Pain drags us down in many ways and prevents us from getting the most out of life. There are many strategies available to find the source of your pain and address it but understanding it and knowing how it works is a great first step to relief.
There are many different types of pain, including:
- Peripheral pain – inflammation or mechanical damage eg Torn muscle
- Neuropathic – damage or entrapment of peripheral nerves eg Shingles
- Central – central disturbance in pain processing eg Fibromyalgia
Are you taking the correct nutrient or herbs for your pain?
For example, the herb St John’s Wort is specific for nerve pain, White Willow Bark is more specific to peripheral pain and Corydalis for central pain. The wonderful thing about herbs are that they have other actions that can help multiple systems.
Often clients present with a number of symptoms and focusing on just one will not be effective. Naturopath’s take into consideration all the other driving factors that may be contributing to your pain. Some of these factors include poor sleep, infections, environmental toxins, psychological factors etc.
Digestion is a very important part of this picture, as studies have shown that gut inflammation, resulting in a leaky gut, promotes inflammatory markers, leading to neuroinflammation (aka brain inflammation) which ultimately results in systemic inflammation.
FIBROMYALGIA SYNDROME has had many definitions over time, it is a chronic pain relating to sore muscles all over the body. There are many pieces to this mosaic disease which is often poorly managed by pharmaceutical drugs. Increased brain sensitivity to pain receptors and altered neurotransmitter (dopamine and serotonin) response have been linked to pain perception.
Therapeutic treatment of fibromyalgia is individualised and may include:
- Enhancing sleep
- Hormonal support
- Immune support
- Nutritional support –vitamin D deficiency has been linked to fibromyalgia
- Exercise – graded exercise is important to increase blood flow and condition the muscles
- Pain and inflammation management
- Reducing oxidative stress
- Enhancing mitochondrial (power houses in cells) function
- Supporting microcirculation
- Dysbiosis management (bacteria balance and gut health)
Five things you can add to your diet today to help yourself!
- Include beetroot daily (fresh is best, make a juice or grate with carrot in a salad)
- Increase cacao intake (1-2 square of dark, dairy free quality chocolate –or make your own!)
- Increase berry intake (variety is the key to get a range of anthocyanins)
- Eat raw crushed garlic daily (1/2 – 1 clove)
- Increase intake of herbs and spices (eg ginger, turmeric, and drink quality green tea)
(Thanks to Professor Kerry Bone for sharing these tips)