By TAP Integrative

As obesity rates rise around the world, so do associated conditions like diabetes and metabolic syndrome. Metabolic syndrome, characterized by hypertension, high triglycerides, low HDL cholesterol, and insulin resistance, is a risk factor for cancer and cardiometabolic diseases.

A significant feature of metabolic syndrome is excess visceral fat. This particular type of fat secretes inflammatory substances that can lead to abdominal obesity and insulin resistance. That’s why treating insulin resistance is such a critical part of any effort to reduce abdominal obesity. And, reducing obesity is key to cutting risk of metabolic syndrome, diabetes and other related diseases.

Curcumin, a component of the rhizome extract of Curcuma longa, is known to reduce the expression of inflammatory cytokines in human fat tissue. Moreover, it has been shown to have anti-hyperglycemic and insulin sensitizing effects in individuals with prediabetes. Given these effects, a group of Italian researchers designed a randomized, controlled study to determine curcumin’s effects in overweight people with metabolic syndrome. They enrolled 44 subjects, all of whom were unable to lose 2% or more of their body weight after 30 days of diet and lifestyle intervention. The researchers randomized these subjects for a further 30 days to receive either 800mg of 95% curcumin complexed with phosphatidylserine in phytosome form and blended with 8mg/dose of piperine from Piper nigrum extract or 400mg pure phosphatidylserine. Outcomes were measured at enrollment, at 30 and at 60 days.

Curcumin had significant effects. Compared to phosphatidlyserine, subjects taking curcumin experienced average weight loss of 4.91% compared to 1.88% in phosphatidylserine subjects. Additionally, curcum subjects had an average percentage body fat loss of 8.43% compared to 0.70% in the control group. Curcumin subjects experienced  reduced waistline by 4.14% compared to 2.36% in control group. The hip circumference decreased by an average of 2.51% in the curcumin subjects compared to 0.74% in controls. Finally, BMI in the curcumin subjects decreased 6.42% compared to 2.10% in controls. Neither treatment presented any tolerability issues.

This is a small study, and its results are only preliminary. However, it does suggest that a bioavailable form of curcumin may be a useful tool in the fight against obesity and metabolic syndrome.


Di Pierro F, Bressan A, Ranaldi D, Rapacioli G, Giacomelli L, Bertuccioli A.

Potential role of bioavailable curcumin in weight loss and omental adipose tissue decrease: preliminary data of a randomized, controlled trial in overweight people with metabolic syndrome. Preliminary study. Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci. 2015;19:4195-4202.

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*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease