Thursday, June 19, 2014

Pain relief without opiates or OTC pain killers....

Today's Post:  Thursday, 6-19-2014

Pain relief without opiates or OTC "pain killers" in over Fourteen ways!

At the end of May, Dr Al Sears listed some methods he found to work in an email he sent.

In A below, I've listed some from Dr Sears with some of my additions and comments in [ ] style parentheses.

Then in part B, I list several others that are as effective and some even more effective than the ones in his list but are not in his list.

By all means try the ones in the two lists that sound like a fit to you and try the ones that look to be most effective if you can.

Since neither opiates nor OTC pain relievers help heal the underlying problems and have dangerous side effects, I think a good case can be made to not use OTC pain relievers at all!

(The methods listed here avoid the liver and hear damage that the OTC pain relievers cause in some people and the too easy to do overdoses in most people.)

And be extremely careful of using opiates which you DO need a doctor's prescription to use and where an overdose can kill you.

Their best use is for pain so severe you can't think straight or sleep without pain relief that strong.

Even then, using the minimum tolerable dose for the shortest possible time is the best policy with opiates.

A.  Dr Sears' list:  

I [Dr Sears] use natural pain relievers that will help you get going again and get right back in the action.

You probably won’t hear about any of these from a standard medical doctor.

But I can tell you from years of use in my practice, they’re safe and effective – and completely free of dangerous side effects. Just a few of the ones I recommend are:

1.  Rutin – This powerful flavonoid is anti-inflammatory and improves circulation, which can often relieve soreness and swelling as well.  [Figs and organic apples are high in it.  So is buckwheat and gluten free buckwheat flour.  Figs may be the most desirable source and organic apples the easiest to get.]  [Because rutin does cause increased blood flow with a blood thinning effect, ingesting it by itself is likely safe.  But if you are taking a blood thinning drug, the combination may not be safe. If you are in this situation your life may depend or working carefully with your doctor!   For that reason, I don’t think well of those drugs for most of the people who now take them.]

2.  Ginger – Studies show ginger can reduce discomfort, tenderness and irritation in the muscles and joints by as much as 25 percent.1

Ginger contains 12 different compounds that fight excess inflammation.
Some block the enzyme which triggers it. 
Some lower pain-receptor and nerve-ending sensitivity. 
Together they work as well as any over-the-counter remedy you can find.

[You can get ginger supplements.  Used well in foods, peeled and diced ginger can add a lot of flavor and feeling of warmth.

I use a spice bottle capful in chilled water every morning.  It does seem to work.  And I like the feeling of warmth just after I do that.  My blood indicators for heart disease and inflammation also improved since I began doing that!]

Yucca – At one time, there were more than 100 universities and institutions around the world investigating the natural healing properties of yucca. 

3.  Yucca also has protective plant nutrients called saponins, which may elevate the body's production of anti-inflammatory cortisone. 

When you ingest saponins, they seem to block release of toxins from the intestines that inhibit normal formation of cartilage.

Yucca is mostly used in combinations that help arthritic and joint tenderness and discomfort, and for sediment caused by excess inflammation. Adding the yucca plant to your diet will help wash out the harmful poisons that cause aches and irritation.

[Red wine is also high in saponins.  Burgundy, zinfandel, and pinot noir have the most.  Saponins also lower LDL cholesterol. I take so many supplements I don’t think I’ll add yucca. But I do drink those kinds of red wine often.]

4.  Papain – This is a proteolytic enzyme that comes from Carica papaya fruit.   Papain can help you if you suffer from excess inflammation and joint discomfort
It helps increase your body’s own pain thresholdhelps you recover more quickly from injury and reduces circulating free radicals that lead to inflammation.

Papain helps relieve non-inflammatory irritation, too, because it helps remove the cellular waste products that build up in the joints and cause tenderness and discomfort.

[I find I don’t like papaya.  And I’ve heard some people are allergic to it.  If I decided to use it, I’d get it in a supplement I think.  At least when I tried papaya I got no allergic effects.]

B.  My list:

1.  Devil's claw and the 2.  Shea oil in the FlexNow supplement are anti-inflammatories that do not cause stomach bleeding or excessive blood thinning like aspirin.  The makers of FlexNow also claim it boosts cartilage formation.
Shea oil is unusually unlikely to cause any allergic reactions and is used in hypo-allergenic personal products for this reason.  It is also NOT high in omega 6 oils.

3.  Taking 3,000 to 5,000 iu a day of vitamin D3 prevents many of the injuries that would otherwise need pain relief—in one test of athletes who get a lot of injuries it cut the amount of injuries per season in HALF!;

And, taking that much vitamin D3 speeds healing of any injuries that you do get.  

