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Top 5 Foods That Relieve Pain and Inflammation

What if you could eat a tasty snack instead of taking a pill to relieve achy joints?

Inflammation plays a fairly significant role in many different health issues, particularly those that end in “itis,” which literally means inflammation.

While pain pills can help reduce suffering, they can be addictive, often producing unwanted side effects, and, typically fail to eliminate the root cause of the pain.

The good news is that just as what you eat can contribute to your pain, certain foods have the ability to relieve pain that’s accompanied by inflammation. They have the ability to block pain signals, fight inflammation, and even heal underlying disease.

The average American’s diet is filled with food that worsens inflammation, including fast food and processed foods which tend to contain omega-6 fatty acids.

By avoiding those unhealthy foods, and adding these 5 foods to your diet, odds are you’ll start enjoying relief soon.

1. Cherries

Cherries are not only juicy and delicious, they contain compounds known as anthocyanins – the substance responsible for their rich ruby color.

These powerful antioxidants offer a double whammy when it comes to relieving pain. They block inflammation and inhibit pain enzymes similar to the way nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories and aspirin work.

In fact, one study found that those who ate a bowl of cherries in the morning were able to reduce a major marker of inflammation by 25 percent.

Another study discovered runners who drank 12 ounces of tart cherry juice twice a day for seven days before a run, endured less muscle pain compared to those who did not.

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2. Hot Peppers

Hot peppers, like cayenne peppers, contain a substance called capsaicin.  The more capsaicin, the hotter the pepper.

Capsaicin has been found to trigger the release of endorphins.

You’ve probably heard endorphins referred to as “happy hormones” – and, no wonder, they not only make you feel good, but they help to lessen many forms of chronic pain!

Capsaicin releases a chemical known as “substance P,’ which is also released when the body sustains an injury. It signals the nervous system that you’ve been injured, causing an initial burning sensation followed by a lessening of pain in the area after time.

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Add hot peppers to your meals more often, or you can also add a half teaspoon of ground cayenne pepper to a glass of water, drinking a glass a day.

3. Garlic

Garlic may leave you with some slightly funky breath, but it makes meals taste amazing, and it offers anti- inflammatory properties too.

It also has antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal properties, making it a popular food since ancient times for treating all sorts of ailments.

Plus, its powerful antioxidant compounds are known to give the immune system a boost if you’re suffering from a chronic condition.

To get the most anti-inflammatory benefits, eat it raw rather than cooked. You can add some chopped or minced garlic to a salad, homemade salsa or other dips for a healthy, pain fighting kick!

4. Coldwater Fish

Coldwater fish like wild-caught salmon, sardines and herring that are high in omega-3s and low in mercury are known to be especially effective for battling back pain.

Omega-3s are known to help improve blood flow and decrease inflammation in the nerves and blood vessels.

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5. Ginger root

This tasty herb serves as a natural anti-inflammatory in the body due to its gingerol content, along with other antioxidants.

It’s been used as part of traditional Ayurvedic remedies since ancient times for decreasing inflammation.

Its pain-relieving effects can be enjoyed whether it’s eaten raw or heated.

Studies have found that ginger root works as well as, and even better, than ibuprofen!

One of the easiest ways to get ginger’s incredible benefits is to enjoy it fresh as a tea.  Just slice up four or five pieces of the fresh root and steep in boiling water for 5 to 10 minutes.

If you don’t have access to hot water, you can even chew on a piece of raw ginger after peeling it for pain relief.

Yours in Health,

Danette

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