One of the things I like about being a professional licensed massage therapists is that no matter the medical perspective a person takes when it comes to their well-being, everyone agrees massage not only feels good… it’s good for us. I like that massage therapy is one of the points in the vast spectrum of medical choices where everyone agrees… natural remedies versus pharmaceuticals is, of course, not.
I think there are some phenomenal pharmaceutical breakthroughs out there that are life changing and life saving… and I think the drugs we have available to us are nothing short of miraculous. Maybe it’s my degree in chemistry that helps this field seem fascinating t0 me. Are prescriptions too easy to come by… written to easily and too often… yes! AND… please take into account the and… there are some truly amazing drugs out there that have saved my life and the lives of my loved ones.
At the same time, I think there are natural tools available to us that are as overlooked as pharmaceuticals are overused. I was thrilled to find an article making use of recent research into the pain fighting qualities of cherries. Drinking cherry juice has been one of those anecdotal tips offered up to chronic pain suffers in my massage circles. It’s pretty dang cool to hear Michigan State took a look into it and came to the conclusion that cherries really can relieve pain more than over-the-counter pain relievers like aspirin.
Massage Link: Cherries Better Than Aspirin for Pain?
According to research done at Michigan State University the anthocyanins that make cherries red could also help relieve pain more effectively than aspirin. The study found that anthocyanins were potent antioxidants that could prevent oxidative damage and also inhibited enzymes called cyclooxygenase-1 and -2 (Cox 1 and 2), which is similar in the way anti- inflammatory drugs seek to reduce pain. The study appeared in the Journal of Natural Products published by the American Chemical Society.
Lead researcher Muralee G. Nair, Ph.D., Professor at Michigan State University College of Agriculture & Natural Resources, noted about this cherry effect “It is as good as ibuprofen and some of the nonsteriodal anti-inflammatory drugs.” Nair said that his lab results indicate that consuming 20 tart cherries could provide anti-inflammatory benefits.
Finding a natural way to reduce pain is important, given the serious side effects from common pain relievers called NSAIDs, examples of which include Advil, Motrin, Aleve and aspirin.
Got any tips on how to make use of Mother Nature’s medical offerings? I want to hear about them in the comments section below: