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The Pain Relief Diet
by Bonnie Minsky MA, MPH, LDN, CNS

The first thing you probably thought when you read the title was, is she crazy? How could she even begin to tackle the enormous, multi-layered issue that is pain? Well, it is not as multi-layered as one might think, because in many ways, your level of pain can be equated with your diet. Types of pain such as pelvic, neurologic, digestive, spinal, muscoskeletal, nerve, and urinary tract are often the result of a diet-induced, pro-inflammatory state. Of course, most of the medical community does not look at diet and nutrient deficiencies as being factors in creating pain. My experience with clients shows otherwise.

I have used the following analogy time and time again over my twenty-year career, and it never gets outdated. Human beings are like cars. If you give us the right fuel, we will perform optimally. If we are not given the right fuel, we will break down, and many negative by-products of the breakdown will hurt us along the way.

Many of you have localized pain. Others have pain in multiple areas. Some have chronic pain. Others have variable pain. The complexity of pain is enormous. Yet, I wish to keep pain management for you a simple as possible.

Many of you spend thousands of dollars per year to manage pain. Much of that money goes towards treating symptoms, or the “band-aid approach.” Very little research money is allocated to search the cause(s) of pain. A Centers for Disease Control study released in October, 2004 found that dietary approaches for pain-inducing disease, such as arthritis, was only behind homeopathy as the least explored complementary therapy for treatment.

How much will your pain be reduced if you heed my suggestions? I cannot guarantee a percentage because some have pain caused by damage that cannot be completely repaired. Some are on medications that induce pain as a side effect. Because pain affects us so differently, some of you will not see results overnight. Some have deep-seeded emotional attachment to pain, for which it may take a period of time for your brain chemistry to compensate for less pain. Some have been in a chronic inflammatory state for so long that it will take a while for your body to calm down. For others, eliminating specific pain trigger foods may feel relief much sooner.

The dangerous side effects of many pain relief drugs are making them less and less desirable. We are in an era where skepticism of the Food and Drug Administration’s ability to assess drug safety is at an all-time high. We are questioning the motivation behind the creation of certain drugs. Drug makers and certain branches of government are questioning their own abilities to monitor drug safety ( 5/5/2005). The Pain Relief Diet is safe and may not only bring relief, but may also pinpoint the cause(s).

We suggest following the Pain Relief Diet strictly for two weeks (some will want to stay on it longer) to determine how much pain can be reduced with diet and nutrients. It is not meant to be long-term because it is restrictive. If your pain is minimized or gone after two weeks, adding back foods slowly will probably allow you to pinpoint your own trigger(s).

Common Pain Triggers                                                            
The Diet                                                                        
Suggested Menu
Food & Shopping List
After 2 Weeks on the Diet, Now What Do I Do?
Nutrients for Pain Management
Other Preventive Approaches for Pain Management
Pain Research Tidbits

Purchase The Pain Relief Diet for $6.95
(in pdf-format only)

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