Holistic ways to beat joint pain
As a nurse, you want to feel your best so that you can devote your working days to taking care of your patients — not yourself. If the thought of taking prescribed pain medication for minor joint pain doesn’t appeal to you, consider looking into holistic therapies.
There are natural methods for nurses to combat pain with few side effects. Many of these therapies have the added benefit of contributing to your overall well-being. Here are five holistic therapies you may want to explore:
Food, Supplements, Herbs
Good nutrition is actually the simplest of all holistic therapies. You know that if you eat poorly, you won’t feel well and your joints will likely suffer. One general rule of thumb when you have joint pain is to avoid foods that are highly acidic, because they throw your body’s pH level off balance which exacerbates joint pain. Highly acidic foods that you should avoid or cut down on include red meat, bread, sugar, pastries, pickles, fruit juice, beer, and wine. Instead, focus on eating foods rich in vitamins B, C, D, and E. These vitamins help to prevent joint wear and tear and help to reduce joint inflammation.
When you’re cooking, use ginger, turmeric, garlic and cayenne pepper liberally. Ginger and turmeric are natural anti-inflammatories, and garlic and cayenne are excellent circulation stimulants that help flush away toxins that are built up in your joints. If your hospital cafeteria food seems to be a bit lacking in most of these spices, you can purchase them in capsule or tincture forms so you can take them with you.
MSM (methylsulfonylmethane) is a sulphur that’s found naturally in many foods and is also a building block of cartilage. Because cartilage is a key component of joints, many individuals find that taking MSM and Glucosamine (a substance that’s naturally produced in the body) supplements can help reduce joint degeneration, alleviate joint pain and repair damaged cartilage. Move Free® Advanced is one over the counter supplement that combines MSM and Glucosamine with antioxidant herbs like Chinese Scullcap root and Black Catechu bark.
Cynthia Dusseault is a professional freelance writer with both a health and an education background. A former medical radiation technologist and elementary school teacher, she realized that no matter what she did, she was drawn to any task that involved writing, so she decided, over a decade ago, to write full-time. Since then, she has written for a variety of magazines and websites including Nursing PRN, National Review of Medicine, University Affairs, Your Health, Education Leaders Today, Today's Parent, Children's Playmate, WeightWatchers.ca and many more.
She has written about topics such as asthma, genital herpes, circumcision, teleradiology, body art, learning disabilities and exercise trends, and she absolutely adores the fact that writing—particularly doing the research for the articles she writes—makes her a lifelong learner.
By Cynthia Dusseault