Four pain-relieving ingredients you can grow at home
You may have heard about the pain-relieving properties that natural herbs can offer, but did you know about the additional benefits of growing them yourself? Beyond the cost savings and convenience of having fresh ingredients right outside your door, there is also growing evidence that gardening itself can have a positive impact on your health and wellness.
If you’re suffering from neck or back pain, starting a small herb garden is an easy entry into this healthy activity that can also help you reap natural pain relief. As you plan your garden, try to select herbs that are easy to grow and offer a range of health benefits. Another consideration is ease of extraction and accessibility. Some herbs believed to reduce pain and inflammation, such as boswellia, require special preparation that may be better left to a professional herbalist.
Natural ingredients that are easy to grow
To help you start your garden, here are four herbs and spices that are both friendly to new gardeners and easy to add to delicious, spine-healthy dishes.
• Turmeric. Turmeric is a bright yellow spice that is a core part of Indian cuisine. There is strong evidence that turmeric is a powerful natural pain reliever and an anti-inflammatory. While most ideally grown in mild-to-warm climates, turmeric can also be grown indoors if you live in a colder area.
• Rosemary. This fragrant and widely used herb has a laundry list of health benefits including anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds, helping with digestion and protecting the brain. Rosemary lives for two years or longer and can be grown in a wide range of climates. Many gardeners grow rosemary in a pot or container so it can be moved indoors during the winter.
• Basil. Not only is basil a sweet and delicious ingredient in many dishes, including pesto, but it is also packed with vitamin K and magnesium. While it is quick and easy to grow, basil requires a lot of sunlight and is best grown during summer months.
• Ginger. This anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving spice can be used in everything from sushi and tea to yummy desserts like ginger snaps. Ginger is part of the same family as turmeric and is successfully grown indoors by many.
Other nutrient-rich and easy-to-grow herbs to consider adding are chives, thyme, mint and parsley. Although not often used as an ingredient in cooking, aloe vera is also a wonderful addition to any garden that can potentially offer natural pain relief.
Living a spine healthy lifestyle
The low-impact activity and mental health boost offered by gardening can be an essential part of a holistic treatment plan for chronic pain related to a spine condition. In fact, a 2017 study showed a strong link between gardening and both physical and mental health among thousands of people with a range of health concerns. As always, work with your doctor to develop an activity and nutrition plan that is right for you and your state of health.
If you want to learn more about treatment options for neck pain, back pain or other symptoms related to a spine condition, reach out to the caring team at Laser Spine Institute. We’re happy to provide a free MRI review* to determine if you are a potential candidate for our minimally invasive outpatient spine surgery.