How to start

(last edited: Oct 29, 2015)

Do not use Curcumin when: 
1. You have gallbladder obstructions. 
2. Are pregnant or trying to get pregnant
3. Breast feeding
4. You have problems with blood clotting
From Longvida Curcumin website: Curcumin may enhance the action of anti-platelet drugs, high doses of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or warfarin. Do not take if you have a biliary tract obstruction or are taking a steroidal anti-inflammatory such as prednisone.

and also: do NOT take Curcumin and Glutathione supplements at the same time. It doesn't cause any harm, but they may both become ineffective when taken at the same time. In stead of being absorbed separately, they might bind to eachother in the intestine and both would become useless. Taking them 1 or 2 hours apart, seems to fix the problem. The same could be the case for N-Acetyl Cysteine.

If you are using stomach acid reducing medication, Curcumin could cause stomach pain. I've heard this from two users. Not everyone experiences this, but if you notice stomach pain, this may be the reason for it.

Do not use Genistein when:
1. You are pregnant or trying to get pregnant
2. Breast feeding
3. You have, have had, or are at an increased risk of hormone related cancers
Please discuss with your doctor first

Please be aware that Curcumin, Piperine and Genistein (especially at higher doses) can interfere with other medications. Please discuss with your doctor before starting new medications.
If you are often taking other oral or IV medications, I would suggest you use a Curcumin without piperine. like Dr's Best Phytosome Curcumin.



We have always used AOV 811, but lately I've been noticing that it doesn't dissolve well. I find specks of Curcumin visible in J's stools and it doesn't dissolve well in hot milk anymore either. I've contacted AOV about it, but they only checked the Curcumin content of the product and didn't address the problem of solubility at all. I am not the only one that has noticed a change in solubility. I was hoping it would be just one batch that was 'off', but all batches that I've received since then, have shown problems with solubility. If Curcumin doesn't dissolve, it can't be absorbed from the intestine. So we are changing to Vitakruid C3-2X, which is similar to AOV, but contains a little more Curcumin per capsule (650mg in stead of 600mg) and twice the amount of black pepper extract (10mg per capsule in stead of 5mg)
It may be a little more potent because of the extra Bioperine, but we'll figure it out!

Vitakruid Curcuma C3-2X:

Curcumin C3 Complex         650mg
Bioperine                                10mg

California Gold Nutrition

Curcumin C3 Complex     500mg
Bioperine                              5mg

Available at
120 capsules for $28 is a good deal



AOV 805 Genisteine

Ingredients per recommended daily dose (2 capsules!)
Soy isoflavone-complex         440mg
Isoflavones (40%)                  176mg
Genistein (22%)                       97mg (=2 capsules)


First, if you can find a similar product in your country (less shipping cost) go ahead and try. See if you can find Curcumin with Bioperine, and when looking for Genistein please check for exact amounts of genistein in the ingredients. If you choose to use a completely different product, it might work just as well or even better, it just makes it harder to compare to our dosages and effects…

I have found two Dutch webstores that sell these products, are in English and ship worldwide: (click the UK flag for English)
For Dutch people ordering in Holland I recommend this website for Genistein as they always give 30% discount:
The Vitakruid product can be bought from (ships to European countries, if ordering outside Europe, try Dr's Best C3 Complex, through Amazon for example)

What else is good?
If you buy Curcumin, make sure it containts one of these: Piperine (or Bioperine), Meriva or Longvida





Note of caution: someone using this Natures Aid Genistein (in high doses) was found to have too high levels of Calcium in the blood. Was also using other calcium supplements at the same time. This product contains calcium although exact amounts are not mentioned on the label.


For anyone with gating mutations, I recommend to start with both Curcumin and Genistein. For other mutations I would personally start with Curcumin only for 1 or 2 months and add Genistein at a later date to find out if it is just Curcumin bringing positive effects or the actual combination of the two supplements. It is still a mystery why CurcuminGenistein seems to work for some other mutations, it could be that it is just Curcumin's strong anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant effects that people are noticing. You don't want to spend money on Genistein if it's not doing anything.

