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Golden Milk is a warming beverage with many health benefits and a rich history rooted in traditional Indian Ayurvedic medicine. This comforting drink has recently gained popularity in the west due to its flavor, beautiful color, and health benefits like supporting immunity and reducing inflammation. In this article, we’ll explore the history and health benefits of Golden Milk and I’ll provide you with a simple recipe to prepare this yummy elixir at home.

A Brief History

Golden Milk has deep-seated roots in the ancient system of Ayurvedic medicine where it is known as ‘haldi doodh.’ Turmeric, the standout ingredient of this elixir, holds a revered place in Ayurveda due to its potential to alleviate ailments, enhance vitality, and promote overall health (4). It is celebrated for its ‘sattvic’ nature, meaning it is thought to increase energy, happiness, calmness, and mental clarity. For thousands of years, both Golden Milk and turmeric have been hailed for their numerous health properties. 

Superstar Ingredients

Golden Milk’s star ingredients, turmeric and ginger, are especially well known for their anti-inflammatory properties. 

 

Turmeric 

Turmeric – the source of this drink’s beautiful golden hue – contains a bioactive compound called curcumin, Modern science has isolated curcumin as the main active compound in turmeric and found that it has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and antimicrobial properties. Researchers have found that curcumin has beneficial effects on oxidative and inflammatory conditions, metabolic syndrome, arthritis, anxiety, hyperlipidemia, and more (1).

Ginger

Ginger is great for soothing inflammation and especially cherished for its role in managing occasional digestive issues and nausea (2,3). In fact, ginger is often the first-line remedy for pregnant mamas dealing with GERD and morning sickness. 

For more on Turmeric & Ginger during pregnancy, see: Herbs For Pain Relief In Pregnancy & Lactation – Dr. Green Mom.

Health Benefits By Ingredient

Each ingredient provides additional health benefits.

  • Turmeric: An anti-inflammatory, antioxidant powerhouse (1).
  • Ginger: Adds a spicy kick, soothes occasional inflammation, and may help relieve digestive discomfort (2,3). 
  • Cinnamon: Provides warmth and a hint of sweetness while offering antioxidants and potential anti-inflammatory benefits (5).
  • Black Pepper: Adds a little more spicy warmth to this drink. Amazingly, the piperine found in pepper enhances the absorption of curcumin from turmeric by 2000x (6).
  • Coconut Oil: Contains healthy fats and adds richness.
  • Coconut Milk: Provides Medium Chain Fatty-acids (MCT). 
  • Honey: Provides sweetness and anti-inflammatory & antimicrobial benefits (7).

My Favorite Golden Milk Recipe

This easy-to-follow recipe will guide you in making your own Golden Milk, also known as a Turmeric Latte.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of coconut milk (coconut milk is my favorite for this recipe, but any milk will do)
  • 1/2 tablespoon of coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon of ground turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon of Ginger-Ease™ or ground ginger, or 1/2 inch of fresh ginger (peeled)
  • 1/4 teaspoon of ground cinnamon or a cinnamon stick
  • 2-3 peppercorns or a pinch of ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 1-2 tablespoons of honey or maple syrup (remember, no honey under age 1!)

Preparation:

  1. In a small pot, whisk together milk, coconut oil, and spices.
  2. Bring the mixture to a gentle boil while stirring continuously.
  3. If using ground spices, simmer for 2-3 minutes;  if using whole spices, simmer for 8-10 minutes. Whisk frequently during the simmering process and just before serving to create a frothy texture.
  4. Top with cinnamon.

Tip: Top your Golden Milk with homemade marshmallows

Summary

Golden Milk is more than just a trendy beverage, it’s a wholesome drink that has been valued for its health benefits for centuries. Ginger and turmeric – the superstars of this recipe – are mostly responsible for the health promoting properties of this elixir. Whether you’re sipping Golden Milk for its potential anti-inflammatory properties, soothing warmth, or delicious taste, it will be a welcome addition to your winter routine.

References:

  1. Hewlings, S. J., & Kalman, D. S. (2017). Curcumin: A Review of Its Effects on Human Health. Foods (Basel, Switzerland), 6(10), 92. https://doi.org/10.3390/foods6100092
  2. Ballester, P., Cerdá, B., Arcusa, R., Marhuenda, J., Yamedjeu, K., & Zafrilla, P. (2022). Effect of Ginger on Inflammatory Diseases. Molecules (Basel, Switzerland), 27(21), 7223. https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules27217223
  3. Lindblad, A. J., & Koppula, S. (2016). Ginger for nausea and vomiting of pregnancy. Canadian family physician Medecin de famille canadien, 62(2), 145.
  4. Prasad, S., & Aggarwal, B. B. (2011). Turmeric, the Golden Spice. Nih.gov; CRC Press/Taylor & Francis. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK92752/
  5. Kawatra, P., & Rajagopalan, R. (2015). Cinnamon: Mystic powers of a minute ingredient. Pharmacognosy research, 7(Suppl 1), S1–S6. https://doi.org/10.4103/0974-8490.157990
  6. Hewlings, S. J., & Kalman, D. S. (2017). Curcumin: A Review of Its Effects on Human Health. Foods (Basel, Switzerland), 6(10), 92. https://doi.org/10.3390/foods6100092
  7. Samarghandian, S., Farkhondeh, T., & Samini, F. (2017). Honey and Health: A Review of Recent Clinical Research. Pharmacognosy research, 9(2), 121–127. https://doi.org/10.4103/0974-8490.204647
Dr. Green Mom

Dr. Mayer is a naturopathic medical doctor and an expert in nutrition and wellness as it relates to pediatrics and families. Her passion for prevention of disease as cure fueled her desire to immerse herself into specializing in adult onset chronic conditions, as well as childhood chronic illness.

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