability of such formulations, resulting in a 17-fold increase in the oral bioavailability of this form of curcumin compared to the non-encapsulated form.
|Liquid Turmeric||Curcumin Capsule|
|Strategy||Liquid turmeric, an emulsion, traps curcumin molecules in digestible lipids like milk, oil, and others to enhance absorption.||Encapsulating curcumin in particle-sized nanocarriers prolongs the molecules' integrity during circulation, giving them greater solubility and targeted delivery.|
|Efficacy||Liquid droplet nano-micelles have the highest bioavailability, with 400 times higher absorption than unformulated curcumin.||In animal studies, curcumin-loaded microemulsions show an increased oral bioavailability 17 times greater than non-encapsulated forms. Such microemulsions are frequently enclosed in pellets or capsules.|
Whether it is liquid turmeric or encapsulated turmeric, the efficacy of a curcumin supplement lies in the active ingredient used in the formulation. Tetrahydrocurcumin, a biologically active, colorless, or white-colored metabolite of curcumin, exhibits similar pharmacological properties to those of curcumin but displays superior bioavailability in tissue and plasma.* Tetrahydrocurcumin has been found to be more stable than curcumin with a longer degradation half-life in plasma and cell culture medium. Formulating nutritional supplements containing tetrahydrocurcumin as the active ingredient enhances the therapeutic potential to support various health functions.*
TetraCumin®, a Tesseract nutritional supplement formulated with tetrahydrocurcumin, further enhances the bioavailability of the active ingredient through our revolutionary CyLoc® - DexKey® nutrient delivery technology. This smart delivery system encases each molecule of the active ingredient, masking its unpalatable taste and odor while preserving its integrity during transit through the GI tract. Tesseract’s revolutionary nutrient delivery enables the release of active ingredient molecules at the desired point in the intestinal tract to accomplish maximum absorption and efficacy. The advanced formulation of TetraCumin® promotes several health functions, including immune response, cardiovascular health, gastrointestinal environment, lipid profiles, musculoskeletal system, and others.*
The power of Tesseract supplements lies in the proprietary science of proven nutrients and unrivaled smart delivery, making them the most effective for supporting musculoskeletal health and immune health.*
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