For your weight in KILOGRAMS:

Curcumin 20mg/kg/day
Genistein 1mg/kg/day

Curcumin: weight in kg x 20 = total amount of Curcumin in mg's for one day, split into 3 (breakfast, lunch, dinner)
Genistein: weight in kg x 1 = total amount of Genistein in mg's for one day, split into 3 (breakfast, lunch, dinner)

Calculation example for weight in kilograms:
Let's say you weigh 56kg's
Curcumin: 56 x 20 = 1120mg of Curcumin total per day
Genistein: 56 x 1 = 56mg of Genistein total per day.
Now look further below for how to split capsules and you'll end up with this:
If you are using 500mg capsules of Curcumin use 3/4 (three quarters) of a capsules 3 times a day.
If you are using Life Ext Soy Isoflavones containing 28mg Genistein per caps, use 2/3 (two thirds) of a capsule 3 times a day.
Breakfast: 3/4 caps Curc and 2/3 caps Gen
Lunch: 3/4 caps Curc and 2/3 caps Gen
Dinner: 3/4 caps Curc and 2/3 caps Gen

For your weight in POUNDS (lbs.)

Curcumin 9mg/lb/day
Genistein 0.45mg/lb/day

Curcumin: weight in pounds x 9 = total amount of Curcumin in mg's for one day, split into 3 (breakfast, lunch, dinner)
Genistein: weight in pounds x 0.45 = total amount of Genistein in mg's for one day, split into 3 (breakfast, lunch, dinner)

Calculation example for weight in POUNDS:
let's say you weigh 73lbs.
Curcumin: 73 x 9 = 657mg total per day
Genistein: 73 x 0.45 = 33mg total per day

Now look further below, at how to split capsules. If you have 500mg Curcumin capsules and 28mg Genistein caspules (Life Extension) you can see how to dose.
For Curcumin the closest to 657mg is 750mg, so 3 x 1/2 (half) capsule of Curc per day.
For Genistein the closest to 33mg is 28, so 3 x 1/3 (one third) capsule of Gen per day).
Breakfast: 1/2 caps of Curc and 1/3 caps of Gen,
Lunch: 1/2 caps of Curc and 1/3 caps of Gen,
Dinner: 1/2 caps of Curc and 1/3 caps of Gen.

Or, if you're not good at math, find your total starting dose per day in this table, the last column showing how much to take when split into 3, take that amount from the last column with breakfast, again with lunch and again with dinner.

So split total amount for the day into at least 3. Remember to take it with a meal with at least 10g of fat! and enzymes!

How to split capsules
It doesn't have to be very very precise. Usually you'll end up having to split capsules into parts. Just open them up by sliding them apart and estimate how much you need. I don't expect that to be a problem.

Below are two examples of how to split a 500mg capsule and a 28mg capsules, since those are what most people use.

For 500mg capsules (most Curcumin comes in 500mg capsules)
375mg total per day = use 1/4 (quarter) of a capsule three times per day
500mg total per day = use 1/3 (one third) of a capsule three times per day
750mg total per day = use 1/2 (half) of a capsule three times a day
1000mg total per day = use 2/3 (two thirds) of a capsule three times a day
1125mg total per day = use 3/4 caps (three quarters) of a capsule three times a day
(remember this is for a 500mg capsule of Curcumin only)

For the Life Extension Soy Isoflavones capsules containing 28mg of Genistein (most people use that):
21mg total per day = use 1/4 (quarter) of a capsule three times per day
28mg total per day = use 1/3 (one third) of a capsule three times per day
42mg total per day = use 1/2 (half) of a capsule three times per day
56mg total per day = use 2/3 (two thirds) of a capsule three times per day
63mg total per day = use 3/4 (three quarters) of a capsule three times per day
(remember this example is for the Life Extensions Soy Isoflavones Genistein containing 28mg of Genistein per capsule!)

