NSAID‘s (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) are the most widely used pain relievers in the world.  In the United States there are more than 70 million prescriptions written each year, and if you include over-the-counter NSAID‘s like aspirin and ibuprofen the number jumps to more than 30 billion doses annually. 

NSAIDs work primarily by inhibiting your body’s ability to synthesize prostaglandins.  But the NSAIDs suppress and interfere with the prostaglandins natural ability to heal inflammation. Of course while the body goes to work at reducing inflammation, many are looking for pain relief in the meantime. Unfortunately, NSAIDs can cause more harm than good:

Stomach upset, nausea, vomiting, intestinal inflammation, and overtime this inflammation causes ‘leaks’ in the gut that alter healthy gut flora and causes many chronic and degenerative diseases.

The worst side effect of all includes death. According to a 1998 study published in the American Journal of Medicine:

“Conservative calculations estimate that approximately 107,000 patients are hospitalized annually for non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID)-related gastrointestinal (GI) complications and at least 16,500 NSAID-related deaths occur each year among arthritis patients alone. The figures of all NSAID users would be overwhelming, yet the scope of this problem is generally under-appreciated.”

Most NSAIDs and pharmaceutical drugs are a chemical reproduction of medicinal plants that exist in nature anyway. So instead of reaching for Advil, Motrin, Naproxen, Aleve, Diclofenac, Celebrex…Try a natural pain reliever. Curcumin and turmeric are natural anti-inflammatories and pain relievers that have no side effects.  I prescribe Curaphen to my patients and keep it in my natural-medicine cabinet at home. And for natural, kid friendly pain relievers we use a liquid curcumin and hide it in a favorite beverage (instead of Children’s Tylenol).

This is not to say that modern medicine and pharmaceutical drugs has no place.  It’s just that they should not be our first line of defense, there are many conservative steps we can attempt first.

That said, just like pharmaceutical drugs, not all supplements are created equal in this $32 billion supplement industry. There are many toxic fillers, GMO’s, and additives hidden in over-the-counter supplements, which can also cause more harm than good.

In Good Health,
Dr. Benjamin Kleinbrodt

PS If you’re really ready to fight inflammation from the inside-out, try our 30 Day ReNewed Life Program where you will learn to re-imagine healthy living with a diet specifically designed to reduce inflammation and increase prevention.

Research Cited: