Americans must be hurting, because there are literally rows and rows of anti-inflammatory medications being sold over the counter in our pharmacies.
And guess what? They’re some of the most profitable drugs in the history of Big Pharma.
Two of the biggest sellers are nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen (brands include Motrin, Advil), and acetaminophen (Tylenol).
There’s no question that for acute sprains, strains, and other injuries, an NSAID can relieve pain quickly.
What is less well-known is that daily doses of NSAID medications actually inhibit healing.
NSAIDs work by poisoning the enzyme cyclooxygenase, which is necessary to convert arachidonic acid to prostaglandins — lipid compounds that mediate blood flow, immune system activation, and cellular repair mechanisms.
These same prostaglandins also regulate inflammatory markers.
Many doctors will tell you that taking ibuprofen decreases the inflammatory response to an injured part of the body. They are correct.
The problem is that the inflammatory response is necessary to stimulate cellular repair mechanisms. Inhibiting this response can slow the healing process.
That’s exactly what happens when a person takes NSAIDs for a long period of time.
For example, if a person suffers a bone fracture, the standard of care is to prescribe an NSAID to reduce inflammation.
But researchers have discovered that NSAIDs inhibit bone healing in a number of different ways, including decreasing mineral content and reducing remodeling, a process by which old and injured bone is removed and new bone tissue is formed.
In addition, NSAIDs cause kidney problems. In fact, they are one of the most common causes of kidney failure and can worsen chronic kidney disease. NSAIDs have been shown to decrease the blood flow to the kidneys by inhibiting certain prostaglandins that mediate blood flow.
If you have kidney disease, you should not use any form of NSAID.
A better way to help the body repair injury is to supply it with the basic nutrients it needs to heal.
The number one nutrient for healing is vitamin C, which is required to form the collagen cross-links that hold body tissues together. We simply can’t live without it.
But because our bodies do not produce vitamin C, we must get it, in adequate amounts, in our diets.
After checking the blood levels of thousands of patients, I can say with certainty that vitamin C deficiency is not a thing of the past — it is still common in the modern world.
The best way to get vitamin C is by eating whole fruits and vegetables. Unfortunately, in our toxic world I think we can all benefit from supplementing with vitamin C.
I suggest taking 3,000 to 5,000 mg per day. The only side effect of vitamin C is loose stools. If you get them, just lower your dose.
After an injury or during a time of excess stress on the body, including illness, it’s important to take higher doses of vitamin C.
In addition, systemic enzymes can provide pain relief without decreasing the body’s ability to heal from injury. They are best taken on an empty stomach when used for this purpose.
There are other natural substances that can help the body heal from an injury. These include magnesium, B vitamins, zinc, and copper.
A healthcare provider skilled in the use of natural therapies can help get you what you need.
Maintaining optimal hydration is also essential to helping the body heal from injury.
The human body is a remarkable creation. If we give it what it needs, the body can handle the job of healing without drugs.
© 2023 NewsmaxHealth. All rights reserved.