Long before medical doctors banded together and started the American Medical Association, plants were used for healing. Even in the first years of the association, doctors used herbs to heal their patients.
Tennis Elbow Existed Before The Turn of the Century
Women and their families learned what to pick from the fields for infections, recovery, strength and endurance, and better memory power.
Back then, it was imperative to know what to do when a family member had sun burn from being out in the garden for far too long or when a child fell off a swing and had gaping wounds.
And they also had to know what to do when the men came back from the fields with tendonitis from repetitive hoeing, raking or chopping down tall plants in the field. Men and women had tennis elbow back then as well as now.
What Do Anti Inflammatory Herbs Have To Do With Tennis Elbow?
Without topical agents sold over the counter, they had to concoct their own remedies from the field. Certain plants had anti inflammatory properties, and as you probably already know, decreasing inflammation is key to healing tennis elbow.
Inflammation brings thousands of inflammatory chemicals into an area that has been damaged, such as your elbow and the tendons surrounding it. With all the extra congestion, it becomes difficult for arterial blood to get into the area with nourishment.
Also, it becomes difficult for blood containing all the waste products – called venous blood – to get out of the area. This is why inflammation interferes with healing.
However, it’s the beginning phases of inflammation that help the body heal. The key point is not to remain in the inflammation phase for too long. If your elbow is inflamed for weeks or months or even years, then your healing is prolonged.
Anti-Inflammatory Herbs Come To The Rescue
Two herbs that have been used for centuries as anti inflammatory agents are turmeric and ginger.
Turmeric (curcumin) can be found in curries used to flavor foods, but to really get the anti inflammatory effects out of the plant, you will need larger amounts than what can be eaten in curries. Read on and later the way to take turmeric for tendonitis will be discussed.
Scientists have agreed on turmeric’s anti inflammatory effects. In one review of the literature that was reported by Oregon’s Health & Science University in March 2011, two doctors did a review of the literature on the effectiveness of turmeric for inflammation.
It’s The Polyphenols In These Plants That Brings The Goodness In
Plants often contain polyphenols that are the active ingredients for the human body. For example, resveratrol found in red wine is a polyphenol.
Capsaicin, helpful in reducing pain even in topical ointments that can be used for tennis elbow, is found in chili peppers. Green tea’s polyphenol is epigallocatechin.
The scientists found that polyphenol curcumin, the active ingredient was found in other studies to be effective for the following disorders: inflammatory bowel disease, rheumatoid arthritis, eye diseases that were associated with inflammation, IBS (Crohn’s disease), polyps, and kidney transplants.
At the end of their report, they commented that curcumin was not beneficial for those with HIV, as if to try to dismiss all the good things that curcumin did.
If this little turmeric plant is so full of anti inflammatory compounds that can help erase the inflammation in the joints of those with rheumatoid arthritis, this is something to shout about and something that gives hope to those with tendonitis.
The inflammation that occurs in rheumatoid arthritis and in tendonitis is the same.
Turmeric Is Of Benefit To Those With Joint Disorders
Another research study, found in the journal Current Drug Targets in March 2011, reported that curcumin has not only anti inflammatory effects but also anti arthritic effects, antioxidant effects, antiviral effects and anti cancer effects.
Curcumin works to decrease inflammation through the cyclooxygenase and lipoxygenase pathways, similar in some ways to omega 3 fats.
So what we have here is plenty of proof that if you take the right amount of curcumin, you just might reduce the inflammation in your elbow.
The right dosage is anywhere from 400 to 600 mg three times daily for two months.
Ginger’s Anti Inflammation Activity Discovered In The 1970’s
Another botanical agent that is helpful for the pain and inflammation of tennis elbow is ginger. Ginger is known for its anti inflammatory effects for decades. The plant works through the cyclo-oxygenase and lipoxygenase system, just like curcumin does.
The connection between ginger and anti inflammation is so good that researchers say it acts similarly to the NSAIDs, (non-steroidal anti inflammatory agents). But without the side effects of the NSAIDs.
In a very interesting study that appeared in the October 2010 Journal of Advanced Nursting, scientists looked at what would happen if ginger was used in a topical compress on arthritic joints of adults.
Ginger had an anti inflammatory effect and also brought heat, pain-killing properties and stimulatory effects as well.
With ginger, the effective dose for those with tennis elbow is 500 to 1000 mg twice daily for at least two months.
Find out how in Tennis Elbow Secrets Revealed.