What is inflammation?
Inflammation is our bodies natural reaction to illness or injury. In the short-term, 'acute' inflammation' is helpful as it causes more red and white blood cells to flood the area that's damaged to aid tissue healing, However, if inflammation persists, it can be harmful and become chronic. Chronic inflammation is involved in numerous health conditions such as arthritis, joint pain, autoimmune conditions and gut disorders.
Natural remedies Vs pharmaceutical drugs
I think you'll agree with me when I say that the art of everyday natural medicine has been lost in the Western world over the ages. It's the 'norm' for us to reach for those Pharmaceutical drugs to ease aches and pains that usually come with inflammation. However, some of these drugs have side effects and aren't always helpful. With more of us looking for more organic remedies, it is possible to reduce inflammation naturally.
Our top 3 natural remedies for reducing chronic inflammation and pain
1. Turmeric - many herbs and spices are anti-inflammatory. Turmeric contains curcumin which seems to exert a positive effect on people suffering from various types of cancer, fatty liver disease, depression, arthritis, skin diseases, and gut inflammation (source). In my house, it is our go to natural remedy for joint pain for both humans and dogs. The exact dose depends on the medical condition. The Arthritis Foundation suggests taking turmeric capsules (400 to 600 mg) 3 times per day, however, studies have found that taking one gram of turmeric per day can be beneficial. Turmeric can be taken in capsule form, in a liquid shot where powder is added to a liquid, or it can be blended with a drink or smoothies.
2. Ginger - Studies have shown that ginger can be useful in treating several conditions such as arthritis and pain. It can limit the production of cytokines and the activity of cyclooxygenase enzymes, which promote inflammation. Experts say that consuming up to 4g of ginger a day may help manage inflammation and pain. It can be taken in capsules, in root form or can be rubbed on an affected area in a cream. To make a ginger tea, boil the ginger root in water for ten to twenty minutes, add honey or lemon to taste.
3. Green tea - This substance has many health benefits from weight loss to anti-inflammatory properties in arthritis. The polyphenols in the tea have been shown to inhibit inflammation and enzyme activities responsible for joint destruction in arthritis (source), and can therefore slow the progression of arthritic diseases. If you're not used to drinking green tea, it's best to start with one cup per day steeping one teaspoon in very very hot (but not boiling) water for 1-3 minutes. You can add honey or lemon to taste.
There are many other herbs, spices and dietary remedies that have anti-inflammatory properties such as fiber, thyme, white willow bark and frankincense. However, there is not as much research on these. This doesn't mean that they are not as effective, just that we don't know for sure how they work. If you are struggling with chronic pain and inflammation, we would always recommend you get advice from your Doctor or Physiotherapist. Seek out a natural herbalist if you would like more advice on herbal pain relief.
If you're struggling with body aches and pain and it's inhibiting your lifestyle, you can take action at any time. Why not check out our Starter Programme for friendly advice and a treatment regimen that you can start today.