In today’s Health Watch, Dr. Isaac Eliaz reveals the hidden dangers of common pain relievers. And he lists the best natural supplements that bring you safe relief… Including one little-known extract that treats the root cause of pain.
In Good Health,
Executive Director, INH Health Watch
By Dr. Isaac Eliaz, M.D.
Pain can dominate our lives. Regardless of where it occurs in the body, pain can make simple activities difficult, ruin our ability to concentrate, and interfere with mobility.
For some, every movement must be calculated to avoid discomfort. This can lead to a more sedentary lifestyle, which causes more inflammation, leading to more pain. A true downward spiral. So what can we do about it?
Most people address pain with over-the-counter remedies, such as ibuprofen and acetaminophen. These are the most commonly used drugs in the U.S.
In fact, they are frequently overused due to their assumed safety. They’re so readily available even children can buy them.
Hidden Dangers of Pain Relievers
While these drugs can temporarily reduce inflammation and block pain signals, they don’t get to the root of the problem. Furthermore, research suggests these drugs have more serious side effects than previously believed. They can contribute to intestinal damage, liver failure, and more. Prescription pain medications are much more problematic, while also being dangerously addicting.
Ideally, we want pain treatment that alleviates discomfort, addresses root causes, and promotes health and vitality. A number of alternative approaches meet this description.
10 Pain-Fighting Supplements
These botanicals and nutrients are shown to reduce various types of pain, while offering other important health benefits:
- Turmeric: It is sold in capsules, extracts, powders, and as a whole root. This common Indian spice has a well-deserved reputation for controlling pain and supporting longevity. It is a powerful and versatile anti-inflammatory ingredient. Turmeric supports circulation, detoxification, immunity, and tissue repair.
- Ginger: A relative of turmeric, ginger can reduce inflammation and increase circulation. It is particularly helpful for joint pain and intestinal discomfort. Powdered ginger can be taken in a capsule or brewed as tea. Fresh ginger root is a wonderful addition to stir fry, soups, desserts, and other dishes.
- Capsaicin: Derived from hot peppers, capsaicin has long been known for its ability to relieve pain. It’s often used as a topical cream.
- Vitamin D: Deficiency of this nutrient has been linked to chronic pain. One study compared pain medication requirements among people with normal and decreased vitamin D levels. Those deficient in vitamin D needed almost twice as much pain medication.
- Vitamin C: Another powerful anti-inflammatory ingredient, vitamin C has been found to reduce pain and help people recover from sports injuries.
- B Vitamins: This family of nutrients is useful in treating nerve pain, particularly in diabetics.
- Acetyl-L-carnitine: This amino acid has also been shown to relieve diabetic nerve pain.
- Glucosamine: It can help relieve stiff, arthritic joints.
- Magnesium: This mineral has been shown to control NMDA, a neurochemical associated with pain. Magnesium also helps relax stiff or spasmodic muscles and improve circulation. In addition to taking magnesium orally, there are topical forms as well as the traditional Epsom salts you can add to a bath.
- Boswellia: Also known as Indian frankincense, this resin from the Boswellia serrata tree contains active components which help reduce inflammation and pain. It can be taken as a supplement or used topically.
Revealed: The Real Cause of Chronic Pain
There’s one other supplement I want to tell you about. It is not well known, but it can be extremely effective.
A fast-growing body of research has identified a major culprit in chronic inflammation. It is a “rogue protein” called galectin-3.
Galectin-3 drives inflammation, which in turn causes fibrosis (excessive scar tissue). This leads to joint stiffness and pain.
In my practice, I recommend patients control their galectin-3 levels with a supplement called modified citrus pectin (MCP).
Derived from citrus peels, MCP has the unique ability to enter the circulation and bind to galectin-3. This prevents it from wreaking havoc throughout the body. MCP also safely detoxifies pro-inflammatory heavy metals such as lead, mercury, and arsenic. These can accumulate in joints and tissues.
Next time pain tries to take over your life, don’t automatically reach for risky medications. Try one of the natural remedies above. You’ll not only get genuine pain relief, your overall health will improve.
Dr. Isaac Eliaz, M.D., is one of the nation’s premier integrative physicians. He has been a pioneer in holistic medicine since the 1980s and has published numerous peer-reviewed research papers. He is founder and medical director of Amitabha Medical Clinic in Santa Rosa, Calif., which specializes in cancer and chronic conditions.
Visit his website at www.dreliaz.org