BCM-95® is an enhanced-absorption curcumin extract backed by multiple clinical studies.
- Patented. BCM-95’s unique formula and its use for protecting against Alzheimer’s is protected by multiple patents.
- Improved Absorption. BCM-95 is standardized to 86% curcuminoids and 7-9% essential turmeric oils to enhance absorption, and has been shown to be 693% more bioavailable than basic curcumin.
- Clinically Researched. BCM-95’s cognitive and joint health benefits are backed by multiple human studies.
BCM-95 (Biocurcumax) is a patented, standardized extract of curcumin made by Indian herbal ingredient company Arjuna Natural. Curcumin is the main active ingredient in turmeric, a herb that’s been utilized in traditional Indian and Chinese medicine for thousands of years. Today, curcumin is one of the most researched herbal remedies in the world; it’s anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects have been utilized for everything from arthritis to Alzheimer’s.
Despite this, curcumin has frustrated clinicians because of its notoriously low absorption, which means that only a tiny percentage of the curcumin you ingest actually reaches the bloodstream and stays long enough to have any effect. BCM-95 attempts to fix this key problem by combining 86% curcuminoids (containing 95% curcumin) with 7-9% turmeric essential oils, which enhances curcumin’s bioavailability.
So far, clinical study findings suggest that BCM-95 possesses:
- Anti-inflammatory & antioxidant activity
- Anti-arthritic effects
- Antidepressant properties
BCM-95 vs Longvida
BCM-95 is often compared to Longvida, another high-quality, branded curcumin extract. We’ve compiled the key differences between these two products below. The main takeaway is that Longvida looks to be the better choice for brain-related concerns because it is designed to have higher bioavailability and enhanced transport into the brain.
|BCM-95 vs Longvida curcumin|
|Bioavailability (vs basic curcumin)||x7 times||x65 times|
|Half-life||5 hours||7 hours|
|Key feature||Turmeric essential oils for enhanced absorption||Advanced lipid matrix technology to enhance absorption, particularly in the brain|
|Human research evidence||Joint health, depression||Alzheimer’s, cardiovascular health, exercise recovery, and more|
BioCurcumax is protected by dozens of worldwide and U.S. patents. The most notable of these include:
The “95” in BCM-95 stands for the patent-protected formula that combines 86% curcuminoids (95% curcumin and 5% demethoxycurcumin and bisdidemethoxycurcumin) and 7-9% essential turmeric oils (45% Ar-turmerone). This formula addresses curcumin’s poor absorption by utilizing the fact that it is fat-soluble, which means the body has an easier time absorbing it when curcumin is taken with fat. As such, the turmeric oils act as a natural fat source that greatly enhances curcumin’s bioavailability (U.S. Patent 20070148263).
BCM-95 for Alzheimer’s
This patent describes the use of BCM-95 for protecting against Alzheimer’s (U.S. Patent 8859020). Because of curcumin’s poor absorption, having it reach the brain in sufficient enough quantities is even more difficult than other tissues.
BCM-95 Nutritional Supplement Uses
Curcumin has been used for a wide range of health disorders, including cardiovascular concerns, diabetes, arthritis, Alzheimer’s, digestive disorders, skin issues, epilepsy, wound healing, and much more. Because of this, BCM-95 can be found in a wide variety of supplements. Some of the most prominent examples include:
Joint Health Supplements
BCM-95 is most commonly used as a standalone joint health supplement, because curcumin is one of the most popular herbal supplements for arthritis relief. Multiple human studies of curcumin report joint benefits; more importantly, BCM-95 itself has been shown to improve arthritis in several studies.
Read more: Turmeric for joint health
BCM-95 is also found in brain health (nootropic) supplements, because there’s a good deal of research showing curcumin’s promise of protection against Alzheimer’s and other brain disorders. Most notably, multiple clinical trials have shown that BCM-95 alleviates depression and helps prevent cognitive decline in the elderly.
Read more: Turmeric as a nootropic
In addition to the above, BCM-95 can also be used in:
- Cardiovascular health & anti-diabetic supplements, because some studies have shown curcumin to enhance the blood lipid profile
- Immune system supplements, because there is large body of research evidence suggesting that curcuming helps with inflammatory and autoimmune disorders, including allergies, asthma, psoriasis, and much more
Read more: Curcumin for immunity
Biocurcumax has several key advantages over generic 95% curcumin extracts:
- Patented: BCM-95’s unique preparation, extraction, formula, and use for Alzheimer’s are protected by multiple worldwide and U.S. patents.
