I recently sprained my ankle and have been in quite a bit of pain.
Q. Dear Terry, “I recently sprained my ankle and have been in quite a bit of pain. I’m a very active person and want to heal as quickly as possible. What can I do for the pain and to help the healing process?”– Stan P., Bismarck, ND
A. Dear Stan, When it comes to dealing with pain and inflammation, I think there are three ingredients that are incredibly safe and effective. I prefer a blend of curcumin, boswellia, and black sesame oil for fast pain relief. Curcumin from turmeric is one of the world’s leading natural pain medicines. Curcumin fights inflammation in the body, which is one of the key drivers of the pain response. There is also a lot of research on curcumin supporting joint function and mobility.
Boswellia works synergistically with curcumin to modulate the inflammatory pathways in the body. Inflammation is not a singular activity, but instead a combination of many inflammatory pathways. Boswellia works exceptionally well on a pathway called 5-lipoxygenase, or 5-LOX. This pathway is incredibly hard to address from a conventional or natural perspective. A placebo-controlled clinical study found that people had a higher pain threshold and greater pain tolerance when taking boswellia. I would take a boswellia that is uniquely standardized to contain high levels of the key compound AKBA (acetyl-11-keto-β-boswellic acid), and low levels of the pro-inflammatory compound BBA (beta-boswellic acid).
Lastly, sesame oil contains compounds that have been shown to have anti-inflammatory effects for synovial (joint) tissue. A compound within sesame oil, called sesamin, helps to protect the cushioning elements of our joints.
A clinical study using curcumin (blended with turmeric essential oil) and boswellia emulsified in black sesame oil demonstrated that the herbal ingredients worked as fast as acetaminophen for acute pain. I recommend taking 1,000 mg of these ingredients one or two times per day.
To facilitate healing, I recommend a combination of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that are specific to ligaments and tendons. Vitamins B6 and B12 are essential for tendons, ligaments, and flexibility. Vitamin C is crucial for collagen formation after injury. Niacinamide helps to prevent the breakdown of collagen, which is a building block of joint tissue and cartilage.
One of the most crucial ingredients is manganese. You need at least 36 mg of manganese to have an impact, so make sure the dosing of this critical nutrient is sufficient. Magnesium plays a role in certain enzymes that help the body repair damaged tissues. Zinc helps to ensure that any tendon or ligament repair proceeds along the right track to help you get active again. Bromelain helps to repair the tears in ligaments and tendons that can occur from injury or inflammation.
I recommend 300 mg of vitamin C (from ascorbic acid), 200 mg of niacin (as niacinamide), 40 mg of vitamin B6 (as pyridoxal-5-phosphate), 500 mcg of vitamin B12 (as methylcobalamin), 75 mg of magnesium (as magnesium bisglycinate), 10 mg of zinc (from zinc bisglycinate), 36 mg of manganese (from manganese bisglycinate), 250 mg of boswellia, and 100 mg of bromelain per day.
Terry . . . Naturally