From ginger root to CBD oil to glucosamine, today we are talking about the 10 best natural anti-inflammatory herbs and supplements out there.
Each one of the supplements you’ll see below has research backing their ability to fight inflammation and help with pain.
By changing your diet and adding the right supplements to it, you can make a big improvement in finding the pain relief you’re looking for. So let’s not waste any more time and find out which supplements are best for pain and inflammation relief.
Supplements Risks and Safety
Because herbal supplements and remedies are not regulated by the FDA, it’s important that you thoroughly research any product before using it.
We purposely chose herbal remedies that are touted for their safety alongside their benefits, but there can still be risks. As well, it’s important to know the source of your supplement and only buy from companies with trusted reputations.
Known for its golden yellow color and numerous health benefits, turmeric main ingredient curcumin is rich with anti-inflammatory benefits and delivers a great source of antioxidants.
Curcumin can block NF-KB molecules that turn on inflammation in cells when it enters them.
While studies show that 1 gram of curcumin per day can help with health in numerous ways, turmeric only contains about 2% making it nearly impossible to get the recommended dosage from it.
Fortunately, you can easily find curcumin supplements to take advantage of all the benefits. As well, make sure you pair it will black pepper which can greatly improve curcumin’s absorption into the bloodstream.
Turmeric does not cause notable side effects in most people, though nausea, diarrhea, upset stomach, and dizziness have been reported.
CBD oils and other CBD products have taken over the natural health market in the last few years with their ability to help with an extensive list of illnesses and conditions. At the top of that list is CBD’s ability to relieve pain and reduce inflammation.
CBD triggers CB2 receptors in the immune system that help regulate it, ensuring that the inflammatory process stays in check.
It does a similar thing in the nervous system allowing it to help with all forms of pain, not just inflammatory.
CBD oils are notable for their low affinity to cause side effects in most people. The biggest concern is it may interact with medications that are metabolized in the liver.
CBD comes in a number of different forms from oils to gummies but CBD topicals are popular for inflammation and pain because you can apply it directly to the area to need help with.
Omega Fatty Acids
Omega fatty 3-6-9 acids, especially omega-3s, are one of the most well-known anti-inflammatories around. Fish, soy, and hemp seeds are all high in omega 3s, and you can find each used in omega fatty acids supplements like fish oil.
When looking to supplement these awesome fats, you want a supplement that has more omega-3s than the rest.
As well, there are two omega-3s, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), and you want a high ratio of EPA to DHA to reduce cellular inflammation.
Most people take fish oil when looking to supplement omega fatty acids, and the most common side effects from them are fishy-tasting burps.
But no worries if you want to avoid that as most grocery stores also carry hemp seed omega fatty acids supplements if they carry fish oil.
Excessive use of omega fatty acids can cause bleeding gums, low blood pressure, and digestive issues.
We have millions of microbes — both good and bad — in our gut that play an important role in our health. Good bacteria help reduce gut inflammation, and that’s what probiotics intend to deliver.
Improving your gut health can lead to big health benefits, even improving your mental health.
A temporary increase in gas and bloating are the most common side effect of probiotics. People with immune system problems may want to avoid them as it can cause infection and a few other issues.
Last, make sure you check out the full ingredient list if you’re allergic to anything as eggs, dairy, and soy are often used.
Probiotics is still an emerging science, and one of the big problems with it is keeping the good microbes happy and healthy when transferring them from the lab to your stomach.
Many probiotic supplements perform poorly in studies as a result. So you may want to stick to fermented foods like yogurt, sauerkraut, and kimchi that all have probiotic properties.
You probably know capsaicin as the ingredient that gives peppers their spicy taste. Studies show that capsaicin has comparable anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving effects as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory analgesics (NSAIDs).
Studies have seen that capsaicin can make tumor cells commit suicide, though how well it does this is still unknown.
The most commonly reported side effects of capsaicin are redness, dryness, burning, pain, and itchiness.
It can make your skin more sensitive to the sun, so make sure to apply sunscreen, but you should be applying sunscreen daily anyway.
Devil’s Claw Root
The active compound, harpagoside, in Devil’s Claw Root has been seen to help with both inflammation and pain in preliminary studies.
This has made it popular for treating rheumatic conditions that affect ligaments, bones, muscles, tendons, and joints.
Most people experience no side effects with Devil’s Claw Root with the most common being diarrhea.
It can exacerbate certain illnesses so you may want to avoid taking the herb if you have a heart condition, diabetes, gallstones, or stomach ulcers.
Ginger has been used in medicine for thousands of years both as an anti-inflammatory and more commonly as a relief from stomach discomfort and nausea. It owns its health benefits to its active compound, gingerol.
Gingerol is both touted as a fantastic anti-inflammatory as well as for its antioxidant benefits. Antioxidants can destroy harmful free radicals that can damage our skin as we age, making us look older than what we really are.
Back to ginger’s anti-inflammatory benefits, in one double-blind study, 247 people who struggle with osteoarthritis (OA) in their knees were split into two groups. One group received ginger while the other a placebo.
The group who took ginger reported less pain and required less pain medication.
Ginger is often paired with Tumeric as they come together to make one tasty tea that helps with joint pain and stiffness.
As you can assume, ginger doesn’t pose much of a health risk to us. It’s recommended that you don’t exceed 4 grams a day, but that’s a lot of ginger tea. Stomach discomfort is the biggest worry when to consuming too much ginger.
Glucosamine is a building-block of cartilage and is essential to its ability to repair and regenerate. When cartilage wears down, our bones rub against each other, and this can cause us immense pain and limit our mobility.
Glucosamine is a highly prioritize supplement as it’s nearly impossible to get enough in our diet with it only coming from the shells of shellfish. If you had to pick only one supplement that you couldn’t fix with food, it’s definitely glucosamine.
Along with its ability to rebuild cartilage, studies have shown it has anti-inflammatory properties.
When looked at in studies, a dose of 500 milligrams, three times a day is usually the norm, with osteoarthritis being the most frequently studied condition.
It’s pretty rare to experience side effects from supplementing glucosamine, but in rare cases, it has caused bloating, constipation, gas, indigestion, and heartburn. It’s recommended to take glucosamine with food to avoid digestive issues.
You frequently see chondroitin paired with glucosamine as it's also a major factor in cartilage where it helps it retain water. In the U.S. you can find chondroitin in the supplement aisle, but in some European countries, it’s approved as a prescription medication — usually for osteoarthritis.
Chondroitin’s side effects are similar to glucosamine with stomach discomfort and other related issues being the most commonly reported. Again, taking it with food is believed to help with these symptoms.
MSM is organic sulfur that’s used for reducing inflammation and relieving joint pain. As well, MSM has immunity boosting capabilities. Sulfur helps form connection tissues, and studies have found that 6,000 mg of MSM can help symptoms of osteoarthritis.
Unlike other herbal remedies on our list, MSM is quickly absorbed into the bloodstream and can start working within 30 minutes, making it popular in pain and inflammatory relief balms.
Abdominal discomfort, diarrhea, and nausea are the most common side effects seen with MSM though they are fairly rare to see. Fatigue, trouble concentrating, headaches, and insomnia have also been reported in a few cases as well.
Last Words On Using Supplements For Inflammatory Pain
Because of the side effects that can come with long-term use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen, many people like going for a natural remedy that offers a safer solution to pain and inflammation.
As well, many have found activities like exercising, yoga, and mediation have helped with pain caused by inflammation. It’s important to remember that it often takes a combination of things to improve your health, so don’t give up when it doesn’t always work out. And remember, don’t neglect your diet!