Mainstream medicine’s top weapons against inflammation are glucocorticoid drugs. They include cortisone and prednisone.
These drugs are also called steroids. But they aren’t the kind that give you muscle. Instead, they change your metabolism to tamp down inflammation.
Doctors prescribe them for a wide variety of conditions. They include autoimmune disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, colitis, psoriasis, and eczema. They are also used for asthma and allergies.[i]
Some four million Americans take these drugs regularly. And millions more take them as needed. Most probably don’t know that these medications can give them diabetes.
In a new study, researchers gave volunteers the steroid drug prednisolone (Omnipred, Orapred). After just a week, the subjects showed signs of emerging diabetes. Their bodies were less responsive to insulin.
Their diabetes risk was dose-dependent. The more prednisolone they took, the more insulin insensitive they became.
Dr. Riccardo Pofi was one of the study authors. He noted that even taken for a short time at low doses, “glucose metabolism is impaired, suggesting an increased risk of diabetes with continued treatment.”[ii]
5 Natural Inflammation Fighters
Steroid drugs can be life-saving when severe inflammation rages out of control. But they should be used only in dire circumstances when their side effects are worth the risk.
For less serious inflammation, these five natural treatments can help.
- Moringa oleifera. It’s also known as the “Tree of Immortality” or “Miracle Tree.” This bush, native to the African savannah, has been used in folk medicine for hundreds of years. Research shows that it is a more effective anti-inflammatory than the drug Indocin.[iii]
Moringa oleifera supplements, powders, and teas are widely sold online and in health food stores.
- Fish oil. Studies show that omega-3 essential fatty acids in fish oil reduce inflammation. Look for brands that contain the triglyceride form of fish oil. It should be noted on the label.[iv]
A high-quality fish oil will be relatively free of any fishy tastes or smells. The oil should be translucent and not cloudy. You’re more likely to find quality fish oil supplements at health food stores and online than at drug stores and supermarkets.
If you’re on a blood-thinning medication, check with your doctor before taking fish oil.
- Yoga. Research from the University of Hong Kong shows yoga lowers chronic inflammation. It seems to work by reducing stress.
You can find yoga poses that target inflammation here.
- Low-carb diet. Spikes of blood sugar and insulin cause biochemical and hormonal changes that trigger inflammation.
Follow a low-carb diet by avoiding fruit juices, sugar-sweetened drinks and desserts and carb-rich foods like mashed potatoes, pasta, white rice, bread and cereals.[v]
- Ginger. Research shows that two compounds in ginger supplements—gingerol and zingerone—reduce inflammation.[vi] [vii]
Take1,000 to 2,000 mg a day.
Keep in mind that ginger can increase the effect of aspirin and other blood thinners.
Unless you’re facing a serious, life-threatening condition, try these natural treatments before turning to steroids. They put out the fire of inflammation without giving you diabetes.
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