Painkillers like ibuprofen and acetaminophen are commonly used to soothe our daily aches. Many of these over-the-counter drugs are doing more harm to your body and are widely overused for chronic pain. They are addictive and can cause serious damage to the liver, kidneys, and intestines. Therefore more and more people are seeking natural alternatives to ease pain and heal their body.
There are foods that naturally decrease inflammation, normalize the body’s responses, and lessen pain. Many of these foods speed healing, protect the cells from damage, and deliver essential vitamins, minerals, or other nutrients while they are at it. Please note however, that pain or other symptoms which persist could be a sign of something more serious and may require medical intervention. If you are concerned, consult your medical practitioner. Here are some of the natural pain killers that can be easily found in your kitchen.
1. Ginger – This spice is often used to reduce nausea, but it has been shown to be just as effective as aspirin or ibuprofen in reducing pain. Gingerol, the active ingredient in ginger, works well against rheumatoid arthritis in studies and is also being looked at for its anticancer properties.
2. Turmeric – Turmeric has been used for ages in Ayurvedic medicine to fight inflammation, promote detoxification, repair tissues, relief pain, and improve overall health. Turmeric works as a powerful natural painkiller to ease chronic pain, muscle aches, back pain, toothaches, and arthritis pain. Turmeric can be used to flavor many of your dishes or can be added to tea, smoothie, or juice recipes.
3. Coconut Oil – Coconut oil has some natural antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties. This makes it a good choice to get your immune system on track while reducing pain. Many people use it internally and externally for back and joint pain.
4. Chilly Pepper – If you like spicy food, then I have some good news for you. Capsaicin, the main compound of many hot peppers, has pain-relieving properties. It interferes and weakens pain signals going to your brain. Capsaicin works wonders to treat joint pain, fibromyalgia, shingles, migraines, and headaches. If you can bear the taste add up to 3 teaspoons cayenne pepper to one glass of water and drink for instant relief.
5. Garlic – In the ancient world, garlic played a starring role as painkiller. Chop up a clove of garlic and heat it in a tablespoon of olive oil or mustard oil. Apply it all over aching joints—you will feel tremendous relief from arthritic pain. It is quite popular as a home remedy for alleviating toothache—3 cloves of garlic + a pinch of salt. Crush them together and apply on the affected tooth for quick relief.
6. Cloves – A proven ally in your battle against toothache. Toothpastes featuring clove are beneficial for oral health. You can simply dab a little clove oil sprinkled on a cotton swab on the aching tooth—it works like magic.
7. Apple Cider Vinegar – Stir 1 tbsp. of cider vinegar into 1 cup of plain water. Sip slowly for relief from heartburn. Since the apple cider vinegar is alkaline-forming, it has an overall alkalizing effect on the body, which most people need due to our modern, acid-forming diets.
8. Cherries – Cherries are an excellent and yummy way to ease arthritis, gout, or chronic headaches. Cherries’ high levels of anthocyanins are responsible for their anti-inflammatory and pain relieving effect. These tiny compounds eliminate enzymes responsible for tissue inflammation and pain.
9. Pineapple – The bromelain in pineapple is known to ease bloated tummy and heaviness. It also improves circulation, stopping cramps and inhibiting inflammation. It may help rid the body of inflammatory compounds that contribute to arthritis.
10. Oats – They have been seen to play a role in easing menstrual cramps and bring relief from endometriosis. Oats are loaded with the anti-cramping mineral magnesium. They are also one of the best sources of dietary zinc for women who suffer from painful periods.