Effects of curcumin consumption on human chronic diseases: A narrative review of the most recent clinical data

Phytother Res. 2018 Jun;32(6):957-975. doi: 10.1002/ptr.6037. Epub 2018 Feb 22.


Numerous clinical trials have investigated the potential beneficial effects of curcumin supplementation against several human chronic diseases. Up to now, it has been claimed that curcumin consumption may exert beneficial effects against several chronic diseases by promoting human health and preventing diseases. In this aspect, the present review aims to critically collect and in-depth summarize the most recent, well-designed clinical studies evaluating the potential beneficial effects of curcumin consumption on human health promotion and disease prevention. According to recent and well-designed clinical studies, curcumin consumption may benefit against obesity, metabolic syndrome, and diabetes. Moreover, curcumin consumption seems to exert a positive effect on people suffering from various types of cancer, fatty liver disease, depression, arthritis, skin diseases, gut inflammation, and symptoms of premenstrual syndrome. Due to the strong heterogeneity among the clinical studies concerning the exact effective curcumin dose and formulation, as well as the recommended treatment duration for each chronic disease, no precise and definitive conclusions could be drawn. Further large-scale prospective studies are strongly recommended, being well-designed as far as follow-up times, dosage, formulation, and duration of curcumin supplementation are concerned. Moreover, potential confounders in each specific chronic disease should carefully be taken into account in future studies.

Keywords: cancer; chronic diseases; curcumin; diabetes; inflammation; metabolic syndrome; obesity.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Chronic Disease / drug therapy*
  • Curcumin / pharmacology
  • Curcumin / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Prospective Studies


  • Curcumin