- Improved absorption: The extract is standardized to 86% curcuminoids (including 95% curcumin) and 7-9% essential turmeric oils, where the oils are used to enhance curcumin’s bioavailability & absorption. By contrast, generic curcumin products only include 95% curcumin and have poor absorption.
- Longer-lasting. BCM-95 has been demonstrated to have a half-life of 5 hours, whereas generic curcumin has a half-life of only about 2.6 hours.
- Clinical research: BCM-95’s cognitive and joint health benefits, and superior absorption are backed by multiple human studies.
- Safety: BCM-95 is Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) by the FDA and has been demonstrated to be safe in animal and human studies.
Clinical studies of BCM-95 report cognitive and joint health benefits, and prove that it has superior bioavailability compared to basic curcumin preparations.
This study examined the bioavailability of BCM-95 by comparing it to basic curcumin and to a curcumin-lecithin-piperine (CTR) complex, a popular curcumin formulation used to enhance its absorption. Eleven healthy people were divided into 3 groups, taking BCM-95 (4×500 mg) capsules or equivalent doses of basic curcumin or CTR. Their blood was examined before and up to 8 hours after supplementation. Two weeks later, the groups were switched.
The study found that BCM-95 was 6.93 times (693%) more bioavailable than basic curcumin, and 6.3 times (630%) than CTR. In addition, BCM-95 also led to a longer retention of curcumin in the blood, with a half-life of 5 hours compared to only 2.6 for curcumin.
- The researchers concluded that “…the relative bioavailability of BCM-95®CG (Biocurcumax™) was about 6.93-fold compared to normal curcumin and about 6.3-fold compared to curcumin-lecithin-piperine formula…” 1
This randomized, controlled study examined the potential antidepressant effects of BCM-95 curcumin. A total of 60 people with major depressive disorder (MDD) were given 20 mg of fluoxetine—popularly known as Prozac—BCM-95 (1000 mg), or their combination. A similar number of people in the curcumin group (62.5%) and fluoxetine group (64.7%) improved, with better response (77.8%) in the combined group. The average improvement on a rating scale of depression was similar in all 3 groups.
- The researchers concluded that “…curcumin may be used as an effective and safe modality for treatment in patients with MDD…” 2
This pilot study examined the effectiveness of BMC-95 curcumin for arthritis. A total of 45 people with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) were given curcumin (500 mg), diclofenac sodium, an NSAID (50 mg), or their combination. The curcumin group had the highest improvement in arthritis activity and symptom scores, and did not experience any significant side effects (unlike NSAIDs).
- The researchers concluded that “Our study provides the first evidence for the safety and superiority of curcumin treatment in patients with active RA…” 3
This randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study evaluated BCM-95 curcumin as an antidepressant. A total of 123 people with major depressive disorder (MDD) were given placebo, low-dose curcumin (2×250 mg), high-dose curcumin (2×500 mg), or low-dose curcumin plus safron (2×15 mg) daily for 12 weeks. All 3 herbal treatments improved symptoms and ratings of depression, and had greater effectiveness in people with atypical depression compared to the other patients.
- The researchers concluded that “…curcumin and combined curcumin/saffron were effective in reducing depressive and anxiolytic symptoms in people with major depressive disorder.” 4
- Most clinical studies of BCM-95 use two 500 mg doses daily
- As a standalone supplement, BCM-95 is usually presented in 650-1000 mg dosages
Supplements in Review Recommendation
- BCM-95®, 500-1000 mg.
BCM-95 improves curcumin’s absorption and is backed by research. Unlike generic curcumin, BCM-95 is backed by multiple human studies, and greatly improves absorption by adding oils naturally present in the turmeric plant.
Research suggests 500-1000 mg dosages. Most human studies of BCM-95 use 500 mg doses taken twice daily.
- B. Antony et al. A Pilot Cross-Over Study to Evaluate Human Oral Bioavailability of BCM-95®CG (Biocurcumax™), A Novel Bioenhanced Preparation of Curcumin. Indian J Pharm Sci. 2008 Jul-Aug; 70(4): 445–449. ↩
- Sanmukhani J et al. Efficacy and safety of curcumin in major depressive disorder: a randomized controlled trial. Phytother Res. 2014 Apr;28(4):579-85. ↩
- Chandran B and Goel A. A randomized, pilot study to assess the efficacy and safety of curcumin in patients with active rheumatoid arthritis. Phytother Res. 2012 Nov;26(11):1719-25. ↩
- Lopresti AL and Drummond PD. Efficacy of curcumin, and a saffron/curcumin combination for the treatment of major depression: A randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled study. J Affect Disord. 2017 Jan 1;207:188-196. ↩