What causes back pain? Most back pain is the result of muscle strain. Poor posture, weakened bones or cartilage, a slipped disc, a pinched nerve, or stress and emotional upset are other causes. Diseases such as arthritis or osteoporosis may lead to chronic back pain.
How supplements can help? Before beginning a therapeutic supplement programme, check with your doctor to determine whether medical or surgical treatment is warranted. Supplements are aimed at building strong bones and muscles, reducing inflammation and treating pain. Effects may be felt within a week.
People prone to back problems should start with vitamins and minerals that strengthen bones and cartilage, such as calcium, magnesium, vitamin C, vitamin D and manganese. To reduce inflammation and pain you can have success using bromelain, an enzyme found in pineapples. The nutritional supplement glucosamine builds cartilage, including the tissue supporting the spinal discs. And the herb white willow bark has pain-relieving characteristics similar to those of aspirin, but with fewer side effects. Rich in omega-3 fatty acids, flaxseed oil may also have healing analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties.
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All these supplements may reduce the need for conventional pain relievers and, except for white willow bark, can be taken along with them. Other beneficial supplements include S-adenosylmethionine, or SAM, a form of the muscle-strengthening, collagen-building amino acid methionine; boswellia a herbal remedy with anti-inflammatory properties; and niacinamide, a form of niacin( vitamin B3) that may be effective against arthritic back pain.