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Natural Anti-inflammatories

Updated on October 13, 2006

Fight Inflammation

Inflammation is a key cause for pain during physical activities. In sports, it becomes a major obstacle to one's ability to perform at his/her best. In addition, and perhaps more importantly, inflammation has been linked to a very large number of illnesses, including cancer. Therefore, reducing inflammation is key to reducing pain and improving one's health.

Fortunately, there many ways to keep inflammation in check. In addition to prescription medications like Vioxx, etc. which include Cox-2 inhibitors, there are a large number of over the counter medications and supplements such as aspirin and ibuprofin which work very well. However, like any medication, they all have some sort of side effects like stomach and liver problems. A safer alternative to the synthetic medications may be the use of certain natural herbs. They work much gentler on the body, so they take longer to take effect.

Here are some herbal anti-inflammatories that have been used over generations:

ARNICA Used in cream form to prevent bruising and swelling of joints due to injuries.

BOSWELLIATaken orally to help reduce inflammation of joint tissue and treat arthritis.

MARSHMALLOW ROOT Helps soothe irritated membranes of mouth and throat.

GRAPE SEED Works well for swollen ankles due to circulatory difficulties an blocks histamine associated with allergic reaction.

DEVIL'S CLAW Works well for arthritis pain.

CALENDULA Used as a cream it is good for skin damage, insect bites and minor scrapes.

WILLOW BARK It includes the same component, salicylic acid, as aspirin. However, does not upset the stomach. Good for arthritis.

GINGER An effective treatment for bursitis and arthritis.

TURMERIC It is used for arthritis, bursitis and tendinitis.

NOTE: One should always check with his/her medical practitioner for any contridicting health conditions. Many of the above are potent treatments and should be used as directed for specific indications:


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    • profile image

      lady_assassin 8 years ago

      i used prednisone for my tubercolosis. it is prescribed by my doctor to me from for me it is effective because i take it properly.

    • Marisa Wright profile image

      Kate Swanson 8 years ago from Sydney

      I'm wondering if James's body is trying to tell him something. Perhaps it's time to switch to another sport. We all get old!

    • vic profile image

      vic 8 years ago

      I am not familiar with anti-inflammatory properties of Turmeric. It is a very potent anti-oxidant. MSM is a very effective anti-inflammatory and works well on the joints too. It has shown to be non-toxic.

    • profile image

      James 8 years ago

      I train hard in Jiu-Jitsu 4 times a week. I'm 43 years old and the pain in all different areas is constant. Every month I'll take about a week off from all physical activity to give my body a well deserved break. However, can anyone tell me what I can be taking during training to reduce inflamation. I've been taking Turmeric, but not sure if it's really doing the job right now. Has anyone tried Boswellia? Any suggestions? Thank you.

    • profile image

      Jean 8 years ago

      I have fibromyalgia, arthritis, diabetes, GERD, migraine, to name the worst afflictions. I was on Lodine, a Rx anti-inflammatory, and decided to try natural anti-inflammatories. On the 7th day of Lodine, I took a dose of natural anti-inflammatory from an all natural company suggested by my chiropractor. I broke out in terrible hives, hospitalized for 4 days. It nearly went into Stevens-Johnson Syndrome. I cannot use ANY anti-inflammatories now, including anything natural without an outbreak of hives.

      I was trying a natural colon cleanse and have had hives for 3 weeks. It did not occur to me that any of the ingredients might be anti-inflammatory. I saw the doctor today. I'm miserable.

      Is there anything I can take for pain, hives etc. without any anti-inflammatories at all? And, how do I get rid of inflammation from the arthritis and pain of fibromyalgia?

    • vic profile image

      vic 9 years ago

      I am sorry to hear that you are suffering from AS. I don't know what kind of anti-inflammatories you have taken, but here are some to consider:

      MSM (OTC) is an excellent and safe anti-inflammatory. I take 3 grams per day.

      Prednisone (RX) is also an excellent anti-inflammatory. Talk to your doctor.

      TNF (RX) is a good anti-inflammatory and pain reducing medication. Talk to your doctor.

      Also, some believe that a bacteria in the gut may be responsible for some of the inflammatory pain. Starving the bacteria by reducing starch in ones diet has shown to be effective.

      Absolutely NO SMOKING.

      I wish you good health.

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      Phil Dearing 9 years ago

      I have Ankylosing spondylitis, and have had absolutely no results with any of the aniinflammatory medications. So ive stopped all of them at the momment. Can you suggest anything for the inflamation and the pain? Ive been in cronic pain for over a year and a half, and Im kinda desperate.

    • Marisa Wright profile image

      Kate Swanson 10 years ago from Sydney

      I hadn't heard of arnica as an anti-inflammatory, but it's absolutely fantastic for bruising or anything where blood is congested under the skin.

      Billybod, I've heard people say good things about fish oil too.

    • profile image

      billybob 10 years ago

      Fish oils the Omega's are very good antiinflamatories, they help beleive me

    • profile image

      ted frost 10 years ago

      i take celedrin soft gells twice a day for arthritis pain.

    • profile image

      Max Peykar 10 years ago

      Thanks for the info. As you mentioned I used to take aspirin, but my stomach does not allow any more.

    • vic profile image

      vic 11 years ago

      Advil, hot compresses, compression stockings and elevating your legs are good treatments. Any type of natural anti-inflammatory supplement should do good. Arnica, ginger and turmeric are safe natural anti-inflammatories. Methylsulphonylmethane (MSM) has also been reported to be a very effective natural anti-inflammatory agent. I take 3 grams of MSM per day. You should also make sure that potential blood clotting is prevented.

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      Melisa 11 years ago

      I have phlebitis. My doctor put my on Advil and hot compresses for the inflammation. It has been almost 2 mo. with very little results. I was wondering what I could use that is all natural that will hepl me?

    • finfer_ama profile image

      finfer_ama 11 years ago from bangkok

      this is really helping. thanks