Curcumin C3 Complex® is the most established, clinically-studied brand of curcumin extract.
- Patented. Cucumin C3’s formulation and its use for supporting human health is protected by worldwide and U.S. patents.
- Clinically Researched. Curcumin C3 has been used in more clinical studies than any other curcumin ingredient in the world.
- Standardized formula. Curcumin C3 is standardized to 95% curcuminoids, including 70-80% curcumin, 15-25% demethoxycurcumin, and 2.5-6.5% bisdemethoxycurcumin.
- Established. Curcumin C3 has been one of the most trusted curcumin brands for over two decades.
Curcumin C3 Complex is a patented, standardized curcumin extract made by Indian herbal ingredient company Sabinsa. Curcumin is the main ingredient in turmeric root (Curcuma longa), an herb used by traditional Indian Ayurvedic medicine for millennia.
Curcumin has been the subject of thousands of research studies and has been investigated as a therapeutic option for inflammatory, autoimmune, joint, metabolic, digestive, cardiovascular, skin, and neurodegenerative conditions.
Despite its amazing potential, curcumin has frustrated clinicians because of its notoriously low absorption. This means that only a small amount of the curcumin you ingest actually reaches the bloodstream and stays long enough to have any effect. To help solve this issue, Sabinsa combines Curcumin C3 with BioPerine, a black pepper piperine extract used to enhance bioavailability.
Curcumin C3 Complex uses a unique formula standardized to contain a minimum of 95% curcuminoids, and its name refers to its three components – curcumin, demethoxycurcumin (DMC) and bisdemethoxycurcumin (BDMC). With two decades of use, C3 is the most established curcumin extract on the market, and holds the distinction of being the most clinically studied curcumin extract in the world.
Curcumin C3 Complex Patents
Curcumin C3 preparation and method of use
This is one of the first patents related to curcumin supplements. This patent describes the preparation method of C3, which includes:
- Drying turmeric root and turning it into a powder
- Extracting the powder to product a liquid extract
- Concentrating the extract
- Lowering the extract’s temperature to turn curcuminoids into solid crystals
- Isolating the crystals and applying another solvent
- Isolating the three main curcuminoids – 70-80% curcumin, 15-25% demethoxycurcumin, and 2.5-6.5% bisdemethoxycurcumin
Curcumin C3 Complex Nutritional Supplement Uses
Curcumin is one of the most versatile supplement ingredients, and has been used to help with cardiovascular health, diabetes, arthritis, autoimmune disorders, Alzheimer’s, digestive conditions, skin issues, and much more. As such, Cucumin C3 Complex can be used in a wide range of supplements, with the most prominent examples being:
Joint Health Supplements
Curcumin C3 Complex is most commonly used as a standalone joint health supplement, because curcumin is one of the most popular herbal remedies for arthritis relief. Multiple high-quality human studies of Curcumin C3 supplementation report improvement of osteoarthritis, and generic curcumin has also been shown to help with rheumatoid arthritis.
Read more: Turmeric for joint health
C3 Complex is also sometimes used as a nootropic, because of research showing curcumin’s promise of protection against Alzheimer’s, anxiety, depression, and other mental disorders. However, it should be noted that curcumin supplements have difficulty reaching the brain in sufficient quantities. As such, a brain-specialized brand of curcumin such as Longvida may be the better option.
Read more: Turmeric as a nootropic
Multiple studies have shown that C3 Complex and generic curcumin ingredients are capable of improving cardiovascular health by improving high cholesterol levels and the overall blood lipid profile. Most notably, Curcumin C3 may reduce the levels of elevated blood cholesterol and triglycerides, while improving levels of HDL (“good”) cholesterol.
Curcumin is also widely used as an immune system supplement. Animal & human research evidence suggests that curcumin helps with a wide range of inflammatory and autoimmune disorders, including allergies, asthma, psoriasis, ulcerative colitis, rheumatoid arthritis, and much more. In addition, it has also been demonstrated to normalize immune function, meaning that it helps keep it the immune system from under or overperforming.
