Natural Pain Killers
In modern society, pain is looked at as an inconvenience, rather than a sign of something deeper within the body. Pain is one of your body’s ways of communicating that something is “off” under the surface. Instead of listening to our body and identifying the root cause of pain, we often reach for prescription pain medication and over the counter anti-inflammatories and pain-relievers like Advil, Tylenol, codeine and more for relief of minor headaches, joint pain and even hangovers. Drugs like Advil and Tylenol temporarily block the formation of inflammatory compounds which only help for a short period of time. Often, this mean you’re reaching for more drugs in as little as two hours, for more pain relief.
The use of these drugs long-term can lead to major problems, specifically in the digestive system and liver. The lining of your stomach can become eroded, the delicate tissue of the intestines can become damaged, your liver and kidneys are strained with can lead to kidney or liver damage.
Instead of relying on prescription pain medications or over-the-counter anti-inflammatories or analgesics, consider identifying the cause of your pain and resolving the underlying issues.
Turmeric- Anti-inflammatory with anti-cancer properties. Improves circulation and prevents blood clotting. The active ingredient, curcumin, is known for lowering inflammation in the body by blocking two enzymes that cause swelling and inflammation.
Try: Taking curcumin/turmeric capsules, make a turmeric tea (make sure when steeping you cover your mug, leaving it uncovered allows all the beneficial nutrients to seep out), add to roasted veggies and smoothies.
Capsaicin- Reduces muscle, joint, and nerve pain by stopping substance P from transmitting pain signals to the brain.
To Use: use gel or cream form and apply 3-4 times/day
Ginger- A powerful anti-inflammatory more effective than most pain-killers for pain relief. Ginger has anti-oxidant effects to break down existing acidity and inflammation in the synovial fluid (fluid between your joints that help with smooth mobility)
Try: In teas, put in smoothies, use with roasted vegetables.
Valerian Root- Reduces nerve sensitivity and alleviates the feeling of pain. Helps relieve insomnia, stress, anxiety, irritability, and tension.
Try: Drinking valerian tea for natural pain relief, and body aches.
Magnesium- Magnesium can help get rid of migraines, fibromyalgia and muscle spasms and is especially useful for pregnant women with muscle spasms and cramps.
Try: eating magnesium-rich foods such as sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds. Magnesium supplements, such as Natural Calm, before bed, to calm the body.
Boswellia - Known as frankincense. Reduces inflammation and pain.
Try: Using topically.
White Willow Bark- Contains salicin which converts to salicylic acid in the stomach which is the natural component found in aspirin. Since aspirin is synthetic, it irritates the stomach lining causing more internal inflammation. Since White Willow Bark contains the non-synthetic salicin it can naturally relieve inflammation, pain, and fever.
Try: 1-2 full droppers from a white willow bark tincture daily.
Chamomile, sage and lavender help to relax muscles and calm the mind. Aromatherapy is known to relieve stress which is often the root of most pain in the body.
Try: Rubbing oils on to temples, sore joints, chest, sore muscles for relief. Use essential oils through a diffuser in your home, office, bedroom etc. For headache relief, try rubbing peppermint oil on the temples.
There are plenty of natural health alternatives to pain relief that will not cause destruction to your body like prescription pain medications or over-the-counter drugs. Better yet, for long-term relief of pain, work with a natural health provider to identify the underlying root cause of your pain and work through a treatment plan with nutrition, lifestyle and supporting supplements.