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Question: How does regular black pepper compare with black pepper extract used in supplements? Will sprinkling it on food with turmeric help increase the bioavailability of curcumin compounds from turmeric?
Answer: Black pepper contains piperine, a compound which has been shown to increase the bioavailability of curcumin — a key anti-inflammatory compound in turmeric. Piperine appears to do this inhibiting an enzyme that breaks down curcumin in the body. Piperine may similarly increase the bioavailability of certain supplement ingredients, such as CoQ10, as well as drugs (as discussed in the Concerns and Cautions in the Turmeric Supplements Review).
While regular black pepper (used as a spice in foods) contains a much smaller percentage of piperine than black pepper extracts, which are highly concentrated (such as Bioperine) — it is possible to get enough piperine from regular black pepper to significantly increase the bioavailability of turmeric in food. Sign in to see the full answer >>