Read more: Curcumin for immunity
Curcumin C3 Complex Advantages
Curcumin C3 complex is the most established curcumin extract on the supplement market, and has several advantages over generic curcumin preparations:
- Standardized formula: Curcumin C3 has a unique, patented formula standardized to 95% total curcuminoids, made up of 70-80% curcumin, 15-25% demethoxycurcumin, and 2.5-6.5% bisdemethoxycurcumin.
- Clinical research: Curcumin C3 is the most research-backed curcumin extract on the market. Its joint, inflammation, immune system, cardiovascular, anxiety-reducing, and other health benefits are backed by over 45 clinical studies, most of which are randomized, controlled trials (RCTs) – the gold standard of human research.
- Reputation: Curcumin C3 is the most established curcumin extract on the market with over two decades of use and research. In addition, Sabinsa is widely recognized as a pioneer in bringing curcumin and other traditional Indian herbs to the supplement market.
- Safety: The extract is Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) by the FDA and has been demonstrated to be safe in dozens of human studies.
Curcumin C3 Complex Research
Clinical studies of Curcumin C3 report numerous health benefits, including antioxidant & anti-inflammatory activity, improvement of arthritis, alleviation of inflammatory & autoimmune conditions, anxiolytic activity, immunomodulatory activity, and improvement of metabolic syndrome-related health measures such as blood cholesterol levels.
This randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study examined the efficacy of Curcumin C3 for arthritis. A total of 40 people with knee osteoarthritis (OA) were given curcumin extract (1.5 g) daily in 3 doses or placebo for 6 weeks.
Compared to placebo, the curcumin group experienced improvement on the McMaster Universities Arthritis Index (WOMAC) score, particularly in terms of pain and physical function.
- The researchers concluded that “…curcuminoids represent an effective and safe alternative treatment for OA.” 1
This randomized, double-blind study examined the potential antidepressant and anxiolytic (anxiety-reducing) effects of Curcumin C3 in obese individiuals. A total of 30 obese people were given placebo or curcumin extract (1 g) daily for 30 days. Although the study did not find any changes in measures of depression, the Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI) scale improved with curcumin supplementation, suggesting an anxiolytic effect.
- The researchers concluded that “Curcumin has a potential anti-anxiety effect in individuals with obesity.” 2
This randomized, placebo-controlled study evaluated the effects of Curcumin C3 on abnormal blood lipid levels. A total of 100 people with metabolic syndrome were given curcumin (1 g plus 10 mg piperine for improved absorption) or placebo daily for 8 weeks. Compared to placebo, curcumin supplementation reduced LDL (“bad”) cholesterol, total cholesterol, triglycerides and lipoprotein(a), while increasing HDL (“good”) cholesterol.
- The researchers concluded that “Curcuminoids-piperine combination is an efficacious adjunctive therapy in patients with MS and can modify serum lipid concentrations…” 3
This randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover study looked at the effects of Curcumin C3 on dyslipidemia in obese individuals. A total of 30 obese participants were given placebo or cucuminoids (1 g) daily for 30 days. The supplementation significantly lowered blood triglyceride levels, but had no effect on other blood lipid parameters such as total cholesterol.
- The researchers concluded that “…curcuminoid supplementation (1 g/day for 30 days) leads to a significant reduction in serum triglycerides concentrations…” 4
This study evaluated the effects of C3 Curcumin on the systemic inflammation and immune system dysfunction in obesity. A total of 30 obese adults were assigned to groups receiving curcumin (1 g) or placebo daily for 4 weeks, and later switched groups for another 4 weeks. Curcumin supplementation resulted in significant reductions of IL-1β , IL-4, and VEGF – cytokines involved in inflammation and immune system activation.
- The researchers concluded that “curcumin may exert immunomodulatory effects via altering the circulating concentrations of IL-1β, IL-4, and VEGF.” 5
This randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study evaluated the effects of Curcumin C3 on oxidative stress in diabetes. A total of 118 people with type 2 diabetes were given placebo or cucumin (1 g plus 10 mg piperine for better absorption) daily for 8 weeks. The supplementation increased blood antioxidant capacity and activity of the antioxidant enzyme superoxide dismutase (SOD), while reducing MDA, a marker of oxidative stress.
- The researchers concluded that “The present results support an antioxidant effect of curcuminoids supplementation in patients with T2DM.” 6
This randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial investigated the effects of Curcumin C3 on adiponectin and leptin – two hormones that play important roles in the development of obesity and diabetes. A total of 117 people with metabolic syndrome were given placebo or curcumin (1 g) daily for 8 weeks. The supplemented group experienced an increase in adiponectin, a hormone involved in breaking down fat and controlling blood glucose levels, and a decrease in leptin, a hormone associated with increased fat mass.
- The researchers concluded that “Curcumin can improve serum levels of adiponectin and leptin in patients with metabolic syndrome.” 7
This randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study examined the use of Curcumin C3 for lichen planus, an autoimmune, inflammatory condition. Twenty participants were given placebo or curcuminoids (6 g) daily for a year. The curcumin group saw significant improvements in signs and symptoms of the condition.
- The researchers concluded that “Curcuminoids at doses of 6000 mg/d in 3 divided doses are well tolerated and may prove efficacious in controlling signs and symptoms of oral lichen planus.“8
Curcumin C3 Complex Dosage
- Positive clinical research has used Curcumin C3 dosages ranging from 1-6 g, although 1 g is the most common
- Curcumin supplements typically supply 1-1.5 g dosages of C3 Complex
- Curcumin C3 Complex is typically combined with BioPerine piperine at a ratio of 100:1 to enhance absorption
Supplements in Review Recommendation
- Curcumin C3 Complex®, 1-1.5 g daily.
Curcumin C3 is the most established, trusted, and clinically-backed curcumin extract. If you’re looking for a curcumin product that has been proven to work in human research and has decades of use backing its effectiveness, then Curcumin C3 is a solid choice.
Most studies use 1 g dosages. Most human studies of Curcumin C3 use 1 g dosages (with 10 mg piperine), and supplements recommend taking 1-1.5 g daily.
- Panahi Y et al. Curcuminoid treatment for knee osteoarthritis: a randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial. Phytother Res. 2014 Nov;28(11):1625-31. ↩
- Esmaily H et al. An investigation of the effects of curcumin on anxiety and depression in obese individuals: A randomized controlled trial. Chin J Integr Med. 2015 May;21(5):332-8. ↩
- Panahi Y et al. Lipid-modifying effects of adjunctive therapy with curcuminoids-piperine combination in patients with metabolic syndrome: results of a randomized controlled trial. Complement Ther Med. 2014 Oct;22(5):851-7. ↩
- Mohammadi A et al. Effects of supplementation with curcuminoids on dyslipidemia in obese patients: a randomized crossover trial. Phytother Res. 2013 Mar;27(3):374-9. ↩
- Ganjali S et al. Investigation of the effects of curcumin on serum cytokines in obese individuals: a randomized controlled trial. Scientific World Journal. 2014 Feb 11;2014:898361. ↩
- Panahi Y et al. Antioxidant effects of curcuminoids in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus: a randomized controlled trial. Inflammopharmacology. 2017 Feb;25(1):25-31. ↩
- Panahi Y et al. Effects of supplementation with curcumin on serum adipokine concentrations: A randomized controlled trial. Nutrition. 2016 Oct;32(10):1116-22. ↩
- Chainani-Wu N et al. High-dose curcuminoids are efficacious in the reduction in symptoms and signs of oral lichen planus. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2012 May;66(5):752-60. ↩