The Optimal You Mantra for 2017: No Pain, Much Gain

Take this oath: First, do no harm…to yourself

When your arthritis is causing your joints to howl in pain, ice and heat can be effective in the short-term, and soothing unguents, ointments and nostrums also might make you feel slightly better (and clear your nose with all that menthol). But maybe, when those techniques don’t work — or maybe because it’s just so much easier -– you reach for your favorite NSAID.

Of course, you’re probably not thinking, “Gee, why don’t I take one or two non-steroidal-anti-inflammatory drugs?” You’re thinking, “Let me at the Aleve or the Bufferin, the Bayer, St. Joseph’s, Ecotrin, or the Motrin or Advil”. You swallow as many as you’re supposed to, or what’s s been written for you in the endlessly refillable prescription you’ve got on file. And you’re grateful for the eventual pain relief, even while you’re also blissfully unaware of what is really happening to your body — specifically your heart — with every dose.

As a sports medicine doctor, I deal with pain all day — my patients come to me in varying degrees of misery, looking for relief, any kind of relief. And so they’re inevitably surprised when I tell them that the next time they feel the pain, to take a deep breath — and don’t reach for those meds.

NSAIDs are bad for you. They’re bad for your heart. They actually cause heart disease, by raising blood pressure. I know this from personal experience: my grandmother died from a reckless physician who prescribed anti-inflammatory drugs.

For a diabetic, NSAIDs are disastrous and can result in major kidney damage. I had a diabetic patient whose general doctor prescribed him a regimen of 500 mg twice daily of Naprosyn, with constant refills. My patient ended up on dialysis for life. 20,000 people die every year in the United States from peptic ulcers due to their intake of NSAIDs.

But no one wants to live with, or in, pain. So what are the alternatives? Luckily, there are several different, healthy ways to manage or even reduce the pain from arthritis without resorting to drugs that are easily obtainable but deadly.

The death of my grandmother from overuse of prescription of NSAIDs, and the complications such as heart disease or ulcers that NSAID usage can cause inspired me to seek out a remedy that honors the vow all doctors take: First, do no harm. With my research team in Boston, we combined the venerable wisdom of the East with the cutting edge scientific knowledge of the West and successfully accomplished an extract of the ancient root turmeric, known as curcumin. Although the ancient remedy formula was not absorbable, my team solved this by marrying the extract to western science and making it highly absorbable and effective for managing arthritis. We named this new potent invention –a medical food designed to be used under physician supervision– Vonacor.

Unlike NSAIDs, the side effects of curcumin are minor; only ten percent of people get some GI discomfort. Otherwise, there are promisingly positive side effects, including the possibility of preventing heart disease, Alzheimer’s, and colon cancer. Curcumin has been shown to be equivalent to ibuprofen in clinical trials without risks associated with ibuprofen.

I’m excited about this new technology. To reduce the dangers of NSAIDs — drugs whose ill effects are just now being discussed publicly — has been a lifelong ambition of mine. Using this in conjunction with other wholly practical and easy-to-take steps (to be outlined in future posts) will, I believe, transform the lives of arthritis sufferers.

For more information about Vonacor, visit:

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