Top 6 Natural Alternatives To Ibuprofen

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Top 6 Natural Alternatives To Ibuprofen
Top 6 Natural Alternatives To Ibuprofen. Graphic © Photo © AdobeStock 30255435 (under license)

Ibuprofen is a type of “non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug” (NSAID) that is in wide use as a painkiller. It has been demonstrated to be effective at pain removal, however there is the possibility of some serious side effects, including internal bleeding and heart problems such as higher risk of heart attacks or stroke.

Despite this, ibuprofen remains one of the most popular painkillers in the market and continues to be sold in most drugstores, grocery stores, and convenience stores throughout the world. [1]

The risk of this varies depending on the amount used and from person to person. But I had a personal experience with Ibuprofen, not so long ago, where I only took ONE and the following morning there was blood. It did seem a mighty strange coincidence that the one time I took Ibuprofen in years just so happened to be several hours before the one time in years I passed blood. Now your mileage may vary and I cannot of course make medicinal recommendations of any kind – but it was “game over” for me. I have no intention of ever taking it again. Anyway I hope that’s not “too much information”.

#1 – White Willow Bark

With the scientific name Salix alba, white willow is a plant used for the extracts from its bark. Historically, white willow has been widely used to manage a variety of conditions because of its anti-inflammatory, anti-pyretic, and analgesic properties. In modern times, it is an excellent natural alternative to manage headaches, chronic lower back pain, joint pain, and osteoarthritis. Though more research is needed, willow bark is also promising in dealing with menstrual cramps, fever, flu, inflammation of the tendons, and even pain caused by cancer. [2][3]

#2 – Chili Pepper

Chili pepper is a pretty unusual method of managing pain. Its spicy flavor and inherent heat make it a favorite in cooking but did you know that it also has potent analgesic properties. Capsaicin, the active component of hot peppers has been used in topically-applied creams since the 1980s to manage pain. In recent times, the EU and USA has approved the use of a capsaicin patch, which has been shown to manage neuropathic pain effectively, compared to pain medications. A single 60-minute application of the Qutenza™ patch was able to prove pain relief for up to twelve weeks in patients experiencing neuropathic pain. The capsaicin patch does this by desentisizing pain receptors, reducing pain effectively and immediately for a prolonged period of time. [4]

#3 – Boswellia

Boswellia is a tree famous for its fragrant resin which has therapeutic effects in the management of pain. Studies have shown how variants of Boswellia extract can rapidly alleviate pain as well as be able to manage chronic pain caused by osteoarthritis. In the case of people affected by arthritis, Boswellia was able to improve pain, mobility, and joint flexion after eight weeks of treatment. [5][6]

#4 – Cat’s Claw

Cat’s claw is a popular treatment method for osteoarthritis. It has potent anti-inflammatory properties that help alleviate the swelling in the joints. Because of this, cat’s claw is able to greatly reduce pain, improve mobility, and prevent further damage to the affected joints – all within the first week of treatment. [7]

#5 – Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3 fatty acids can be found in numerous fresh fish like salmon and tuna, as well as vegetables like brussel sprouts and kale. This kind of food is known as “good for the heart” because it promotes cardiovascular health and decreases a person’s risk for hypertension, heart attack, and stroke. All this is because of omega-3’s potent anti-inflammatory properties, which can concurrently also reduce pain in cases. In a study in 2015, omega-3 fatty acids were seen to reduce pain alone or in conjunction with morphine. [8]

#6 – Curcumin

Curcumin is a primary component of the herb turmeric, which also displays potent analgesic characteristics. In two studies published in 2011 and 2011, the effectiveness of curcumin was seen in cases of neuropathic pain and post-operative pain after laparascopic cholecystectomy. By the third post-operative week, test subjects included in the latter study were completely pain free. Another study even revealed how curcumin was able to alleviate the worst kind of pain – pain caused by burns – because of its strong anti-inflammatory characteristics. [9][10][11]

Further Reading:

Note that we also have some other pages on natural pain remedies, here are two:

Top 20 Natural Painkillers In Your Kitchen

Top 10 Anti-Inflammatory Herbs

Here’s to finding a pain-free life!


