Natural May Not Be Best, But They Are An Alternative
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory’s like Ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil, Nuprin) and Naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn) are commonly used for relieving pain and inflammation. However, because of the side-effects associated with long-term use of these NSAID’s and their more powerful cousins – prescribed steroidal medications – there is much interest in natural remedies for relief.
Here are 7 natural remedies to consider:
Omega -3 (n-3) Fish oil – anti-inflammatory, arthritis. 1.5g – 5g/d
Recognized as an effective natural inflammation supplement.
Capsaicin Oil – muscle soreness, local application for pain relief
Used on the skin for relief of joint, muscle and nerve pain.
Oil of Camphor – muscle soreness, local application for pain relief
Used in Vick’s Vapor rub and FDA approved Camphor is used on the skin as a pain relief rub and to alleviate itching.
White Willow Bark – replacement for aspirin 240 mg/d
Curcumin – inflammation and arthritis. 400-600 mg 3x/d
Also know as the spice Turmeric, curcumin has been used for centuries in a variety of medicinal capacities. At least six human trials have demonstrated its safety and benefit as an anti-inflammatory.
Green Tea Extract – arthritic diseases, inflammation 300-400 mg.
Some research shows the catechins in green tea may also have a role in the prevention, delay and potential repair of degenerative joint injuries.
Boswellia Serrata Resin (Frankincense) – inflammation 300-500mg 3x/d
When used in combination with Curcumin one study showed it was more effective than the diclofenac when used to treat swelling and pain associated with arthritis.
Natural remedies can have negative effects and are not problem free
- Fish oil is may not be advised for those on anti-coagulants/blood thinners.
- Curcumin should be avoided when high doses of NSAIDS are being used or in people with peptic ulcer disease. Caution with anticoagulants medications should also be taken.
- Green Tea Extract – caffeine content may cause stomach irritation.
- Boswellia Serrata Resin (Frankincense) – reported intolerances include nausea, diarrhea, acid reflux.
The natural chemical compounds found in these supplements are powerful and have the potential for negative reactions with prescription drugs or side effects of their own. Their use should not be secret and always part of the discussion with your medical providers.
*Always check with your doctor before changing or starting new medications and it is important to disclose natural remedies as they often have drug interactions.
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