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Curcumin Supplement May Ease Pain as Well as Standard Pain Medication

Rugby players are at risk of injury and chronic pain, due to the violent nature of the sport. A recent study suggests that taking a curcumin supplement may help reduce pain and increase physical function in rugby players who have sustained an injury.


Participants in the study included 50 male rugby players who suffered from osteomuscular discomfort as a result of repeated tackles, overload, or chronic pain. The participants underwent one of five interventions:




    1. 1 gram of the curcumin supplement every 12 hours for five days;

    1. 1 gram of the curcumin supplement every 12 hours for 10 days;

    1. standard pain medication for three days;

    1. standard pain medication for five days or;

    1. standard pain medication for 10 days.


The researchers used the Visual Analog Scale to assess pain perception and a 0-10 scale (with 0 equal to complete function and 10 equal to full impairment) to determine physical function. All of the participants were monitored for 20 days following the supplementation period.


The researchers noted significant improvements in pain perception and physical function in both groups at various points during the follow-up period. However, while the results for curcumin and pain medication were similar, the supplement group had better tolerability. Only 4% in the supplement group reported adverse effects in the form of gastric pain, compared with 16% of the standard treatment group.


Researchers from Valleja Research in Italy conducted the study. It was published in the November 2017 issue of the European Review for Medical and Pharmacological Sciences.


Curcumin is present in turmeric but if you’re looking to get truly beneficial levels, it’s best to take it in supplement form.

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