If, for small children, you end up with a tiny amount and have to divide that into even smaller doses throughout the day, you could, for example, dissolve the total amount per day in let's say 40ml of hot milk and keep that in the fridge. Use 10ml of the solution each time if you give it 4 times a day, stir first.

The doses above are good doses to start with.
If you want to 'ease' into it, if that makes you more comfortable or if it's for a small child, I'd recommend starting with only the breakfast dose. Do that for 3 or 4 days, make sure everything goes well. When all is well, add the lunch dose. See how that goes for 3 or 4 days and add the dinner dose.
If, for the smaller children, you are having trouble with constipation because of the supplements, you can consider adding a stool softener like macrogol. We use it continuously and have had to go up on the dose of macrogol, when increasing the Curc/Gen dose.

If you want to go up on the dose at a later time, I recommend going up on Curcumin first and slowly increasing Genistein 3 or 4 days later (please note: going up on Genistein too fast - 100mg increase in one day - can cause a headache). Always give at least 20 times more Curc than Gen. 

The idea is to find the most effective dose and/or ratio between Curcumin and Genistein for yourself, while still comfortable with knowing that anything higher than the recommended daily dose by the manufacturer is considered experimental.

My personal thoughts on the best dose
J has stayed very healthy while using 600mg of Curcumin and 25mg of Genistein for 2 or 3 years. In 2012, after noticing the acute effects of Curcumin (see post: why we started giving Curcumin and Genistein in the first place) we went up on the dose to 1200mg Curcumin and 50mg Genistein. It was also time to adjust the dose to his weight at that time I think. His sweat test drop on that dose in 2013 was 28mmol/L (from 118mmol/L to 90mmol/L)
We went up further on the dose after the ex vivo tests in June 2013, very slowly and while being extremely observant of effects and side effects.

So a low dose (600mg Curc and 25mg Gen) has been very effective for J. Would it have been better if we'd given him a higher dose from the start? There is no answer to that. I don't know, we have nothing to compare it to. It would seem logical to some, BUT the human body is a complicated thing, it could also have caused side effects, that we don't know about.

So if you ask me what the 'most effective dose' is, I don't know. How much CFTR function is needed to stop progression of CF? The scientists have not agreed on that yet, it is not known. For J 600mg Curcumin and 25mg of Genistein seem to have been very helpful in keeping him healthy! Of course a significant sweat test drop is an excellent marker of improved CFTR function. However, it may very well be that Curcumin and Genistein levels in lung tissue are higher than levels in the skin on the underarm. We don't know that.

There are too little facts, things we know for sure, to give advice on the 'most effective dose'. We have J's health that stands out, but we don't know how he would have done without the supplements. We know he had a significant drop in sweat chloride, that's a fact. We know his dose and we know which brand we use, that's a fact. But we don't know how those facts correlate to lung health exactly or to long term side effects, those are estimates and thoughts, not facts. Higher doses come with increased risk of unknown side effects. 

Am I 100% comfortable with the dose we are giving J? To be honest, no. I have doubts if we are doing the right thing. Of course I have. I THINK we are doing the right thing. I THINK giving him the supplements is better than letting CF progress and possibly causing irreversible damage. I am taking a chance, thinking the odds are in our favor.

Would I be 100% comfortable giving Kalydeco? That answer is 'no' to that as well. It's been on the market for a relatively short time. It has been trialled in a relatively very small group of patients. We don't know about long term side effects yet. And for Kalydeco I am taking into account that the manufacturer is making billions of dollars and would have good reason to try to hide possible long term side effects. So no, I am not 100% comfortable with that either. Same thing, I would be taking a chance, thinking the odds are in our favor.

