Imagine stumbling upon a formula that’s got some solid science behind it, and could gently nudge your health in the right direction. That’s what we’re diving into today – Longvida Optimized Curcumin.
It’s a special kind of extract, fine-tuned to give you a good deal of its benefits.
What makes this formula stand out is its potential, and the science backing it is really interesting. It’s been part of a good number of clinical trials, and the results? They’re pretty encouraging.
In this article, we’re going to look at four of the top brands that make the most of this optimized curcumin. Each of these brands offers at least the same daily dose that has been proven helpful in the trials.
Below the Table of Contents are the products we’ll be looking at.
Best Longvida Optimized Curcumin brands
1MD CurcuminMD Plus – Top Pick
This is the one that my clinical researching wife & I have been taking for 18 months or so now. We believe in it:
Science resources included
As is my custom here on heydayDo, I will provide links to all of the relevant sports science & medical resources, clinical studies, and nutritional data used in this article.
What’s coming up
Reviews of top Longvida products
For the product review portion of the article I will share the following important bits of info about each of the brands:
- Manufacturing quality standards
- Buyer ratings
Longvida’s medical evidence
In addition to combing over the supplements’ details, I will also talk a little about what clinical research has found out about Longvida:
- areas where Longvida offers potential benefits to us;
- what sets Longvida apart from typical curcumin products & other curcumin extract formulas.
Longvida facts, sourcing info, & origin
Since the supplement companies featured in this article don’t own or make Longvida themselves, I thought it would be cool to provide some background on who these brands get their Longvida from, how the curcumin is sourced, etc.
And since the company that supplies these supplement makers their Longvida doesn’t own the patent to Longvida (they license it)…
…I’ll share a little information about the original invention of this unique curcumin extract formula itself, back before it even had the name Longvida associated with it.
About Longvida Optimized Curcumin Extract
*This allows for a much lower dose of curcumin to be used than the typical enhanced absorption curcumin extracts on the market.
*The dose of 400 mg Longvida (which has 80 mg curcumin in it) has demonstrated positive results in many early stage research studies focusing on a variety of health conditions:
- Alzheimer’s disease (A)
- Cognitive function in healthy adults (B)
- Inflammation (C)
- Endothelial (heart & blood vessel) function (D)
- Exercise-induced muscle damage (E)
- Osteoarthritic knee pain (F)
(The blue letters are links to a relevant clinical trial for their respective health issues, and open in a separate tab.)
And there are several more Longvida studies, which you can find by searching the U.S. National Library of Medicine by clicking on its link.
You can also access a number of those studies, medical conference presentations, & preclinical papers on Longvida at Verdure Science’s Longvida research page.
There’s absorption & then there’s bioavailability
That is an important distinction to keep in mind.
You see, curcumin’s active ingredients are pretty bad at getting absorbed by our bodies, even before dealing with the blood-brain barrier, another issue I’ll go over in a bit.
They get processed away in our digestive system and never make it to our bloodstream where they can really do us some good.
Note that there are several high-quality curcumin supplements that get around curcumin’s poor absorption problem by using an enhancer like black pepper extract, or a fat-based molecule.
I know this because I researched the topic & listed the best curcumin products I found, those with the improved absorption, after ploughing through 25-30 brands that didn’t.
But unfortunately, absorption in the gut does not mean guaranteed bioavailability in the brain, and that’s where Longvida-based supplements may have a leg up on other turmeric formulas.
Longvida’s research: 60+ studies & growing
Longvida has been part of a great deal of scientific research, with more than 60 clinical studies under its belt.
These studies cover a range of health topics, from brain function to joint health, which just goes to show how useful this supplement could be in keeping us healthy.
That much clinical testing is another one of Longvida’s real kickers for me, since I can think of only one other curcumin extract formula that has that much research backing it, BCM-95.
Obviously Longvida has curcumin in it, but there are other things in its formula too. After all, it’s a 400 mg Longvida dose but it only has 80 mg of curcumin in it.
In fact it’s some of the other ingredients in it that allow it to have the superior degree of absorption & bioavailability compared to plain curcumin & even other “enhanced” curcumin extract formulas.
Let’s see what all’s in Longvida, and you’ll see these same ingredients listed on the Supplement Facts label for any product that has Longvida in it.
