We know that a balanced diet can reduce symptoms of chronic pain disorder, but why? Find out.
Chronic pain is uncomfortable to experience for sufferers, typically involving extreme pain that has lasted for longer than 12 weeks. Some time ago, we produced a blog post that briefly discussed how having a healthy, balanced diet can help to subside pain and combat symptoms of chronic pain disorder. In this blog post, we delve a little deeper to better understand exactly how certain foods can help as well as revealing which foods are beneficial and which should be avoided at all costs.
Although there are no studies that actually show proof of food being used to relieve pain, maintaining a healthy diet is something that’s recommended to everyone, especially those who suffer from chronic pain.
Foods To Help Pain
Ginger – Mostly recommended for easing nausea, ginger contains specific compounds that are notorious for fighting inflammation, which is a common cause of pain.
Olive Oil – Researchers believe that those who eat a traditional Mediterranean diet rich in olive oil have fewer health conditions related to inflammation. In fact, experts have found that olive oil contains compounds that are similar to ibuprofen, making it a great addition to your daily diet if you suffer from chronic pain.
Salmon – Rich in omega 3, salmon is great for reducing inflammation, full of healthy fats and calcitonin, something shown in clinical studies to protect against osteoarthritis pain.
Turmeric – Also known as curcumin, turmeric is a spice that can be added to curry and other Indian foods. In studies, researchers have found that turmeric is great for its anti-inflammatory benefits and can be eaten to ease rheumatoid arthritis pain.
Red Grapes – Red grapes contain resveratrol, a chemical compound also found in peanuts and berries, which is thought to have anti-inflammatory benefits. Resveratrol has been found to stop cells in the body from responding to inflammation, helping to fight and reduce pain. In addition, researchers have found that the combination of resveratrol and turmeric holds a whole host of benefits to those suffering from chronic pain disorder.
Thyme – Commonly used in cooking to enhance flavour, thyme is a herb that is said to contain certain compounds that interfere with how pain is perceived. In the lab, thyme proved to be successful as a method to improve inflammation and pain perception in mice.
Foods To Avoid
Sugar – If insulin levels increase, pain will typically worsen. To avoid this, it’s advised to limit sugar intake. So, think about swapping your sugar for sweeteners or your fruit juice for fresh whole fruits.
Caffeine – Fibromyalgia is a chronic pain condition that is often linked to lack of sleep and extreme fatigue. Due to this, sufferers are tempted to turn to caffeine for a boost of energy, which can do more harm than good; caffeine shouldn’t be used as a substitute for sleep and is more likely to actually keep you awake.
Pasteurised Dairy – Most chronic pain sufferers find it difficult to digest dairy products, such as milk, which can result in abdominal pain, gas, or diarrhoea.
Junk Food – As always, it’s advised that junk food such as chocolate and crisps should be avoided; weight gain can put a strain on your joints and muscles and as a result can increase pain and worsen symptoms. In addition, junk food is said to disrupt sleep and compromising your immune system.
All in all, we would always recommend maintaining a healthy, balanced diet to improve your overall health and wellbeing which can also go towards relieving symptoms of chronic pain disorder. As well as taking our advice on board, we would always recommend that you liaise with your doctor to better understand how your diet could be improved to adhere your specific case.
We do not endorse any research, studies or sources mentioned within our blogs and comments. Furthermore, we do not endorse any medical advice provided, and would strongly recommend anyone seeking medical advice to contact their local healthcare provider.