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When we’re experiencing pain whether it’s a stomach ache, toothache, or a sore throat, life gets much harder. But before you reach for over-the-counter pain relief, you may be surprised to know that you could have the perfect cure for your pain problem in your kitchen. Especially handy if the pain is in the middle of the night!
Check out these easy kitchen cures for the most common types of pain:
Muscle and joint pain: ginger
It has been known for centuries that ginger works wonders on upset stomachs, including morning sickness and motion sickness, but recent research into ginger’s healing properties has discovered that it has wonderful anti-inflammatory properties too, and is particularly effective in reducing exercise-induced muscle pain. A little ginger each day, just 1 tablespoon of dried ginger or 2 teaspoons of the fresh stuff can reduce muscle pain caused by exercise by up to 25%.
Although a toothache is usually a good indicator that you need to go to the dentist to investigate the source of the pain, temporary relief from toothache can be found by using cloves. Cloves contain a powerful natural anaesthetic called eugenol as well as other antimicrobial, germicidal and antiseptic properties. But it doesn’t substitute the dentist, just gives you temporary relief.
Heartburn: apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is credited with doing all sorts of great things to your insides – not only can it detoxify the liver, reduce bloating, and help with weight loss, it can also relieve the symptoms of heartburn quickly. Because it is rich in mallic and tartaric acids, (both involved in the digestion process), drinking a little apple cider vinegar (1 tablespoon mixed with 230ml of water) before each meal will speed up the digestive process so that the stomach empties faster and leaves no time for the pain of heartburn to set in.
Garlic really is pretty much a cure-all! Not only does it fight the good fight against, colds and flu— but it can tackle earaches too. The active ingredients in garlic is selenium and germanium which have powerful anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties, and are toxic to many bacteria that cause pain. If you infuse a couple of garlic cloves in olive oil and then use a few drops warmed up in the ear canal as needed. Massaging a little of the garlic oil around the ear can also help with lymphatic drainage.
Tummy aches: pineapple
While pineapple can be the cause of some people stomach aches, for others it can actually be a cure for bloating and stomach pain. Researchers discovered that pineapple is high in an enzyme that helps with the fast breakdown of proteins that can cause pain in the stomach and small intestine. Just one cup of fresh pineapple a day is enough to relieve some sufferer’s of pain completely.
Sinus pain: horseradish
If you’ve ever eaten horseradish as a condiment, you’re already aware that it can clear out the nasal passages with its eye-watering odour that seems to shoots straight through the nostrils. So perhaps it will come as no surprise that horseradish is your best friend when fighting sinus pain and infection. One teaspoon of horseradish taken twice a day is more efficient than over-the-counter decongestants when it comes to opening and draining clogged sinuses
Migraine pain: coffee
If you suffer from migraines, you may already know that coffee can work miracles when taken at first sign of that telltale head throb. The caffeine in coffee helps pain medication work faster and better so much so that many pain relief medications include caffeine already. Caffeine is also a vasoconstrictor (constricts the blood vessels), which alleviates some of the pain associated with migraine – a type of headache that is caused by the dilation of blood vessels and associated nerve pain.
Sore throat pain: lemon and honey drink
A warm drink of lemon and honey has long been recommended for sore throat sufferers, and for good reason. Honey is full of antibacterial and antimicrobial properties and will not only soothe your throat, it also does some good work and fights the bugs that are giving you pain. Lemon, being acidic, also kills germs and can cut through mucous, giving you some much-needed relief. Hot drinks are usually the most soothing for a sore throat — though you can drink your lemon and honey cold if that’s not the case for you. Combine 2 tablespoons each of honey and lemon in a glass and add half a cup of boiling water. Stir, allow to cool a little and then sip regularly. This also makes a great throat gargle.
Headache pain: ice
When your head is pounding one of the best things you can do is soak a washcloth in ice cold water and place it on the source of the headache, perhaps your eyes, sinus area, neck or shoulders. An ice pack will do the job well — just be sure to place a clean cloth between you and your ice pack because you want the cold to be soothing not painful. Ice works to constrict blood vessels and provide relief from inflammation and pressure.
Whilst all of these remedies are proven successful, if the problem persists, we recommend that you talk to your health professional as it may be the telltale sign of something more sinister.