All pain is caused by inflammation and inflammatory reactions. Chronic inflammation plays an important role in heart disease; arthritis; asthma; cancer and dementia.
By controlling inflammation; we should be able to control our pain and reduce our chances of developing diseases.
Did you know that foods can increase inflammation? Sugar and white flour are the main culprits. The good news is that foods can also reduce inflammation and chronic inflammation and fight cancer and other diseases.
The best part is that all of these foods taste great. And it’s easy to incorporate them into your diet. Except number 2; if you’re a werewolf. Number 4 will keep everyone amused and number 9 can remind you that mom is always right!
Omega-3 fatty acids pain relief
This is a very healthy fat found in many sources. Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids are known for their ability to fight inflammation. In fact; studies have shown that mice fed extra virgin olive oil slowed the development of arthritis and reduced joint inflammation. Markers of inflammation decreased by 1/3 to ½.
Oily fish such as salmon; tuna; trout and mackerel are the best source of omega-3 fatty acids. Chia seeds; walnuts; omega-3 rich eggs; and walnuts are also rich in omega-3 fatty acids. You can see a reduction in pain as well as dozens of other benefits.
Garlic pain relief
Garlic; onions and leeks contain quercetin; an antioxidant that can relieve inflammation. Garlic is particularly effective. You can take about 4 cloves of raw garlic or use powder or an aged supplement. Since so much raw garlic can irritate the stomach; most experts recommend aged garlic. You’ll get the benefits without having to breathe in and sweat out the garlic.
Garlic also fights cancer and can reduce the risk of heart disease and dementia. You can’t go wrong with garlic!
Looking for a drink that doesn’t promote inflammation like sodas? Try sour cherry juice. Sour cherries contain an antioxidant; anthocyanin; which is known for its anti-inflammatory properties. Research suggests that sour cherries are as effective as NSAIDs and much safer.
Eight ounces of Montmorency cherry juice a day can relieve pain and stiffness. Just don’t spoil the health benefits by adding sugar or artificial sweeteners.
Green Tea pain relief
Green tea is an anti-inflammatory superfood. It is so good for all parts of the body that you should drink it even if you are not in pain. Green tea contains antioxidants that reduce inflammation. Other health benefits include preventing cancer; melting belly fat; helping with hangovers and relieving depression.
It doesn’t contain much caffeine; so you can drink it in the afternoon or evening without disrupting your sleep cycle. Don’t add sweeteners and destroy its benefits.
Whole grains and beans
Whole grains and legumes have an anti-inflammatory effect; while their cousins; white flour and white rice; can aggravate chronic inflammation. Foods such as oats; chia seeds; rolled oats and brown or wild rice reduce C-reactive protein (CRP) levels. These proteins are “markers” of inflammation that are associated with heart disease; diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis.
Fiber is also very important for maintaining gut health; losing weight; fighting heart disease and lowering blood pressure. Choose fiber carefully and don’t cover it with butter; cheese or other pro-inflammatory foods.
Turmeric is a spice that has long been used in folk medicine to fight inflammatory diseases. There is now research evidence to support these claims. Turmeric is rich in curcumin; an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory.
Since you probably can’t eat enough turmeric to get its effects; you can supplement it with a pinch of black pepper or drink turmeric tea. Put a teaspoon of ground turmeric in boiling water and let it steep for 10 minutes. Add a little lemon juice and a pinch of black pepper and enjoy the tea.
Broccoli; Brussels sprouts and cabbage
Broccoli; Brussels sprouts and cabbage may not be everyone’s favorite foods; but they are really good for your health. These cruciferous vegetables are rich in antioxidants that protect cells from free radicals; which are blamed for causing chronic inflammation. You can easily add broccoli to stews and salads.
If you like fermented foods like sauerkraut; you’re in luck. There is a strong link between fermented foods and reducing chronic inflammation. Fermented foods also fight depression; making you feel better overall.
Another spice; ginger is a potent anti-inflammatory. You can consume it as a tea or in your meals; or snack on candied ginger in moderation. One study showed that ginger extract helped 63% of participants suffering from knee pain due to osteoarthritis. Two grams of ginger a day has been shown to relieve muscle pain. If you have been exercising; ginger can help you feel better.
Broths or savory soups; made by cooking vegetables; fish or meat with herbs; are excellent for fighting inflammation. Chicken broth is said to be good for the body and mind; and it is true. Chicken broth is antiviral; anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. Add some garlic; kale or spinach and some mushrooms and you have a meal that will help you fight diseases associated with inflammation.
Broths are ideal if you are sick; recovering from surgery or just want to help your body feel better.
Research shows that pain comes from inflammation and that some really nasty diseases are caused by chronic inflammation. You can relieve pain and fight chronic disease by eating foods that reduce inflammation. It is also helpful to avoid foods that promote inflammation; such as sugar and white flour.
All of the foods we have listed have been scientifically proven to have pain-relieving properties. They may not work as fast as NSAIDs or other medications; but they are much healthier for the liver. Healthy eating and weight loss also have an analgesic effect; as excess weight places a burden on the joints and abdominal fat is associated with chronic inflammation.