Pain is one of the most subjective physical experiences we go through. Like the asparagus pee smell or soap-flavoured coriander—you have to experience it to understand it.
Pain falls into three broad categories: inflammatory pain (nociceptive), nerve pain and nociplastic pain arising from altered pain perception.
Science is far from fully understanding the different pain types that often occur simultaneously. This is why pain management can feel like stumbling in a dark tunnel, lighting a match as you go.
Today, we dive deep into inflammatory pain, specifically natural remedies for abnormal inflammation.
If you have arthritis, joint pain, or exercise-induced muscle damage, then you’re very familiar with inflammatory pain.
Inflammation is indispensable. It’s part of the communication system that tells your brain something’s wrong, and repairs need to happen in the body right away. That said, chronic or abnormal inflammation can cause prolonged pain.
Current pharmaceutical treatments of inflammation, such as ibuprofen (NSAIDs) or paracetamol, also cause negative, long-term side effects to the liver, gut and kidney.
In light of that, let’s break down:
- Natural anti-inflammatory ingredients that are easily accessible
- How astaxanthin tops the anti-inflammatory hierarchy
- Tips on making the best of natural pain relievers
1. Astaxanthin Covers All the Health Bases
Astaxanthin is the MVP of antioxidants. It’s a super-antioxidant that has one of the strongest antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects known.
To put it into perspective, astaxanthin’s antioxidant activity is:
- 100 times more effective than α-tocopherol (vitamin E).
- 65 times more powerful than vitamin C.
- 54 times more potent than β-carotene (beta carotene).
- 10 times stronger than β-carotene, canthaxanthin, zeaxanthin and lutein.
Astaxanthin is perfect for long-term supplementation since it takes time to build up in target areas and work its magic—modulating inflammatory enzymes, chemicals and genes.
What does regular intake of astaxanthin for over 4 weeks do to your body?
For Athletes and Fitness Enthusiasts
Athletes supplementing astaxanthin before exercise benefit from:
- Post-workout reduction in oxidative stress (inflammation), which causes delayed onset muscle soreness.
- Reduced lactic acid accumulation after running.
- Improved muscle strength and endurance.
For Inflammatory Pain Warriors
People suffering from joint pain caused by gout arthritis or osteoarthritis can expect therapeutic effects from astaxanthin, such as:
- Disappearance of abnormal bone growths (bone spurs).
- Softening of calcified soft tissue around joints.
- Joint pain relief through its anti-inflammatory action.
- Reduced cartilage degradation.
For Those Seeking Healthier Bodies
Beyond joint and muscle pain relief, astaxanthin alleviates many symptoms of inflammatory illness in the body.
Regular supplementation of astaxanthin:
- Improves visual acuity and reduces eye tiredness, dryness, soreness and blurred vision.
- Brings back skin elasticity and moisture while reducing wrinkles.
- Blocks UV rays from damaging the skin by accumulating in the top layers.
- Protects the brain from inflammatory neurodegenerative diseases since it can cross the blood-brain barrier.
- Improves immune system response by activating white blood cells.
- Reduces visceral fat deposits and improves metabolism to help fight conditions such as diabetes and obesity.
As with many nutraceuticals, their source can make or break the efficacy of the dietary supplement.
Our organic, natural astaxanthin comes from micro-algae, lab-grown with baby-safe, spring water.
Its extraction process, using supercritical CO2 (fluid carbon dioxide) as a solvent, ensures there’s no solvent residue.
- Is non-toxic.
- Has a neutral environmental footprint.
- Leaves no residual solvents.
Synthetic astaxanthin has 20 times lower antioxidant capacity than its natural counterpart and, to date, hasn’t been approved for human consumption.
2. Curcumin Does It All
From curries to herbal tea to face masks, turmeric has been a favourite in many cultures for thousands of years, but its active ingredients were only scientifically identified after the 1950s.
Curcumin has an impressive repertoire of effects on the body as it:
- Fights bacteria and fungal microbes.
- Lowers cholesterol.
- Blocks cancer cell growth.
- Triggers cancer cell death.
- Improves cognitive function.
- Is anti-inflammatory.
Curcumin’s anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties are the sources of its pain relief action.
One clinical trial found that curcumin works as well as NSAIDs in relieving pain from arthritis without causing the stomach problems that those pharmaceutical drugs are known for.
Supplements typically contain higher curcumin content than the turmeric root itself.
If you wish to add curcumin to your roster of anti-inflammatory ingredients, consider adding freshly grated or powdered turmeric to milk, teas and our heavy metal detox smoothie.
3. Ginger Gets to the Root of Pain
From gut balancing ginger shots to ginger ale and Moscow Mules on nights out, we’ve all had a drink with ginger in it. Ginger root is also a staple in Middle Eastern and Asian cuisines.
Gingerol and other bioactive chemical compounds in ginger that give it its pungent flavour are responsible for its anti-inflammatory action.
Did you know ginger is a modest inflammatory pain reliever that mimics the action of NSAIDs like ibuprofen but with safer long-term use?
Studies show that ginger limits the action of the hormones and chemicals that trigger inflammation in the body. It’s best suited to long-term use because its effect sets in slowly.
Further trials used ginger supplementation for a faster rebound of muscle strength following muscle soreness caused by high-intensity resistance exercise.
A controlled trial involving patients with arthritis in the knee showed ginger’s moderate effect on pain reduction in the area while standing and walking.
How should you take ginger to maximise its therapeutic effects?
The more processed the ginger root is, the less potent its effect. Avoid sweetened ginger drinks with high sugar calories and little ginger content.
Opt instead for fresh ginger, grated into a cup of tea. Our detoxifying cilantro and chlorella smoothie is a great way to add ginger to your diet.
4. Capsaicin Fights Fire with Fire
Capsaicin is the ingredient that makes chilli either hellishly fiery or excitingly flavourful—depending on how much of a thrill seeker you are.
Grown men have wept from the pain of eating chilli, and it’s this same painful sensation that’s at the heart of capsaicin’s pain relief mechanism.
At first, capsaicin triggers the heat sensors in the body, making the brain think there’s danger. The brain sends a jolt of pain to the exposed area, creating that signature burning sensation you experience from chilli.
With continued exposure, capsaicin depletes the chemical (substance P), which transmits and controls pain messages to the brain and prevents its reaccumulation.
Capsaicin numbs the pain.
In practice, the application of capsaicin reduces the ability of nerve cells to transmit pain messages to the brain. It also blocks the trigger of localised inflammation, such as swelling, tenderness or pain.
Currently, there are topical capsaicin creams that give temporary relief from:
- Minor aches and joint pain associated with arthritis.
- Musculoskeletal pain from conditions such as chronic fatigue syndrome.
- Psoriasis pain.
- Chronic pain associated with nerve damage from a shingles infection.
- Cluster headaches.
- Painful mouth swelling caused by chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
Get Pain Relief Naturally
Natural pain relievers like astaxanthin, curcumin and ginger do more than ease pain. They improve your quality of life by tackling inflammation throughout your body. Remember to always consult your doctor before introducing new treatments.
Improve your life today with our organic, vegan, non-GMO, lab-tested astaxanthin supplements and see the results yourself.
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