There are several data in the literature indicating a great variety of pharmacological activities of Curcuma longa L. (Zingiberaceae), which exhibit anti-inflammatory, anti-human immunodeficiency virus, anti-bacteria, antioxidant effects and nematocidal activities. Curcumin is a major component in Curcuma longa L., being responsible for its biological actions. Other extracts of this plant has been showing potency too. In vitro, curcumin exhibits anti-parasitic, antispasmodic, anti-inflammatory and gastrointestinal effects; and also inhibits carcinogenesis and cancer growth. In vivo, there are experiments showing the anti-parasitic, anti-inflammatory potency of curcumin and extracts of C. longa L. by parenteral and oral application in animal models. In this present work we make an overview of the pharmacological activities of C. longa L., showing its importance.