Inflammation is one of the leading causes of many common diseases.
People who encounter conditions that cause chronic pain have a tendency to go for powerful prescription drugs first. While you should still seek medical help, this isn’t always the only solution.
Pain medication can be expensive and habit forming, so not all pain sufferers will consider this as a route to freedom from their condition. In addition to this, there are a growing number of cases and studies that suggest allergic or pseudo allergic reactions can occur through use.
When facing these kinds of situations, what can patients do to help themselves? A number of pain sufferers are turning to a more natural approach by using the methods of the past to treat the ailments of the present.
Cloves contain an agent called eugenol, which has been found to reduce pain during topical application. Recent studies concluded that clove gel was just as effective as a chemical gel at reducing pain in the gums of test subjects.
The FDA has asserted that more testing is needed, but anyone who has chewed on cloves is aware of its numbing effect.
Carnosic acid and carnosol are the chief anti-inflammatory molecules that give sage its health benefits and contribute to its flavor/aroma. Sage is studied for its protective effect against inflammation-based neurological conditions like Alzheimer’s.
This tasty root is famous for being an excellent ingredient in cookies and Asian dishes, but it’s also been found to have useful anti-inflammatory properties. One study of 100 chronic migraine sufferers found that ginger was similarly effective to the drug sumatriptan.
The upside of ginger is that it does not have the side effects of pharmaceutical pain medication.
Fennel has been used for thousands of years to help with digestion issues, and stop painful bloating, but one of the other amazing things about fennel is its ability to help soothe muscle pain. This is caused by its tendency to relax muscles and has been associated with relief from menstrual pain in women.
Fennel is also high in some of the most important dietary minerals iron, manganese, magnesium, and calcium.
In traditional Chinese medicine, the use of nutmeg is well known for being able to fight inflammation of the joints. It can be ingested in the form of teas and placed in food for the desired effect. It is also known to reduce abdominal aches and pains.
The anti-inflammatory power in this spice comes from a component called curcumin, which also gives turmeric its deep yellow color. Curcumin is part of the ginger family, and has many of the same pain-relieving properties.
This interesting spice with a deceptive name comes from the Jamaican bayberry tree. It is in the top 10 most anti-inflammatory spices.
It can be used both internally and topically for pains.
People also use capsaicin, present in chili peppers, for natural pain relief. This substance can cause a mild burning or tingling sensation when a person applies it topically.
Cinnamon has the ability to lower blood sugar in diabetics by activating insulin receptors. Like many other herbs and spices, cinnamon also has a host of compounds with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that can lessen the likelihood of cellular damage and chronic disease.
Rosemary contains some of the same antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds as sage, and yet another that’s appropriately named “rosmarinic acid”.
Both rosemary and sage act by increasing the activity of superoxide dismutase, an enzyme that removes superoxide, the potent free radical that’s associated with chronic inflammation
Adding herbs and spices to your diet for their anti-inflammatory properties is usually safe, in order to keep it that way, only use herbs or supplements at least two hours before or after taking your medication. Some should be taken with a meal.
Always avoid taking any supplements at least an hour before or after when using any products with caffeine.