Weighing pro's against cons, I think we are doing the right thing. But I wonder sometimes if we shouldn't go back to a lower dose, since I think it has shown to be effective enough in preventing damage to the lungs, without side effects. The 59mmol/L drop in sweat chloride has given us a clear answer that it is effective in increasing CFTR function. My question is, how much increase do we need to stay healthy with the lowest possible risk for unknown side effects in a 7 year old child?

I also think we should consider the age of the person trying Curcumin and Genistein and the state of the lungs when deciding on what dose to try. For very small children, whose bodies are developing, I would stay on a low dose (somewhere close to the starting dose). Their lungs probably need a small increase in CFTR function to prevent damage and/or infection (as has probably been the case with J). At the same time their developing bodies might be at a higher risk for unknown side effects.

On the other hand, for older patients, with more progressive lung disease and fully developed bodies, the risk for side effects seem smaller to me and at the same time I think they would need a larger increase in CFTR function. Why? Because they probably are dealing with scarred lung tissue and chronic bacterial infection(s). Scar tissue does not have CFTR in it. So the unscarred tissue has to compensate for it. Most older patients are chronically infected with bacteria as well. Probably one would benefit from a higher dose also when trying to eradicate infection (again weighing pro's and cons). On the other hand, higher doses also increase the risk of interference with other medications. Lowering the dose temporarily might be an option when on IV"s for example. On the other hand, Curcumin is known to have synergistic effects with many antibiotics without increasing blood levels. Weighing pro's and cons…..

Adult patients can 'feel' what Curcumin and Genistein are doing for them. Small children have to be observed very closely, since often they can't tell us what is going on on the inside….

To conclude, to me it feels like a balancing act on an invisible tightrope. But I'm thankful I have found the invisible rope and that there is a chance of making it across unharmed. I'm also thankful I am able to share it with others.

If there are any new developments or patterns emerging from people that are trying Curcumin and Genistein, I will post them on the blog.
(this post was last edited on March 21, 2014)

Please see the top right hand side for links to other pages or click here:
Our story
Why I started Curcumin and Genistein in the first place
How to start?
What to expect?
Early results
What else do we do/use?
CFTR and Genistein
Curcumin general info


  1. Hi Sam ,i saw recently a product of non soy genistein from Sophora japonica, which has a pretty high concentration of genistein with an afordable price too.I dont know if it will be safe to use it

    1. Hi there! I don't know the product and don't know if it's safe. I know Red Clover is also a source of Genistein, but I don't know of anyone using it…. we have not used it ourselves either. Sorry I can't be of much help here…. If you are going to try it, I'd love to hear how it worked out for you… :)

  2. Red Baron:

    I think this is what u meant-
    Swanson Ultra Soy-Free Genistein 125 mg (

    I was wondering about this too... but in the end I decided that I will stay to " winning team" AOV 805... ;)

  3. Hi, Sam
    could you tell me how to start a dose treatment with CURCUMIN with PIPERINE and GENISTEIN for my daughter Gaelle 28 years old and weighing 52 kg. Gaelle has a double mutation of F508
    Many Thanks

    1. I'd start with 20mg/kg/day of Curcumin, so in her case 20x52= 1400mg Curcumin total per day (most probably that will turn out to be 3 caps of 500mg, 1 with breakfast, 1 with lunch and 1 with dinner).
      And 1mg/kg/day of Gen. So around 52mg of Genistein total for the day. AOV caps are 47,5mg, so one of those per day for example. I'd use half in the morning with breakfast and half in the evening with dinner.

  4. Hi Sam. I just seen your video on FB last night. My son is 17.5 years and weighs 67kilos. He has CF (obviously) double D508 and also Cf related liver disease and his platelets are low (50) because of Spleen / Liver issues. What would you recomend for him. I'm a bit confused and would really appreciate your input. Thanks M.

