The Impact of the Fermentation Process on Bioactive Compounds in Turmeric: A Review

Rahul Vinayak Salve, Ramesh Chavan, Prashant Pawase, Nilesh Kelapure, Rameshwar Jaju, Harshal Wadatkar and Mahesh Kadam


Turmeric (Curcuma longa L.) is a plant that has been used for its medicinal properties for centuries. It is known to contain a wide range of bioactive compounds, such as curcumin, which has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. The bioavailability of these compounds, however, can be limited by their poor solubility and low absorption rate. Fermentation is a process that can enhance the bioavailability and bioactivity of these compounds by breaking down complex compounds into simpler compounds. The fermentation of turmeric can be achieved using various strains of bacteria or yeast. The most used strains are Lactic acid bacteria, such as Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus fermentum, and Lactobacillus plantarum, and yeast strains such as Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The fermentation process involves the addition of the starter culture to the turmeric rhizome powder, followed by incubation under specific conditions, including temperature and pH, to promote the growth of the bacteria or yeast. Fermentation of turmeric can result in changes to the bioactive compounds present in the rhizome. Studies have shown that fermentation can lead to increased levels of curcuminoids, the main bioactive compounds, production of other bioactive compounds such as γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA), a neurotransmitter that has been linked to various health benefits, including anxiety reduction and improved sleep quality. Additionally, fermentation can increase the antioxidant activity of turmeric, as measured by its ability to scavenge free radicals. This review delves into the fermentation process, emphasizing the use of starter cultures and precise conditions to foster microbial growth. It also highlights how fermentation boosts curcuminoids and generates beneficial compounds like GABA. Furthermore, it underscores the enhancement of turmeric’s antioxidant abilities. The review aims to unveil fermentation’s vital role in maximizing turmeric’s therapeutic potential.

Published on: November 06, 2023
doi: 10.17756/jfcn.2023-s1-046
Citation: Salve RV, Chavan R, Pawase P, Kelapure N, Jaju R, et al. 2023. The Impact of the Fermentation Process on Bioactive Compounds in Turmeric: A Review. J Food Chem Nanotechnol 9(S1): S367-S374.