Longvida’s other ingredients
- Vegetable cellulose (the capsule)
- Soy or sunflower lecithin
- Maltodextrin or rice flour
- Stearic acid
- Ascorbyl palmitate
Review of Longvida optimized curcumin products
So here are what I currently think are the four best Longvida-based curcumin extract supplements on the market.
Excluded a few competitors
I found a handful of other curcumin products that were also made with Longvida, but after looking into their products & their companies I excluded them for different reasons.
At the end of the day, I felt that they just weren’t on par with the four brands I selected for this article.
Product review categories
I’ll briefly go over each curcumin product separately, & here again are the areas I’ll touch on:
- Ingredients / Supplement Facts
- Manufacturing quality standards
- Buyer ratings
The curcumin supplements are listed from the one with the highest buyer ratings on down, and I compiled the reviews from as many online retailers I could find for each of them.
The % you see represents the percentage of reviewers who gave the product 4 or 5 stars.
To read buyer reviews or see current price on Amazon, click the product name or its pic — though CurcuminMD has links to the 1MD website, since it’s a lot cheaper there.
4.8 ⭐ – 90%, 1,000+ online ratings
I wrote an in-depth review of this turmeric product & the company that sells it (1MD) that you can read here on heydayDo:
CurcuminMD Plus also has Boswellia Serrata extract in it, which has been clinically proven to be effective against osteoarthritis & inflammation. By the way/In case you didn’t know, Boswellia is the tree that frankincense comes from.
The Longvida serving size matches dose used for several successful studies (400 mg).
*Gluten-free, vegan, non-GMO, soy-free (uses sunflower lecithin instead of the usual soy lecithin).
*GMP (Good Manufacturing Practices) certified.
*1MD is a Southern California-based company affiliated with doctors who put together its formulas.
4.7 ⭐ – 90%, 350+ online ratings
*Pure Longvida product
*Serving size matches dose used for several successful studies (400 mg)
*Vegan, dairy-free, egg-free, Kosher, gluten-free, non-GMO, nut-free
*NOW has been in business since 1968 and is an American, family-owned company
4.6 ⭐ – 88%, 470+ online ratings
*Pure Longvida product
*Serving size of 500 mg Longvida/115 mg curcumin is slightly higher dose than that used for several successful studies (400 mg/80 mg)
*Free from dairy, gluten, lactose, wheat, yeast, artificial flavors & colors, non-GMO, Kosher & Halal approved, vegan
*GMP certification in the UK
*Family-owned, nutrition science-based supplement company in Cambridge, England
4.4 ⭐ – 82%, 500+ online ratings
*Interestingly/oddly, their suggested serving size is 2 capsules to provide 1000 mg of Longvida.
This is more than double the dosages used (400 mg/day) in several of the Longvida clinical research trials I read.
An arthritis study using the high dose
But I did see a study using patients with chronic osteoarthritis who were given the 400 mg dose twice a day, while comparing them to patients receiving 400 mg of ibuprofen. (2)
The patients taking the Longvida had very similar pain-reduction results as those taking the NSAID ibuprofen.
In any event…
This 1000 mg dose is two capsules’ worth, so you can cut your cost in half & still take more than the proven effective dose by simply taking one pill a day instead of two. 😉
*Free from sugar, wheat, gluten, wheat, egg, salt, artificial colors & preservatives
*30+ year-old American company based in Southern California, with a focus on Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Lyme Disease, & Fibromyalgia
*ProHealth has several quality standard certifications, & here’s a screenshot of their badges:
NSF-certified: The National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) is an independent (third-party) testing organization that verifies product purity & potency, as well as certifies the manufacturing facility to meet or exceed public health standards.
How we chose our Longvida curcumin supplement
We (my wife & I) had both been taking another enhanced-absorption turmeric extract, which had helped me & my overused joints immensely but hadn’t worked in an arthritic problem area of hers (hip).
I discovered Longvida in 2020 while doing curcumin research for articles here on heydayDo, and shared the existing clinical studies with her.
(She’s a medical research expert, having worked on human clinical trials for cancer & infectious diseases for over 30 years, and is a Registered Nurse since 1975.)
So when she told me about Boswellia’s results with osteoarthritis patients, we went with 1MD’s CurcuminMD Plus.
Bottom line on Longvida
*Understand that Longvida is Longvida, meaning there’s only one version of it.
*All of the companies in this article have high-quality certifications of their products’ purity & potency, as well as for their manufacturing standards.
*We bought the CurcuminMD Plus for its additional ingredient Boswellia because of its own effectiveness against osteoarthritis.
