Researchers are continually finding that the food you cook and eat every day can deliver effective pain relief more safely than prescription medicine can.

Using food to your advantage

More than four centuries ago, in Doctor Faustus, playwright Christopher Marlowe first expressed the idea that misery loves company. Unfortunately, he seems to have been right. Almost 1.6 billion people across the globe experience chronic pain, with about one in every 25 people worldwide contending with neuropathy, according to the American Academy of Pain Medicine (AAPM).

In the United States, those general trends hold true, with 116 million men and women diagnosed with pain conditions – representing more than one out of every three US adults. Painkillers are often effective, but they aren’t as safe as it may seem, often leading to devastating side effects and addiction without even addressing the root issue.

More and more chronic pain patients are turning away from inflammatory, processed junk food and refined grains to whole foods – especially ones with pain relief properties.

Here are three foods that many people use as all-natural medicine:

Cherries for muscle pain & osteoarthritis (OA)

In an article featured in the Journal of Nutrition, researchers revealed that study participants who had cherries at the start of every day brought inflammation down to 75% of its original level.

That’s thanks to anthocyanins, phytonutrients that “block inflammation and … inhibit pain enzymes, just like aspirin, naproxen, and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories,” according to Michigan State University chemist Muraleedharan Nair, PhD.

Sardines, herring, and salmon for neck, back & joint pain

Research published in Surgical Neurology showed that those who took at least 1200 mg of DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) and EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) daily reduced the severity of neck and back pain. When circulation in the spinal disks is poor, they don’t get the nutrients that they need, leading to degeneration.

Omega-3 fatty acids enhance circulation and deliver anti-inflammatory compounds to the nerves and blood vessels.

Beyond the pain relief benefits, explains Joseph C. Maroon, MD, “[a]ny amount of fish oil is beneficial for cardiovascular protection and mood elevation.”

Ginger for migraine, OA & sore muscles

Ginger has long been believed to soothe the digestive tract. Researchers think that it could block a vomit-inducing receptor and that it helps to break down gas in the intestines. Plus, it has anti-inflammatory properties and can alleviate pain.

Comprehensive, natural pain relief

Are you suffering from chronic pain? Changing your diet can certainly help, but sometimes it’s not enough. At Health Star Clinic, our pain management programs are designed to treat the source of your pain quickly and effectively. Get help now!