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NSAIDs, or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, are used to reduce pain that is associated with inflammation. This could be the inflammation and pain related to premenstrual cramping, or it could be used to reduce chronic inflammation, such as in the case of arthritis.
Worldwide, NSAIDs are the most common group of drugs used for pain relief. (1)
Examples of common NSAIDs available at most drugstores, pharmacies, and supermarkets include:
Although they seem innocent, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs have been the cause of 43% of drug-related emergency visits in the US. To safely alleviate chronic pain caused by inflammation, start by nourishing your inner ecology with friendly gut bacteria!
Besides pain relief uses, aspirin is often taken in small doses to thin the blood and manage the threat of a stroke or heart disease.
Unfortunately, NSAIDs have side effects. Many studies have found that NSAIDs directly contribute to inflammation in the gut.
In fact, it has been estimated that 103,000 hospitalizations and 16,500 deaths each year are the result of NSAID use. According to one source, this represents 43% of drug-related emergency visits in the United States. (2)
The trouble with NSAIDs goes beyond even the emergency room. Because it has been determined that NSAIDs directly affect the lining of the gut wall, these all too common drugs may cause more problems than they promise to fix.
A study that was published this past month revealed that NSAIDs, specifically ibuprofen, can intensify gut permeability. (3)
Previous research has already shown that a long list of pro-inflammatory activities can directly affect the gastrointestinal tract and induce leaky gut. Some examples include:
Intense exercise, especially the level of exercise that athletes engage in, can lead to tight and sore muscles. The study reported that athletes frequently take a mild pain reliever, like an NSAID, before a workout in order to enhance performance.
As it turns out, this makes a bad situation worse.
While exercise can injure the barrier of the small intestine, ibuprofen taken before exercise was found to aggravate an already compromised gut barrier system.
Because of its effects in the gut, the researchers of the study concluded that, “NSAID consumption by athletes is not harmless and should be discouraged.”
Sometimes, injury to the small intestine from NSAID use is without symptoms, or asymptomatic. (11)
This means that even though NSAIDs have been found to create lesions in the small intestine, there may be no obvious sign of the problem.
Thus the irony of aspirin and other NSAIDs is that while these drugs shut down the inflammatory pathways in the body, they also create enough tissue damage to cause inflammation in other parts of the body!
Sitting on top of the largest mass of lymph tissue in the body, the gastrointestinal tract is literally the hub of the immune system.
There is a saying in Chinese medicine that all disease begins in the gut. According to modern science, this is more often the case than not.
Once the walls of the intestinal tract become inflamed, they are permeable or leaky. When it comes to protecting the body from things like allergies and food sensitivities, this is a problem.
As if this was not bad enough, damage to the intestinal walls (a leaky gut) means:
A yeast infection can very easily migrate outside the gut to other areas of the body, causing things like joint pain, skin disorders, depression, and brain fog.
This is especially true when two factors are in place:
In order to thrive, our cells must be clean and well nourished. While this is a simple formula for radiant health, it can be difficult to achieve when we are eating the foods that are available on most supermarket shelves.
Remember, when the body is in pain, there is inflammation. If inflammation persists long enough, tissue begins to die. Inflammation is a sign that cells are either:
The Body Ecology Diet was designed to heal intestinal damage. The most important thing you can focus on is healing the gut.
Eating fermented foods and drinking InnergyBiotic will replenish the beneficial bacteria essential to a healthy inner ecosystem. These sources of living probiotics and enzymes are much more powerful than an encapsulated product.
Cut sugar from your diet and use stevia as a zero calorie natural sweetener.
If you are taking aspirin as a blood-thinning agent, you may want to investigate:
If you are used to taking an over-the-counter pain reliever, we recommend that you explore other options for pain relief. Some examples of holistic pain relief are:
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, otherwise known as NSAIDs, are over-the-counter drugs like aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen used to alleviate pain caused by inflammation. Aspirin may also be taken in small doses to thin the blood and reduce the risk of heart disease or a stroke.
Yet NSAIDs aren't without side effects; research has confirmed that the use of NSAIDs can directly cause gut inflammation. In short, NSAIDs may cause more trouble than they're worth.
Research has also confirmed that the use of ibuprofen can intensify gut permeability. In one study where athletes took an NSAID before a workout to improve performance, it was proven to aggravate an already weak gut barrier. Once the walls of the digestive tract are inflamed, they can become leaky and lead to poor nutrient absorption, exhaustion, and chronic infection.
To heal intestinal damage caused by regular NSAID use, you can rely on these helpful Body Ecology principles to get your health back on track:
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