What is an anti-inflammatory? The FDA describes it as a medication to reduce inflammation (the body’s response to surgery, injury, irritation, or infection). There are common anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs) out there, such as Ibuprofen, Advil, Motrin and Aleve, but for those who suffer with chronic inflammation, these can have severe side effects and are not healthy to take on an ongoing basis. How long is too long? It differs. We know if some people take too much for too long that it can have damaging effects, but it could be two weeks for one person, and two months for another. At any rate, if you have to go beyond the directions on the label, you should be under a physician’s care.
A quick online search will reveal that although mostly beneficial when taken on a rare occasion to treat headache, fever and mild inflammation, if any of the NSAIDs are taken in higher doses than what is prescribed on their labels, or for any ongoing period of time, the risks can include stomach upset, stomach ulcers which may bleed, kidney damage and liver damage, to name a few. A report in The Lancet said NSAIDs actually ate away at joint bone reducing the success in hip replacement surgery. NSAIDs can increase the risk of cardiovascular problems such as heart attack and stroke, may inhibit your body’s natural healing response, and can create stomach ulcers. (http://worstpills.org)
A natural alternative would be the better course of treatment for someone experiencing chronic inflammation. Do you have chronic inflammation? If you are experiencing chronic pain (pain persisting beyond normal healing time, or for more than 6 months) you are likely experiencing chronic inflammation. It is always best to check with your physician if you are uncertain. Similarly, chronic inflammation is inflammation that persists beyond normal healing time and instead of tissue healing, results in tissue destruction and ongoing pain.
Here is a list of suggestions for reducing inflammation naturally:
What you should eat:
- Lots of fruits and brightly colored vegetables
- Wild seafood
- Herbs and foods such as turmeric, oregano, garlic, green tea, blueberries, ginger, and goji berries
- More essential fatty acids – omega 3, nuts, seeds (especially walnuts and freshly ground flaxseed.)
- A multivitamin
What you shouldn’t eat:
- Cut out sugar and refined carbohydrates
- Cut out gluten-containing foods (wheat flour and oats)
- Cut out known allergens
What you should do:
- Get moving – physical activity daily
- Get resting – meaning you need to relax as well as get a good night’s sleep
- Use natural products
- Detoxify your system
What you shouldn’t do:
- Give up
- Use stimulants
There are alternatives to OTC NSAID medications for inflammation that may otherwise cause you harm. Consider this list, also, if you are considering coming for our therapy. If you can get a leg up on any inflammatory processes in your body before coming for treatment, you will respond to the treatment that much better!