Turmeric for IBS: All You Need to Know

turmeric for IBS

IBS affects between 25 and 45 million people in the United States. About 2 in 3 IBS sufferers are female. About 1 in 3 IBS sufferers are male. Based on a survey taken by the Functional Bowel Disorder Severity Index (IFFGD), a considerable proportion – 35 percent to 40 percent– of people who register IBS in the community are male. About 60 percent to 65 percent of individuals who report IBS are female. As for IBS, there is no particular medication or treatment, and the most healthy cure is usually supportive therapy. Curcumin and turmeric extract pills improve IBS symptoms, especially abdominal pain and life quality. Current animal and human studies have confirmed curcumin or turmeric’s medicinal potential in treating IBS. This evidence also revealed that turmeric might effectively ease IBS-linked symptoms independently or fused with other beneficial and herbal products.

In this article, we’ll talk about what turmeric (curcumin) is and whether or not it could help with irritable bowel syndrome symptoms like abdominal pain and bloating—and then give you some tips on how to take it safely if you decide to try it out yourself!

Turmeric for IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome)

Curcumin has potent antimicrobial, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory belongings. Studies illustrate that curcumin owns potent antiviral, antifungal, and antibacterial action. The antibacterial effects may help reduce the “harmful” bacteria in the gut, one of the probable reasons for IBS. Besides, turmeric’s best-known feature is its capacity to decrease bodily inflammation. Since intestinal inflammation is assumed to be one possible cause of IBS, curcumin seems to fight this instantly.

What is IBS?

This common digestive disorder affects up to 20 percent of the population. It causes abdominal pain, bloating, constipation, diarrhea, or both. The symptoms of IBS can range from mild to severe. You may also have days when your symptoms are not so bad, but they sometimes become more severe. The most common symptoms include:

  • Abdominal pain or discomfort
  • Nausea
  • Bloating and gas
  • Change in bowel habit
  • Diarrhea or constipation (more than three bowel movements per day) or alternating between the two.
  • Data shows an increased risk of unnecessary extra-abdominal and abdominal surgery in IBS patients. For example, hysterectomy or ovarian surgery has been informed in female patients with IBS as high as 47 to 55 percent.

The severity of irritable bowel syndrome differs from person to person; some people may find their symptoms manageable, while others find them debilitating. Overall, about 10 percent of adults in the United States have a diagnosis of irritable bowel syndrome at any point in time, and 15-20 percent report having had it sometime during their life, according to Mayo Clinic research published in 2022. Women tend to have IBS more often than men do; one study found that women with IBS were twice as likely as men with IBS to experience chronic abdominal pain after eating foods containing probiotics.

Other causes of IBS

IBS is a chronic condition, but it can be managed. The disease is caused by various factors, including stress, anxiety, and depression; food allergies; lactose intolerance; and certain medications. There are many treatments for IBS, including diet and lifestyle changes. If you believe you have IBS, seek medical treatment from your doctor or gastroenterologist.

What does the Research say about Turmeric (curcumin) for IBS?

Some people can use curcumin as an alternative treatment for IBS. For example, studies have examined whether curcumin can replace other drugs used to treat IBS symptoms, such as dicyclomine and alosetron (these drugs are called anti-motility agents). Researchers found that both forms of treatment were equally effective in reducing symptoms such as abdominal pain and bloating in people with diarrhea-predominant IBS (D-IBS).

Remember before moving forward!

Point #1: IBS differs from IBD (Inflammatory Bowel Disease). Although people may undergo the same symptoms, those suffering from IBS will not experience the exact inflammation or tissue harm that IBD sufferers confront.

Point #2: IBS is not commonly linked to inflammation. But reliable evidence suggests that individuals with IBS can notice an uptick in the body’s inflammatory response. This finding provides a potential alternative therapy.

Why is Turmeric Good for IBS Patients?

Turmeric powder and fresh turmeric on wooden background.

#1 Effects of turmeric on IBS symptoms

A study including around 700 healthy volunteers aimed to evaluate the impacts of turmeric on IBS symptoms.
Among these volunteers, one-tablet group and a two-tablet group.


  • Between screening and baseline, IBS bulk decreased by 41  and 57 percent
  • Between baseline and behind the treatment, there was a significant decline of 53 and 60 percent
  • 22 and 25 percent reduction in abdominal pain and discomfort

The research also found that two-thirds of all volunteers with IBS reported improved symptoms and underwent more good bowel routines.

#2 Turmeric-curcumin duo with essential fennel oil

Another study sampled a turmeric-curcumin duo with essential fennel oil. The thought behind this pair was that turmeric could relieve inflammation. At the same time, the antispasmodic effect of fennel can settle automatic intestinal muscle pangs. 121 patients with IBS signs varying from mild to moderate partook in 30-day treatment duration.

Results: The effects showed that the blend of curcumin and fennel was well-tolerated, safe, and yielded effective IBS symptom alleviation.

#3 Curcumin showed improved results in behavioral tests

One research squad evaluated that IBS affects 10-15 percent of the globe’s inhabitants. Anxiety, depression, and other stress-related psychiatric disorders are major contributors to IBS. Hence, researchers skimmed to determine how curcumin could improve the “brain-gut axis” in a rat sample. Since 2015, current research has continued to emphasize the various healing prospects of turmeric. This animal study examined the influence of turmeric on IBS and the mood disorders that usually accompany it, such as anxiety and depression.

Results: Curcumin also had a flattering effect on the rats’ intestinal system. Researchers saw that curcumin augmented the levels of distinct proteins and neurotransmitters in the rats’ brains that affect mood. They consider that the proteins and neurotransmitters that signal the brain may also signal the intestines. The rats who received curcumin showed improved results in behavioral tests.

#4 Curcumin Therapeutic Effects on Digestive Disorders:

Additionally, research dissected curcumin’s medicinal effects on various digestive conditions. In pre-clinical practices, turmeric exhibited the potential to shield the GI tract (gastrointestinal tract) through its anti-inflammatory action.

Results: It showed a mastery to lower intestinal spasms linked to anxiety. While turmeric’s healthy effects reviewed all the boxes, this study did not induce any statistically important transformations in the IBS batch. Regardless, it eased symptoms in 116 patients with dyspepsia (abdominal discomfort, flatulence, epigastric pain, etc.).

#5 Curcumin’s Potential to Treat Gastrointestinal Disorders

A meta-analysis diagnosed five randomized and controlled trials. Three tests, including 326 patients, witnessed a restorative effect while taking curcumin for IBS. An animal study investigated curcumin’s potential to cure anything linked to gastrointestinal disturbance. After a single dose of curcumin, the rats in the study underwent a reduction in the length of their small intestine. This means that curcumin can soothe irregular intestinal contractions.

Results: The results were not statistically influential, but the slight improvements in IBS were impressive. Curcumin’s capability to modulate gut microbiota correspondingly played a vital role in the studies. Likewise, turmeric’s anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties grabbed central attention. Unexplored research suggests that curcumin help treat IBS and different conditions, such as diarrhea and abdominal cramps.

#6 Curcumin can fight Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth

  1. The research on turmeric is hopeful. Participants in one study consumed every day for eight weeks.
  2. In studies completed using turmeric for thyroid function, experimenters comprehended that hypothyroidism and IBS often include small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO).

Results: Curcumin has displayed that it can fight this issue, supporting the reduction of the symptoms of both ailments. They notified slighter abdominal pain and discomfort and increased quality of living. Nevertheless, the researchers commented that a placebo-controlled study is needed to confirm these results further.

How to Use Turmeric for IBS?

When treating gut and intestinal inflammation, you’ll get enough curcumin in your diet. Adding more organic turmeric powder to your meals is not ideal for treating UC. Since its curcuminoid content is only 3.14 percent on average. An encapsulated turmeric dietary supplement is the most promising treatment so far. It likely will only be effective if it contains piperine (black pepper extract) in the form of BioPerine. Best-rated turmeric brands also include Ginger, a cousin-spice of turmeric that increases the absorption of turmeric by 90 percent. Previous studies have suggested that ginger effectively treats gastrointestinal ailments, has antiemetic as well as pain-soothing effects, and is one of the most widely used herbal medicines by IBS patients. For your ease. AMVital Turmeric Ginger & BioPerine Veggie Capsules are best suited for IBS patients with standardly safe turmeric dosage.


You should add in small doses at a time. Fresh or powdered turmeric can stain clothes and skin, so be attentive when using it in the kitchen.
Add these to your weekly recipes:

  • Mix turmeric into curd and cheese, or add it to daily smoothies.
  • Sprinkle it onto savory dishes, such as Turmeric Rice, curries, and soaps.
  • Use it to make a salad gravy or mayonnaise paste.
  • Make a hot turmeric tea or a refreshing cold drink using turmeric, ginger, black pepper, lemon, and herbs.

Always take it with Black Pepper!
Using turmeric with black pepper (piperine) increases its absorption and makes it more effective for health. It carries less than a teaspoon of piperine powder for turmeric to have an absorption effect.

A note about safety!

  1. If you don’t have any of the conditions listed above, curcumin can be taken safely. As a general rule, it’s best to take curcumin with food. This will help ensure that it is absorbed by your body and helps prevent any side effects from occurring.
  2. Curcumin is a safe supplement to use if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. It is also considered safe during the first two trimesters of pregnancy as long as it’s taken at the recommended doses and frequency. If you have gallstones or a bleeding disorder, talk to your doctor before taking curcumin supplements (or any other supplements).
  3. If you’ve been struggling with IBS symptoms, it may be worth talking to your doctor about curcumin supplements or other natural treatments. Curcumin has been shown in some cases to help with IBS symptoms like abdominal pain and bloating. However, more research must be done before its effectiveness can be confirmed.
  4. There are also safety concerns around taking curcumin supplements. In large doses, the chemical can have side effects such as nausea and diarrhea—two common symptoms of IBS!


Turmeric is a perennial herb with long-hailed usage in Ayurvedic medicine and Indian Kitchens for thousands of years. It possesses three curcuminoids; among them, the most effective is bright-yellow curcumin having anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. The bioactive curcumin in turmeric has been shown to help with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) symptoms. However,  there is some evidence that curcumin could be helpful for IBS, but more research is needed. If you have symptoms of IBS and want to try a natural remedy, talk with your doctor about the pros and cons before taking curcumin as part of your treatment plan.


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Taiba Tariq

Taiba Tariq is a healthcare nutrition hobbyist, enthusiastic about researching healthcare & skincare news while analyzing the latest and science-backed evidence about nutrition, skin care, and supplements. She wants to help people regain their beauty, health, and well-being through natural means.

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