    1. Hello! :) First of all: compliments on the good weight! Well done! Second, I'm not a doctor and it's difiicult for me to give you good advice, I'm far from an expert on platelet counts etc. But I do know that Curcumin may have blood thinning properties, so that may not be a good idea in your case. See under "precautions" on this page: What you could consider is taking a Curcumin without Piperine (and not Phytosome). That way, most all of the Curcumin will stay in the intestine and will not be absorbed into the blood. It may have an anti-inflammatory function for the intestine itself, thereby supporting intestinal health and hopefully increase absorption of nutrients from food, and with that support overall health, but it will not reach the lungs. I have no idea if Genistein on its own (without Curcumin) would do anything for a patient with double delF508. I just checked for blood thinning properties and it seems Genistein may have those also (coincidently from the same website), see under "depletions and interactions" on this page: So again, maybe not a good idea. Are you a member of the DearCF group? I'd ask for other people's experiences and advice on how to possibly support liver (and spleen) health with natural products on that group. Sorry I couldn't be of more help.

  5. Dear wonderful Samantha, a big warmhearted THANK YOU for all the amazing research and experimenting that you have done and are still doing. It's filling me with gratitude and hope. Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge with the world. I will start taking Curcumin and Genisteine tomorrow (Delta F508 / 3272-26A>G mutation). Do you know if anyone has experienced any results with your 'supermoes' that has the same mutation? I will keep you posted on my results. Sending you love, light and laughter. Veel liefs, Martine

  6. Hi Sam,
    my friend in Chile is about to start her 2 kids 13 yo male and 19 yo female, both with Df508 on the Curcumin/piperine/genistein. However, her 13 yo is currently on Tobramycin nebulization for a PA infection. Does piperine have an inhibitory effect on Tobramycin? Should she start with the Curcumin without piperine ?
    Thank you so much for your amazing research!! My friend calls you her angel!

    1. Remember, I'm not a doctor or pharmacist, but to my knowledge Piperine has not interference/interaction with inhaled Tobramycin. I would start Curcumin with Piperine and Genistein while on it. I really hope it will help her children. Wish her good luck!! :) Sam

  7. Hi Sam,
    my friend, Maria Tere in Chile has started her 2 kids with gating mutations on the curcumin and genistein. So far so good, no new infection breaks in either kid despite some horrible weather and flu going around at the school.
    She wanted me to ask you if she should increase the dose because she thinks she is losing a lot in the preparation of the curcumin.
    She is using the Doctor's Best Curcumin C3 Complex with Bioperine (1000 mg), tablets and is having to grind them to dissolve in the milk. Should she increase or wait for 2 weeks or so to see if there is a more evident reaction (or lack of)? Both kids weigh in at 51 - 53 kg.
    Any suggestions?
    Thank you so much.

    1. Ah, I see. The tablets don't dissolve well. Either change to using the 500mg capsules or just swallow the tablets (or half tablets) without dissolving in milk. For their weight a good starting dose would be 1000mg total per day. Since they are probably difficult to cut into 3 parts and not wanting to waste them, I suggest she gives half a tablet in the morning and half a tablet at night. This may sound strange, but I have heard from someone that tried both capsules and tablets but that was much happier with the results of the capsules. (I will change the info on the blog)
      Either way, don't go up on the dose too quickly. Give it some time (at least 2 weeks) and check weight. Have they noticed any change in stool? I hope the tablets will turn out to work after all when swallowed (and not crushed and disolved in milk) if not, give the capsules a try. I have my fingers crossed here, hoping it will help the children. :) Sam

  8. Hi Sam,
    Starting my 10 yr old daughter on the combo. She has Delta F508. Her lung function and weight are very good (BMI above 50th percentile), so I'm not sure how to measure improvement. Any suggestions?

    1. You'll be looking for:
      Runny nose at the start of CurcGen (first week)
      More weight gain
      Fewer and less severe exacerbations
      Improved stools
      These would be good signs!
      In the long run you'll hooefully be able to tell the difference (6 months). I wish you loads of good luck!