How antioxidants uncover a surprising solution to women’s low back pain

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antioxidants-may-reduce-low-back-pain(NaturalHealth365)  Did you know that according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 39% of adults experience back pain?  Lower back pain is especially common.  This type of pain, often termed lumbar pain, can significantly impair daily activities.

While backrests attached to chairs and stretching routines are helpful, there are additional, perhaps surprising, solutions to explore.  A recent study in BMC Public Health sheds light on the significant link between increased antioxidant intake and a diminished risk of backaches in women.

Can antioxidants be the key to easing lower back pain?

The referenced study, involving 17,682 individuals, demonstrated the effectiveness of antioxidant consumption in reducing low back pain.  This investigation, utilizing data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey in the United States, included 11,573 participants experiencing lower back pain and 6,109 reporting no such pain.

Researchers found that people with higher antioxidant dietary intake were about 11.7% less likely to experience low back pain compared to those with lower amounts.  This trend was significant, meaning it wasn’t likely due to chance.

When looking specifically at gender, the connection between higher antioxidant intake and lower likelihood of low back pain was significant for females.  Women with higher intake were almost 20% less likely to have low back pain than those with lower scores.

Additionally, the study discovered that changes in the levels of zinc and selenium in the body were independently associated with low back pain.  An increase in zinc levels was linked to a higher likelihood of low back pain, while an increase in selenium levels was linked to a lower likelihood of experiencing low back pain.

Antioxidants may shield against pain and potential cancer risks

Antioxidants play a pivotal role in reducing the risk of pain and even lowering the likelihood of cancer, primarily by putting the brakes on the oxidation process.  Oxidation is the culprit behind the generation of free radical substances notorious for triggering cellular damage.  What’s more, antioxidants may also contribute to the reduction of specific types of cellular damage.

As the body metabolizes oxygen, it produces free radicals that pose a threat to cells and the very foundation of human life, DNA.  The consumption of antioxidant-rich foods enhances the body’s ability to combat these free radicals, effectively preventing widespread cellular damage.

Unlock the antioxidant power in everyday foods

Pain- and cancer-fighting antioxidants are in more foods than most assume.  When looking for ways to increase your antioxidant intake, don’t limit yourself to the usual blueberry narrative.  Everyday foods are brimming with potent compounds that can supercharge your antioxidant intake.

Among fruits, think strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, pomegranates, cranberries, plums, and cherries.  Vegetables bring their antioxidant game with options like eggplants, broccoli, red peppers, tomatoes, carrots, sweet potatoes, and winter squash.

Digging deeper into your spice cabinet, cinnamon steals the show as an antioxidant powerhouse.  Sprinkle it on oatmeal or cereal for a tastier and healthier start.  Salad lovers can add seeds or nuts for an antioxidant boost, while meat enthusiasts can spice up steaks and burgers with chili powder.  Naturally, all of these food suggestions should be organic, as often as possible to avoid unwanted chemicals.

But boosting your antioxidant intake isn’t just about diversifying your palate; it’s about simple changes in your daily habits.  For instance, opt for a colorful plate approach by incorporating a variety of fruits and vegetables and choose cooking methods that retain antioxidant benefits – think light steaming or boiling, instead of baking or frying.

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