(Plus my wife told me to.😄)
Where is Longvida’s curcumin sourced from?
Verdure Sciences has the only license (that I’m aware of anyway) to manufacture the formula they call Longvida.
The supplement companies featured in this article buy the Longvida powdered extract from Verdure, then they each manufacture their own Longvida product — three of them here in the U.S. and Igennus being in the UK has theirs made in Europe.
And all of the other supplement makers that use Longvida that I came across get theirs from Verdure Sciences too.
Longvida curcumin’s from Indian turmeric
And Verdure Sciences gets their curcumin from India, but that should not come as too much of a surprise to anyone real familiar with turmeric powder & its prevalence in Indian cooking.
Being a giant multinational conglomerate myself 😜, I happen to have global turmeric export data ranked by country handy…so let me share that with you.
India’s the #1 turmeric exporter in the world by a mile
What you see in the chart below are the Top 10 turmeric exporters ranked by dollars, though good luck finding #10.
Care to guess which country is responsible for almost 80% of the world’s turmeric?
How Verdure Sciences gets their turmeric
Here’s a short video from Longvida manufacturer Verdure Sciences showing how & where they contract their curcumin supply from Indian turmeric growers.
They also have a little bit on how it goes from a plant to a powder too.
A little dose of Longvida science
I’ve used the word unique to describe Longvida’s formula a few times, and for good reason. It’s got this special trait where it’s effective at small doses of curcumin, which is quite a standout among turmeric supplements.
But there’s something even more noteworthy that Longvida can do which few other turmeric supplements have shown too, and that’s the ability for it to cross the blood-brain barrier**.
(** – I explain below.)
This could be a big deal if you’re looking at options for your turmeric curcumin supplementation, especially if you’re an older adult like me.
Curcumin & the blood-brain barrier
The blood-brain barrier is a sort of gatekeeper in our bodies. It’s a protective border that stops most substances in our bloodstream from reaching our brain. It’s there to keep our brains safe, but it also means that a lot of supplements can’t get through.
That’s where Longvida Optimized Curcumin stands out. It’s been shown to cross this barrier, which improves its chances of being effective.
To kick things off, here’s another quick (2-minute) vid that’s easy-to-understand, on the important role of the blood-brain barrier.
The blood-brain barrier blocks curcumin
So while it’s keeping out the bad guys, our blood-brain barrier also won’t let curcumin’s beneficial compounds (curcuminoids) into our brain to do their restorative work.
But Longvida’s formula helps the curcumin pass through the blood-brain barrier, unlike other turmeric supplements.
Longvida & the BBB (blood-brain barrier)
In the meantime, here is a video from Longvida licensee & manufacturer Verdure Sciences that interviews the lead investigator on a significant curcumin brain study, done at Ohio State University, talking about what he found while testing Longvida.
By the way…
…It just so happens that the 4 brands of supplements in this article using Longvida’s Optimized Curcumin have the same daily dose (or slightly higher) as was used in Dr. DiSilvestro’s clinical trial (400 mg of Longvida, yielding 80 mg of curcumin):
This makes a strong claim that these products are likely some of the best turmeric curcumin supplements around for anyone who’s interested in maintaining optimum brain function as they age.
I’m 64, and I guarantee you I want nothing to do with any cognitive decline, let alone any Alzheimer’s or dementia crap.
So I for one am plenty interested in “maintaining optimum brain function” 😄 .
*SLCP® technology powers Longvida’s success
SLCP stands for Solid Lipid Curcumin Particles.
And as my simple brain understands it, by wrapping the active curcumin compounds in fat molecules (lipids) they can get through the digestive system without getting “tagged” and then excreted. (4)
This type of “free-form curcumin” is the only form that has demonstrated several times its ability to cross the blood-brain barrier. (5)
Longvida has bioavailability up to 285x greater
The huge increase in bioavailability over regular curcumin that Longvida has allows it to be clinically effective at a much lower dose than typical curcumin products.
This means it’s a very cost effective way to take advantage of curcumin’s main health benefits:
- Promote healthy aging
- Improve brain function
Regular curcumin gets glucuronidated…what?!
That long word up there that starts with a ‘g’ that I’m having a hard time pronouncing (no, not “gets” 😄) describes a common metabolism process our body does to rid itself of foreign substances like drugs, chemicals, & even bioactive things like curcumin.
