Chronic Back Pain – Part One – Diet

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Chronic pain is pain that has occurred for months or years. Those who suffer with chronic pain know the psychological issues and physical limitations that pain can cause on a daily basis. Often when a person is experiencing pain in this matter, the first choice in pain relief is to grab an anti-inflammatory or pain suppressant type of medication.  Although these medications can be beneficial in covering up or treating pain quite quickly, there are many adverse side effects in doing so.  Luckily, there are many alternatives to treating inflammation and pain in a safe and natural way.

Incorporating foods into your diet that help to reduce and prevent inflammation and foods that actually support the healing process of your muscle and joint tissues is a simple way to facilitate relief from the discomforts of chronic pain.  Along with reducing pain, you will also notice a change in mood, energy levels, and your health in general.

Your best choices in foods to fight pain and inflammation are:

-Organic, whole, fresh fruits (especially blueberries)
-Organic Bright coloured vegetables and dark, leafy greens
– Unsalted, raw nuts, seeds and oils from nuts and seeds (I really like Udo’s oil, which you can purchase in the refrigerated section of most health food stores and some grocery stores)
-Seafood, lean poultry, lean red meats, and soy proteins/tofu (Watch for excess sodium found in some canned meats, processed and deli lunch meats and try to buy organic whenever possible)
-Olive oils, fish oils, grape seed oil.
-Some Spices- Turmeric, Ginger, Rosemary, and Basil
-WATER, WATER, WATER (so many of us do not drink the recommended amount of water each day. Water is so beneficial in the overall function of your entire body, and is needed to repair tissues and flush toxins and inflammation out of the body)

Avoid foods that are known to trigger inflammation, such as sugar, salt, hydrogenated oils (found in margarine and processed foods) and refined grains (IE: white bread, white rice etc).
Long lasting change does not happen overnight, so everyday make it a goal to incorporate at least one of these foods into your daily meals. You will start to feel better within a few weeks and this diet adjustment will become a regular routine.

Chronic Pain Combat Smoothie (serves 2)
This is a smoothie I drink quite regularly.  I will often add whey protein isolate (plain or vanilla flavoured) or plain low fat Greek yogurt (20g of protein/portion) as protein also helps to aid in muscle repair.  It gives me loads of energy and has a TON of antioxidants and pain fighting ingredients.

INGREDIENTS
1 whole organic banana
1 cup organic frozen blueberries
1 cup organic raw spinach
2 cups plain almond milk/soy milk
2 Tbsp Udos oil (or any nut oil)

In a blender add all of the ingredients. Blend on high until all ingredients are fully blended. If you like it more liquidly, add water until at desired consistency. Portion into 2 cups and ENJOY!