How can Naturopathy help you with pain management?
Naturopathic medicine is based on identifying and treating the cause of imbalance within the body, rather than just suppressing symptoms. It encompasses the use of both herbal and nutritional medicine. The cause of pain is inflammation, which is an immune response stimulated by the body to repair damaged tissues. These pain signals are the body’s way of communicating with us to let us know something is wrong so that we can help it to heal.
How can we reduce pain?
Quite easily with 3 easy steps..
1. We need to ensure we are getting enough blood flow to the area and a great facilitator of this is Turmeric. Turmeric improves circulation, enabling our blood to carry the nutrients necessary for repair to the damaged area. You can increase your intake of turmeric in the diet by using a powdered form in cooking (especially in curries, yum!) or in a turmeric latte, adding fresh grated turmeric to a salad/stir-fry or using it to make a tea.
2. Reduce your intake of inflammatory foods. Inflammatory foods include all fast and processed foods, especially those containing processed meats, wheat, sugar and dairy. These foods can cause inflammation throughout the whole body (systemic inflammation), which can further damage already injured tissues causing more pain in the affected area.
3. Opt for an anti-inflammatory diet. Anti-inflammatory diets are high in foods that contain anti-inflammatory properties, such as all unprocessed vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds, oily fish such as salmon and mackerel, and herbs and spices such as turmeric, ginger, garlic, thyme and rosemary. These foods can help to lower systemic inflammation and therefore reduce pain.
Of course, there are many ways to manage pain and often a multimodality approach is necessary. Regular massage, acupuncture, float therapy, kinesiology, physiotherapy and sauna use are but some of the other therapies to consider for relief from chronic pain.
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