[1] US National Library of Medicine. Ibuprofen.

[2] University of Maryland Medical Center. Willow bark.

[3] Shara, M. & Stohs, S. (2015). Efficacy and Safety of White Willow Bark (Salix alba) Extracts.

[4] Anand, P. & Bley, K. (2011). Topical capsaicin for pain management: therapeutic potential and mechanisms of action of the new high-concentration capsaicin 8% patch.

[5] Sharma, A., et. al. (2010). Anti-inflammatory and analgesic activity of different fractions of Boswellia serrata.

[6] Kimmatkar, N., et. al. (2003). Efficacy and tolerability of Boswellia serrata extract in treatment of osteoarthritis of knee – A randomized double blind placebo controlled trial.

[7] Piscoya, J., et. al. (2001). Efficacy and safety of freeze-dried cat’s claw in osteoarthritis of the knee: mechanisms of action of the species Uncaria guianensis.

[8] Escudero, G., et. al. (2015). Analgesia enhancement and prevention of tolerance to morphine: beneficial effects of combined therapy with omega-3 fatty acids.

[9] Zhao, X., et. al. (2012). Curcumin exerts antinociceptive effects in a mouse model of neuropathic pain: Descending monoamine system and opioid receptors are differentially involved.

[10] Agarwal, K., et. al. (2011). Efficacy of turmeric (curcumin) in pain and postoperative fatigue after laparoscopic cholecystectomy: a double-blind, randomized placebo-controlled trial.

[11] Cheppudira, B., et. al. (2013). Curcumin: a novel therapeutic for burn pain and wound healing.

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The #1 Muscle That Eliminates Joint And Back Pain, Anxiety And Looking Fat

By Mike Westerdal CPT

Can you guess which muscle in your body is the #1 muscle that eliminates joint and back pain, anxiety and looking fat?

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11 thoughts on “Top 6 Natural Alternatives To Ibuprofen

  1. Im interested in all home remedies I can find. I had my thyroid removed in May and it was cancerous. My left side of the neck now has cancer and I wont know until Feb 2014 if has been eliminated or if surgery will be taking place again.I was given a radiation pill and the waiting period is 6 months.

  2. Does any one here have proven IBM remedies? ? I have friends who are suffering and I need to get them help!

  3. I used oranges to clean my face and let it dry for a few minutes. It was amazing ….my skin was so smooth and tightening and helps to removed some of my wrinkles.

  4. What are effective Joint/headache pain healing properties known natural alternative ?

  5. I have a bulging disc due to disintegration of the lumbar/sacral vertebra. I have found that boswellia and turmeric is amazing for the nerve pain and also the pains with fibromyalgia. It is also good for asthma.

  6. I have severe Asthma and Ibuprofen, could kill me. I’ve been in the hospital countless times because I took one and had a prolonged asthma attack. It took over 6 months for a doctor to tell me that could be causing it. Now it happens with any pain killer. So now when I’m in pain there’s nothing to do but wait it out. So I definitely want to learn about natural ways to help with it!

  7. I had a bleeding ulcer and after several transfusions was told I could never take commercial pain killers again. Unfortunately, I also get a lot of sinus pressure and/or headaches. I steep crushed red pepper and water into a tea and then sip it. Tastes terrible but gives me relief nearly all the time

  8. Ibuprofen reduced my soreness/leg cramps/fatigue since 1992,age 35,when I restarted physical fitness:basketball/tennis/weights/hiking.Now @56,& doing 400 m hurdles@ senior olympics while taking 200 mg pill before activity,w no side effects.No ibuprofen,no can do!Why me?

  9. I have the Great appreciation ; yeoman Service to Humanity !
    Thank you very much !

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