September 20, 2012

Turmeric - Sounds Like a Miracle to Me

Tonight I'm feeling particularly excited about an article I just read about the health benefits of turmeric. I highly enjoy eating all types of curries and it just so happens that turmeric is one of the main ingredients in the dish.

Since bringing our baby Earth side, I've been dealing with a lot of lower back spasming and inflammation. I think the cause is a combination of my body changing during pregnancy, the amount of weight pulling on my back, the curvature of my back during that time period, and my beautiful, but complicated home birth itself (to find out more, read my birth story in the main navigation on this blog, in my birth story). I don't feel it quite as often as I did in the beginning of my postpartum period. When I do it's as extreme as it ever has been, and more often than not it's when I sleep too long (I feel OLD when I say this), the weather is frigid or rainy, or sleep in a funny position.

35 weeks 1 day pregnant with our son.
I've gone to a primary care physician and not much came of that. I don't really have time for physical therapy where I am in my life with my toddler son and family. She had suggested that, and she prescribed me nuerontin for the pain, a muscle relaxer for the spasming, as well as a stronger form of ibuprofen for the inflammation. I'm not the kind of person who is thrilled about taking pharmaceuticals for an extended period of time like that. I filled my prescriptions, tried it out, and all they ended up doing was making me fall asleep. Nothing really seemed to touch the pain. So, I didn't continue taking any of it.

On top of the lower back issues, I have mild carpal tunnel in both wrists. I didn't know that I had developed this until I started working postpartum. I was working third shift as a commercial cleaner for a Target store. This job was labor intensive and would kill not only my poor, aching back - but apparently, my wrists, too. All of the sweeping and mopping just killed the poor things. I would get home at 8am after my shift was over, fall asleep for a little while, and wake up with my hands completely numb, yet burning. The burning would eventually go away as my body woke up, but the numbness would never fully go away. That is, until I quit that job and was able to relax and let my body heal from the intense laboring at work.

Needless to say, I have been looking for a natural and effective remedy for inflammatory pain. And, to get back to my original point - turmeric's active ingredient is curcumin. It contains beneficial nutrients in only 2 tablespoons. It's uses in traditional Chinese and Indian medicine has been backed up by scientific studies. The active ingredient is most commonly used as an anti-inflammatory, rivaling hydrocortisone shots and ibuprofen - without all of the bad side effects. Turmeric has many, many medical benefits - long term & short term. I, for one, am entirely excited to eating one of my favorite meals more regularly and reap the benefits of this delicious spice!

For more information on turmeric and it's health benefits please visit The Health Benefits Of...

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