Curry Spice for Tendinitis Pain

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The global incidence of tendinitis is increasing as the population ages. Patients with rheumatoid arthritis or metabolic diseases such as diabetes are at increased risk of having tendinitis. 

Tendinitis is a form of tendon inflammation that causes pain and tenderness close to the joints, and it is particularly common in the shoulders, elbows, knees, hips, heels, and wrists.  Tennis elbow, golfer’s elbow, and Achilles tendon injury are all examples of common tendon disease. 

If you have tendinitis, you might like to consider eating curry for lunch or dinner next time.  A new study published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry indicated that curcumin, which gives the curry spice turmeric its bright yellow color, could be helpful in reducing the inflammation and the pain associated with tendinitis and arthritis. 

Turmeric has been used for centuries in traditional Indian medicine as an anti-inflammatory agent and as a remedy to treat irritable bowel syndrome. 

The main purpose of the study was to evaluate whether that curcumin had any effects on the inflammatory and degenerative properties induced by molecules called interleukins. 

The results showed that curcumin did prevent interleukins from promoting inflammation. 

Current treatment for tendinitis pain and inflammation include nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS), such as aspirin or ibuprofen. 

 In more serious cases of tendon injury, steroid injections can be given directly into the tendon sheath to control pain and enable physiotherapy to start. 

However, NSAIDS and steroids are associated with side effects, such as stomach ulcers and GI upsets. 

Source: Journal of Biological Chemistry, 2011 

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