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Unfortunately growing ‘up’ doesn’t do your back many favours. Once you’re a Grown Up, your back has endured many more years of slumping at the computer, sleeping in bad beds and aches and pains from overdoing it on the sports field or dance floor!
In fact, an estimated 8 out of 10 people suffer from back pain.
It’s tempting to reach for a quick fix in painkillers and Non-Steroidal Anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs). But a healthier approach is to try some natural solutions.
One solution that has proven benefits for muscle aches and pains is the mineral magnesium. Magnesium is commonly deficient due to less than perfect dietary choices (too much refined food) and because we tend to enjoy diuretics like coffee and alcohol.
Many people find taking a magnesium supplement does wonders for their back pain and fatigued, stiff muscles, helping them feel more flexible.
Magnesium also helps with cramping which commonly occurs in major muscles like the calves and commonly occurs at night.
Magnesium can be taken during the day or at night. When taken at night, it also supports healthy, restorative sleep, helps with night cramps and restless legs and is good for people with a tendency for interrupted sleep.
Other considerations for back pain are natural anti-inflammatories – fish oil and curcumin.
Fish oil supports the body’s natural anti-inflammatory processes. The need for it is greater when you eat little or no fish or when you have an existing inflammation – such as in back pain or arthritis.
The trend setting natural anti-inflammatory right now is curcumin and many people are finding it does wonders for back pain, muscle pain, stiffness and inflexibility. To get the best result, you must choose a high quality extract where the curcumin is definitely being absorbed. A problem with curcumin can be ensuring absorption.
Once you’ve chosen the best supplement (or combination) for you, you might consider some other holistic approaches to your back pain.
One that might surprise you, is exercise. Although it’s tempting to move less when you have a sore back, it’s actually recommended that you keep moving as much as possible (while taking care for your safety..) to try and maintain flexibility and strength.
It might be that you just need to alter your exercise routine somewhat and try some of those dreaded sit-ups or abdominal strengtheners. Sometimes, back pain can be down to having weak abdominals so strengthening your abs can actually benefit your back.
Always check with a health professional about the type of exercise that might be right for you.
For more information on supplements or to speak to a Blackmores Naturopath, phone the Blackmores Naturopathic Advisory line on 0508 75 74 73.
More information on managing the health of your joints, bones and muscles can be found on the Blackmores website’s joint health hub.