Yoga reduces pain in people with chronic non-specific lower back pain


Image: Yoga reduces pain in people with chronic non-specific lower back pain

Chronic non-specific lower back pain, a condition affecting thousands of people, is often treated using over-the-counter medicines that can do more harm than good. But did you know that there are safer and more effective natural treatments available for this condition? Studies have suggested that yoga is an effective way to treat chronic non-specific lower back pain.

To evaluate the effects of yoga on chronic lower back pain, researchers from Cochrane conducted a review of yoga and chronic non-specific lower back pain studies. The studies included in the review involved 1,080 participants aged between 24 and 48 who had chronic non-specific lower back pain. The trials were carried out in various parts of the world, including India, the U.K., and the U.S. The researchers also compared the effects of yoga classes that involve back exercises to non-back exercises.

The findings of the review showed that yoga practice may improve symptoms of lower back pain and enhance back-related function compared to other exercises. The researchers also noted that practicing yoga for three months may reduce pain and practicing it for over six months may improve back-related function.

“Our findings suggest that yoga exercise may lead to reducing the symptoms of lower back pain by a small amount, but the results have come from studies with a short follow-up,” said Susan Wieland, lead author of the study from the University of Maryland School of Medicine.

The researchers concluded that practicing yoga may help reduce pain and improve back function in people with chronic non-specific lower back pain. They added that their findings will help people make better choices about their treatment options in the future. (Related: Treating chronic lower back pain with yoga and physical therapy.)

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Other natural treatments for lower back pain that you may have overlooked

There are many natural treatments for lower back pain. However, some of them, like the following, are often overlooked:

  • Release your feel-good hormones: Endorphins, one of the feel-good hormones, can be as effective as any synthetic pain medication. When the body releases these hormones, pain signals are blocked from registering with the brain. They also help relieve stress, anxiety, and depression – all of which are associated with chronic back pain and which often worsen the pain. Aerobic exercise, massage therapy, and meditation are some ways to promote the release of endorphins in the body.
  • Get adequate sleep: Although most people with chronic back pain suffer from sleeping problems, the lack of quality sleep also makes the pain worse. Thus, it is important to address sleeping problems, too.
  • Use cold therapy: Applying cold compress can help reduce lower back pain. It works by reducing inflammation, which is a common cause of back pain. It also acts as a local anesthetic by decelerating nerve impulses, which prevents the nerves from causing pain and spasms.
  • Use heat therapy: Like cold therapy, heat therapy can relieve lower back pain. It works by stimulating blood flow and inhibiting the pain messages being sent to the brain. You can take a hot bath or shower or use a heating pad or hot water bottle.
  • Stretch your hamstrings: Tight hamstrings also contribute to lower back pain as they stress the lower back and sacroiliac joints which, in turn, cause more pain. Try to gently stretch your hamstrings at least twice a day to relieve lower back pain.

 

Sources include:

Cochrane.org

Spine-Health.com

A potential remedy for rheumatoid arthritis may be found in this Ayurvedic medicine


Image: A potential remedy for rheumatoid arthritis may be found in this Ayurvedic medicine

The classical Ayurveda medicinal system offers a potential remedy for the often crippling pain of rheumatoid arthritis. Indian researchers recently tested the efficacy of two Ayurvedic medicines – Bhallatakadi Churna with guda and Bhallatak guggulu – in relieving the painful symptoms of the chronic autoimmune disease.

Ayurveda describes rheumatoid arthritis as “Amavata.” Over the centuries, many herbal remedies have been devised to treat this disease.

Ama is a slimy substance similar to mucus. It is produced by digestive and metabolic problems and clogs the channels of the body. Ama combines with the harmful substance vata to create amavata, an agonizing disease that can cause deformities.

The Ayurveda’s description of amavata matches etiopathogenesis of rheumatoid arthritis. Modern medicine traces the disease to inflammatory mediators that injure the micro blood vessels in the joints.

Researchers from the Government Ayurvedic College – Burhanpur (GAC Burhanpur) and the National Institute of Ayurveda (NIA) tested an Ayurvedic medicine prescribed for rheumatoid arthritis. Bhallatak guggulu yoga is made from four herbs that prevent inflammation, control immune response, scavenge free radicals, protect cartilage, and exhibit anti-arthritic activity.

