Thirst-Quenching foodsMay 5, 2015
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Cherries for arthritis, muscle pain: Compounds in cherries, called anthocyanins – the same phytonutrients that give cherries their rich ruby hue – are powerful antioxidants that work in two ways to tamp down pain. They block inflammation and they inhibit pain enzymes, just like aspirin, naproxen, and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories.
- Ginger for migraines, arthritis, sore muscles: This spicy root is a traditional stomach soother, easing sea sickness and nausea. It’s believed to work by breaking up intestinal gas and possibly blocking a receptor in the gut that induces vomiting. But there are good reasons to eat ginger even when you’re not doubled over. Another natural aspirin impersonator and anti-inflammatory, it can offer relief from migraines, arthritis pain, and muscle aches. Grate it into dishes, make ginger tea by placing sliced, peeled gingerroot in boiling water and letting it steep for 15 minutes. For ginger lemonade, combine grated gingerroot, lemon juice, and honey with ice water.
- Turmeric for achy joints, colitis (inflammation of the colon): This essential curry spice has been used for years in Ayurvedic medicine to relieve pain and speed up digestion. But researchers like it for another reason: its anti-inflammatory properties, courtesy of a substance called curcumin. Turmeric can protect the body from tissue destruction and joint inflammation and also preserve good nerve cell function.
- Hot peppers for arthritis: The same peppers that singe your tongue and bring tears to your eyes can take away pain. An ingredient in hot peppers, called capsaicin, does the trick by stimulating nerve endings and depleting a chemical that relays pain signals. The hotter the pepper, the more capsaicin it contains.