Anti-Inflammatory Herbs

November 2, 2013 by | Be the first to comment »

Inflammation occurs when the body’s immune system is under attack and is most obvious when it occurs with an injury

However, inflammation also occurs internally. Medical conditions such as arthritis, bronchitis and cystitis all count inflammation among their symptoms. Doctors often prescribe drugs like prednisone to alleviate these symptoms, but over the counter versions like ibuprofen exist too.

Prescription and over the counter remedies are inexpensive, but prolonged use can increase the risk for cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, and other issues.

Whenever possible, safer, natural alternatives are preferred. Many herbs act as anti-inflammatories, and most of these have no harmful side effects. Whether you need an anti-inflammatory on a daily basis or only occasionally, choosing a natural herb is a healthy way to experience relief without exposing yourself to risk of harmful side effects.

Turmeric

Turmeric is easily recognized by its yellow coloring. Taking between 400 and 600 milligrams daily can be an effective for a variety of inflammatory conditions. Turmeric extract is most often taken in capsule form, which can be found at most health food stores. However, turmeric is not recommended for those suffering from a dysfunctional bile duct or who have gallstones. In general, it takes about two months of regular use to begin feeling the full effect of the turmeric, so don’t expect immediate relief.

Aloe Vera

Long recognized as a particularly soothing treatment for skin conditions such as rashes and sunburn, aloe vera works equally well when ingested. People with ulcers or gastroparesis often report that it treats inflammation along their digestive tract, calming symptoms and bringing relief.

Ginger

Ginger can be used in many forms; fresh ginger, available in the produce section of most grocery stores can be grated or chopped and added to a variety of dishes. Those who prefer a little less hands on preparation can experience the same anti inflammatory benefits by taking it in capsule form. Between 500 and 1,000 milligrams daily is enough to produce results, but again, about two months of regular use is required for full effectiveness.

Cinnamon

Studies have shown that cinnamon reduces inflammation, has antioxidant effects, and even fights bacteria. Recommend dosage is ½ to 1 teaspoon (200—400 milligrams) per day, but very high doses may be toxic—especially for those with liver problems, cancer, or hormonal imbalances. Cinnamon is available in both capsule form and as a spice; the latter being the most common and easiest way to use it.

Boswellia

Boswellia has been used to treat many forms of inflammation, but recent studies have indicated that it can also prevent the production of enzymes that contribute to serious conditions like Chron’s disease and bronchial asthma. Capsules containing boswellia are widely available, but it’s important to follow dosage instructions carefully to avoid any chance of toxicity.

Chamomile

This herb has been recognized for its extraordinary healing properties since the ancient Greek and Roman civilizations. In addition to its anti-inflammatory properties, it is also a mild sedative, a fever reducer, and a treatment for nausea. Chamomile is frequently used to treat ulcerative colitis and gastritis when ingested. When it’s used as a nasal wash, it can reduce mucous tissue inflammations. Simply drinking chamomile tea is a great way to achieve this amazing herb’s beneficial effects.

Neem

Anyone regularly suffering from joint pain and achy muscles will find value in neem oil. This extract from a tree that is common in India treats a variety of conditions both internal and external. It’s a frequent additive to soaps and skin creams since it can help with conditions like psoriasis and eczema. However, it can also be taken internally, which is when its anti inflammatory properties can really get to work on joints and muscles.

Herbal remedies are an ideal way to treat inflammation without harmful side effects that come with over the counter or prescription drugs, and are easy to find in most stores, or even grown in your own garden.

Melanie Swick (a.k.a. Survival Chick) grew up wanting to be a rocket scientist, but when she realized she that required way too much math, she took to her second dream—spending time in the wilderness. Today, when she's not hiking, camping, or hunting, she's blogging about it. You can connect with Melanie on Facebook.

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