One of the best medicinal spices, turmeric's main active ingredient is curcumin, also called Indian saffron, an intensely yellow vegetable pigment. As an anti-inflammatory agent, curcumin (E-100) is on a par with cortisone, being able to reduce the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis. It can also lower cholesterol, hinder blood clotting, protect the liver from toxins, regulate the glucose of diabetics, increase stomach defense against acid, and fight a variety of cancers.