I don’t know why, really, but I hate taking pills, which is why I first started looking for foods that relieve pain. If there’s a natural way to cure what ails me, I’m liable to try it, and that includes managing pain. I’ve read up on all sorts of foods that ease pain, and I’ve even tried most of them… and believe it or not, they work! What are these magical pain-fighting foods, and how do they work? Read on! Here are 8 foods that relieve pain.
For more than 2,000 years, the medicinal effects of ginger have been celebrated (ask any woman who’s ever suffered from morning sickness about ginger ale)… but did you know that among its magical properties, ginger is also one of the foods that relieve pain? It has strong anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties, to the point that it’s just as effective at treating pain as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. That’s amazing — using a food to relieve pain means no pills, no side effects!
This spice, commonly used in South Asian cuisine, is quite the little pain reliever, too. Like ginger, it has marvelous anti-inflammatory and analgesic qualities, as well as being tasty. And like ginger, taking 1,000 milligrams of turmeric in pill form (where it’s commonly combined with a form of pepper to aid absorption) is just as effective as taking ibuprofen, especially for joint pain.
3. Red Grapes
I find this ironic, that red grapes, one of the foods that relieve pain, is also the flavor of some children’s pain relievers. Red grapes are rich in resveratrol, a compound that blocks the enzymes that contribute to tissue degeneration, including the kind of cartilage damage that causes back pain. Next time pop some grapes instead of a painkiller!
If you suffer from chronic pain, then you might want to consider adding some form of soy to your diet, since it’s another of the foods that relieve pain. According to research done at Oklahoma State University, consuming some form of soy protein every day (about 40 grams of it), rich in isoflavones, can reduce chronic pain in as little as 2 to 3 weeks. Edamame is a great source of soy protein, as is soy milk or tofu.
The same compound that gives cherries their gorgeous hue — anthocyanins — is a powerful anti-inflammatory agent. Simply eating a couple handfuls of cherries each day (or drinking tart cherry juice) is enough to reduce inflammation and related pain. Red berries, like raspberries and strawberries, are other sources, though they’re not as potent.
That daily cup of joe is looking better and better after a series of studies have confirmed what fans have known for centuries — those beans are beneficial! I’ve often wondered why my migraine medication contains caffeine, and now I know — it helps my body absorb pain medication, but it also has analgesic properties of its own, especially for muscle pain. Drink up, up to two cups a day!
7. Olive Oil
I was truly surprised when I read an article in the Huffington Post that olive oil is another of the foods that relieve pain. Who knew? Apparently, people in the Mediterranean countries knew. Extra Virgin Olive Oil contains an antioxidant called oleocanthal, which operates a lot like ibuprofen in relieving pain. Amazing, isn’t it?
You know what I love about these foods that relieve pain? I already eat and enjoy so many of them! Which of these pain-relieving foods surprised you, and which did you already know about? Or is there another type of food than relieves pain I haven’t heard of yet? Do tell!