Study: Curcumin Brand Increases Absorption by 29-Fold

April 21, 2011

The randomized, double-blind crossover study was performed collaboratively between supplements brand USANA and Indena.

In a new comparative absorption study published in the Journal of Natural Products, Meriva, a proprietary formulation of curcumin with soy lecithin by Indena (Milan), researchers reported a marked increase in Meriva absorption compared to standard curcumin.

The randomized, double-blind crossover study was performed collaboratively between supplements brand USANA and Indena. Nine volunteers were supplemented with either five capsules of Meriva (for a low, 209-mg total curcuminoid dose) or nine capsules of Meriva (for a high, 376-mg curcuminoid dose) or with five capsules of a corresponding nonformulated curcuminoid mixture containing 1799 mg total curcuminoids.

The plasma concentration of the three curcuminoids (curcumin, demethoxycurcumin, and bisdemethoxycurcumin) present in commercial curcumin was measured after supplementation.

Overall curcuminoid absorption was approximately 29-times higher in Meriva subjects compared to subjects taking the unformulated curcuminoid mixture. Moreover, a 50- to 60-fold higher absorption was observed for demethoxycurcumin and bisdemethoxycurcumin.

The company adds that improved absorption, and possibly also a better plasma curcuminoid profile, might underlie the clinical efficacy of Meriva at dosages significantly lower than unformulated curcuminoid mixtures.

“This Meriva study represents one of the more significant advances in turmeric research,” said Giovanni Appendino, professor of organic chemistry at the University of Eastern Piedmont and an Indena scientific advisor.

“For the first time, a dramatic formulation-dependent increase in the bioavailability of curcuminoids in humans has been demonstrated, highlighting that curcuminoids have different absorption properties and that the presence of lipids, as in Meriva, and in the traditional culinary use of turmeric critically magnifies them.”