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Curcumin -- MAO Inhibitor?
Question: I've heard that curcumin is a MAO inhibitor. Is this true, and does that mean it is not safe to take if you eat amine-rich foods like cheese and dark chocolate?
Answer: It is true that curcumin can act as a MAO inhibitor, but this has only be demonstrated in animals when given intravenously at high doses. There are no studies on curcumin's effect on MAO inhibition in people taking oral supplements -- which have significantly lower absorption and tend to be taken in much lower doses. There are, however, certain supplements and drugs which should not be taken when using curcumin and turmeric. For more information about this, see the Concerns and Cautions section of the Turmeric/Curcumin Supplements Review. Also see the Encyclopedia article about Curcumin.