It’s like a self-regulating, self-healing process where our bodies make glucuronic acid to rapidly break down those foreign things and literally flush them out of our system.
Great for bad stuff, bad for good stuff like curcumin.
Plain turmeric curcumin simply does not get absorbed well
Regular turmeric supplements have been proven time & time again to have extremely poor bioavailability (bioavailability means something makes it into our bloodstream so it is able to give us benefit). (6)
Ironically, as more studies continue to demonstrate poor bioavailability of curcumin, turmeric products explode onto the scene & are multiplying like rabbits on retailer shelves:
Longvida gets free curcumin into our bloodstream
Longvida’s unique SLCP “transport system” I described earlier helps the curcumin inside it to avoid glucuronidation, & instead become free curcumin —meaning it’s free to enter the bloodstream, cross the blood-brain barrier, all that…
…basically go where it wants to & do its thing.
A short story on Longvida
The supplement brands featured in this article each make their own curcumin product using Longvida®, but none of them own the rights to its intellectual property.
For example — Longvida® is not a 1MD product, CurcuminMD Plus is their product and Longvida is the unique curcumin extract they use in it.
But 1MD doesn’t make the Longvida themselves; again, they just make their own supplements and CurcuminMD Plus is one of those supplements.
Who makes Longvida?
Longvida® is made by Verdure Sciences, a very interesting & well-run company I stumbled upon when doing research on the different turmeric curcumin formulas that are in the supplements we’re getting flooded with these days.
But Verdure Sciences didn’t invent Longvida, nor do they own its patent, though they no doubt had a hand in giving it its name.
Who owns Longvida?
Longvida® is licensed to Verdure Sciences by the joint owners of its intellectual property & patent, the Regents of the University of California and the Department of Veteran Affairs in Washington, D.C. (8)
But (perhaps obviously)…
…the governing board of the ten colleges within the U.C. system didn’t take a break one day from their meetings about budgets & admission policies to go invent a groundbreaking chemical formula made from something inside the roots of a turmeric plant.
So who invented Longvida?
Longvida® was invented by two Ph.D’s working in the Department of Neurology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, Dr. Sally Frautschy & Dr. Greg Cole.
The patent was filed by Dr.’s Frautschy & Cole in March 2007, and as mentioned was filed on behalf of the UC Regents & Veteran Affairs Dept. It was granted a few years later, thus distinguishing its formula as unique compared to all other curcumin extract formulas.
Description in the US Patent Office Filing
Here’s what the patent document had written on it when it was originally submitted to the U.S. Patent Office:
“Bioavailable curcuminoid formulations for treating Alzheimer’s disease and other age-related disorders.
Curcuminoid formulations having enhanced bioavailability are provided and comprise a curcuminoid, antioxidant, glucuronidation inhibitor, and water-soluble, pharmaceutically acceptable inhibitor.
A method of treating Alzheimer’s and other age-related diseases by administering such a composition is also provided.”
Here’s a nice explanation of how the science behind Longvida distinguishes it from typical curcumin extract products, courtesy of Igennus, whose supplement we looked at earlier:
Here are answers to a few of the commonly asked questions about curcumin.
Is cumin the same as curcumin?
Cumin and curcumin come from completely different plant families. Cumin is made from the seeds of cuminum cyminum, a relative of parsley & carrot. Curcumin is the bright orange compound found within the spice turmeric.
What is the most bioavailable form of curcumin?
Curcumin needs to be taken with absorption enhancers to be effective. These supplements often pair curcumin with lipid (fat-based) molecules like the patented formulas BCM-95 & Longvida, or the black pepper extract piperine.
What foods contain curcumin?
Curcumin comes from the spice turmeric. In fact it’s the curcumin in turmeric that gives it its bright orange-yellow color. So you’ll find curcumin in all of the spices, foods, & drinks that have turmeric powder in them.
How long does curcumin take to work?
When taking curcumin, patience is key. It could take approximately two weeks to start observing the benefits, assuming you're taking an absorption-enhanced formula, plus we each react differently.
Related turmeric curcumin resources here on heydayDo
I’ve researched the main turmeric curcumin formulas used in clinical trials and many of the brands that use them.
Here are other curcumin articles I’ve published besides this one & my CurcuminMD review:
I hope that my article on the current best Longvida® Optimized Curcumin products is useful to you, and that the info on the science & company behind Longvida is helpful too.
I wish you well on your fitness journey.