Updated: Jul 16, 2019
If there is one drink that could fix it all, it would definitely have to be Golden milk or haldi doodh (turmeric milk) as we call it in my native tongue, Punjabi. Growing up if I was ever experiencing anything from fighting a cold to dealing with skin issues, menstrual pain, muscular pain, insomnia or even a sprained ankle, the first thing my Mom and Nani would say is to take some turmeric.
As Indians, turmeric is literally our bandaid for everything, maybe even a broken heart!
This magically deep yellow-orange spice native to Asia has an active ingredient called curcumin which makes it antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-arthritic, and anti-cancerous.
So essential it can:
Boosts the immune system
Reduces symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis
Reduce muscular pain
Help with headaches/ migraines
Ease menstrual pain
Mood booster, anti-depressant
Prevent a fatty liver
Support GI tract healing
Reduces free radical damage and oxidative stress
Slows the progression of neurodegenerative disease.
Aid in the treatment of cancer and/or cystic fibrosis
Turmeric is best consumed with some fat and protein which is why it’s popularly served with milk. The bases of this cozy drink are three simple ingredients: milk, turmeric, and black pepper, but this drink is so versatile that you may add in any of your desired herbs or spices to make it even more powerful.
Below I have listed some of my additional favorite ingredients and their benefits.
• Vanilla: for a natural mood booster, support the nervous system
• Ashwagandha: tonifies the overall body functioning, boosts the immune system
• Cardamon: supports the digestive system
• Ginger: improve digestion, and increases absorption of nutrients, anti-inflammatory
• Saffron: mood booster, relaxes sore muscles, boosts iron level, helps with digestion, decreases high blood pressure, sleep aid
• Cloves: immunity booster, anti-inflammatory, improves digestion, controls diabetes, anti-microbial
• Nutmeg: helps with insomnia, stomach spasms and pains, increase menstrual flow, lowers LDL, antidiarrheal, protects the liver, delays premature aging
Golden Milk is actually a straightforward recipe. Choose your desired animal or plant milk, slightly boil it over medium-high heat and add in ½ teaspoon to 1 teaspoon of turmeric. Add a small pinch of black pepper, this ingredient is essential as it helps boost turmeric’s active ingredient’s benefits. Add in any of the above additional herbs or spices, and mix well with a whisk. Let the mixture sit for a moment before serving. Pairs well with dates, and best served before bedtime for a night of deep sleep, or early morning to help fight arthritis pain or mid-afternoon for a pick me up or to fight a cold.
1 cup milk of choice
½ teaspoon turmeric
⅛ teaspoon black pepper (or less, just a tiny pinch)
⅛ teaspoon saffron (or sprinkle as desired)
⅛ teaspoon of vanilla
⅛ teaspoon cardamom powder
⅛ teaspoon clove powder
¼ teaspoon ashwagandha powder
⅛ teaspoon nutmeg
1-2 ½inch pieces of fresh ginger
i) If adding fresh ginger to this mixture, it is best to boil the ginger and milk together on their own before adding in any other spices or herbs.
ii) If you are adding cinnamon to this drink, be cautious of cinnamon’s warming properties. Some can be very sensitive to cinnamon’s energy boosting properties that if they drink it too late in the day, they may not be able to sleep.
I hope you enjoy this drink as much as I do. I would love to hear all about how you enjoy your golden milk!