Furthermore, the researchers hoped to improve the management of patients with rheumatoid arthritis, thereby allowing the latter to enjoy higher quality of life. (Related: Natural remedy for rheumatoid arthritis found in this traditional Chinese ethnomedicine.)

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Two Ayurvedic medicines tested on rheumatoid arthritis patients

The clinical trial involved 60 patients with rheumatoid arthritis in the age range of 20 to 60 years, with many of them being 41 to 50 years of age. The majority of them (85 percent) were female. They were randomly divided into two groups of 30 participants.

The first group received daily doses of 2.5 grams of Bhallatakadi churna with guda, another Ayurvedic medicine recommended for treating Amavata. The second group was given 500 milligrams of Bhallatak guggul medicine, the primary target of this study.

The intervention period lasted for three months. Every 15 days, the researchers performed follow-ups on the participants.

At the end of the trial, the researchers analyzed the results of the Ayurvedic therapy based on the following criteria: body ache, loss of appetite, listlessness, heaviness of body and joint, thirst, fever, indigestion, and pain.

Participants also rated the pain, swelling, stiffness, and tenderness of their joints. Finally, the researchers measured the effects of either substance on the rheumatoid arthritis factor, the antiseptrolysin O titer, and C-reactive protein level of the patient.

Effects of Bhallatak guggul on Amavata considered to be statistically significant

The researchers found that Bhallatakadi churna with guda and Bhallatak guggul were both able to improve the primary symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis. Statistics-wise, the effect of the two Ayurvedic treatments were considered to be very significant.

The results on general symptoms – which included pain, stiffness, and tenderness of the joints – were also regarded as statistically significant. So were the effects of the trial medicines on the rheumatoid arthritis factor, the antiseptrolysin O titer, and C-reactive protein of patients.

The data matched the etiology of Amavata as described in the Ayurvedic classics. This supported the similarities between the description of this disease and the etiology of rheumatoid arthritis.

Bhallatak Guggulu is made up of four herbs: Haritaki, Bhallatak, Tila and Guda. Each herb played important roles in stopping the pathogenesis of Amavata, thereby alleviating the symptoms of the disease.

The researchers concluded that both Ayurvedic regimens were able to provide significant relief for patients with Amavata. However, patients who received Bhallatak Guggulu enjoyed faster and greater improvement of their symptoms when compared to the Bhallatakadi churna with guda treatment group.

Therefore, Bhallatak Gugguli was considered to be the superior Ayurvedic remedy for reducing the painful effects of rheumatoid arthritis.

Additional articles about Ayurveda-based natural remedies that can alleviate rheumatoid arthritis can be found at AlternativeMedicine.news.

Sources include:

Science.news

EasyAyurveda.com

IJRAP.net [PDF]

IJAM.co.in

After eradicating MSG from her diet, young girl stops experiencing autism-like symptoms


Brooke Reid was diagnosed as moderately autistic at the tender age of two. She had no eye contact, rigid play experiences, exhibited signs of obsessive compulsive disorder, was overcome by tantrums and couldn’t communicate socially. Brooke’s parents were both doctors. Her mother, Katherine Reid, Ph.D, is a biochemist. Her journey to help her daughter became a mission that is now assisting millions.

Natural News reports, ” . . . Dr. Reid’s free time was dedicated to researching autism and the struggles that other families were experiencing. Through her research, she learned that many children suffering from the disorder had improved symptoms after altering their diets to exclude monosodium glutamate (MSG), gluten and dairy products. . .Image: After eradicating MSG from her diet, young girl stops experiencing autism-like symptoms

“After Dr. Reid learned that naturally occurring glutamate was responsible for transmitting signals between neurons and other cells, she felt that an imbalanced diet filled with MSG could be worsening her daughter’s symptoms and potentially even the cause of them.

“. . . With MSG in nearly 95 percent of processed foods, and often unlabeled, Dr. Reid knew that it wouldn’t be easy eliminating it from Brooke’s diet; however, she was willing to try.

“Despite skepticism from the medical community regarding the link between autism and MSG, Dr. Reid withdrew MSG from her daughter’s diet and began seeing improvements in just five weeks.”

There were a series of nutritional therapies that Dr. Reid began to experiment with. She learned about thevitamin and mineral deficiencies that most Americans have. Her research on glutamate was eye opening, and in her words, “shocking,” as she discovered it’s not as easy to remove it from the diet, because it has fifty different names.