Chronic pain is a universal issue with symptoms that include muscle pain, tissue pain, sleep disturbance, withdrawal from activity, fatigue, and depression. For other ways to find pain relief, many people consider altering their diet. Certain chemicals in food may prompt the release of neurotransmitters that can increase the body’s sensitivity to pain. These neurotransmitters cause the neurons in your spinal cord to experience increased sensitization to inflammation and cell damage, which may affect how your body processes pain.
For those chronic pain suffers who are interested in modifying their meal choice, it is recommended to focus on fruits and vegetables to achieve an anti-inflammatory diet. These diets are often successful in alleviating undesirable side effects of some chronic pain medications that cause sleepiness, and general fatigue and haziness.
Chronic pain patients can consider the following three diet guidelines:
- Eat your vegetables.
Make a conscious effort to eat the rainbow. By consuming between eight and nine servings of vegetables everyday, you’ll begin to experience some lessening of your pain symptoms. If you are not too full, have a few servings of fruit as well. Vegetables to consider are brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage.
- Watch your grains and dairy.
In an effort to maintain an anti-inflammatory diet, it is best to limit your consumption of these two food groups. When selecting what grains to add to your diet, opt for whole grains including oats, brown rice, quinoa, rye, barley, spelt, buckwheat, and wheat.
- Limit the red meat you eat.
Replace eating red meat on a regular basis with fish and other rich protein or vegetarian main dishes.
In addition to these three diet fixes, incorporate gentle exercises into your daily routine to get down to your ideal weight. Independent of your nutrition intake, weight loss provides anti-inflammatory benefits on its own.
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