(Sometimes taking 5,000 iu a day extra at first or for injuries taking extra time to heal can help.)  AND, a recent study also found that men who take that much vitamin D3 STOP getting many chronic pains entirely.

4.   Turmeric and the Curcumin in it are cousins of ginger AND have similar anti-inflammatory and pain relieving effects.  

(Since they also help prevent cancer and Alzheimer's disease, along with many others, we strongly recommend almost everyone one take these and use turmeric in some of their food.  For those purposes they work MUCH better if you take or eat them with black pepper.)

Since I initially wrote this, I’ve seen research that turmeric and curcumin with black pepper may be the most effective anti-inflammatory in this list!

C.  Following the low inflammation lifestyle in all its parts tends to prevent some damage from high chronic inflammation, speed inflammation reversal from real injuries, and prevent some pains.

For example, high chronic inflammation CAUSES osteoarthritis.  So following this lifestyle not only makes any osteoarthritis you have hurt less, it causes you to have LESS osteoarthritis to begin with!

(Eat virtually no grains; rarely if ever eat animal fats or proteins from animals fed grain instead of their natural diet; avoid using all high omega 6 cooking oils such as soy, corn, canola, and safflower oils; use extra virgin olive oil instead. AND take omega 3 oils supplements and DHA supplements and eat low mercury fish high in omega 3 oils and only wild caught fish.  This gives you a very anti-inflammatory intake and your omega 6 and omega 3 oils will be in balance. 

People who do none of these things take in so much more omega 6 oils than omega 3 oils, they have sky high chronic inflammation.  That not only makes them get more pain, it tends to cause osteoarthritis, Alzheimer’s disease; heart disease; and many cancers!)

D.  For muscle soreness from exercise there are several other remedies that work. Some of them also speed healing.

1.  50 to 60 minutes of whole body massage including careful but direct massage of the area that is sore DOES lower soreness pain because it improves your general circulation and circulation to the sore area so much, it speeds healing and removes damaged cells and inflammatory compounds!

Not everyone can access this one.  But if you can, it is proven to work!  

Often you can massage the sore area yourself.  You can find the most sore area and massage it hard enough to increase its circulation and relax it a bit and do it without making it hurt too much by doing it.  Even 30 seconds of this one time can help.

2.  Taking the amino acid citrulline was found to lower soreness from exercise.  It also works with arginine if you take that, to cause growth hormone release and lower blood pressure when it's high.  It's a bit expensive and apparently it works best to take two or three 500 mg capsules twice a day.

3.  Taking the glycemic LOWERING sugar ribose before exercise may help you perform better by helping your mitochondria extract energy from ATP.  And, taking it both before and after exercise hard enough to cause soreness was found to reduce the soreness.

4.  Slow deep breathing through the nose before exercise and between sets and when you can at all DURING the exercise boosts circulation and its effectiveness enough to lower muscle soreness I just found out.

5.  Use topical capsaicin to cause the area to become slightly but temporarily more sore and feeling hot.  Two things then happen.  Your body works to reverse this excess and overshoots a bit.  THEN, on top of that, the capsaicin turns off some of your nerve's pain transmission too!

(You have to be SO careful NOT to get the capsaicin cream in your eyes or on other parts of you that aren't sore, that in my own case, I reserve this for soreness bad enough to keep me from sleeping well. And, I use the bottom of an empty supplement container or a Q-tip to apply it.  Then I wash my hands too very thoroughly just in case!)

Despite its limitations, when I've needed it, this method has helped me get pain relief WITHOUT taking OTC pain relievers!

6.  Recent research also has found that taking the extract of Montmorency cherries cuts inflammation as well as turmeric or ginger or better in some cases. 

One study found it even helped prevent injuries and speed the healing of injuries. 

Another study found taking it both mornings and just before bedtime caused people with severe insomnia to average over an hour more sleep each night!

Other cherry extracts have similar effects but I’ve not seen research showing they are as strong.  Currently I’ve not been able to get the extract of Montmorency cherries and take one of the other since I have access to it at my local Whole Foods.

7.  Oxytocin is the feel good hormone that’s released when you give or receive affection and hugs.  It’s also released during love making and when you climax.  You can even release it when you self pleasure -- particularly nipple stimulation.

You can also get it as a nasal spray.

When it’s high you can often feel unusually good -- even blissful in some cases.

If it’s high you can feel so good it overrides any minor pains.  But recent research also found that increasing oxytocin significantly speeds the healing of injuries too!

By using these methods you can make times when you would otherwise want an OTC pain remedy MUCH less frequent. 

And, I’ve found even if you have them on hand, you are rarely tempted to use them!  

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