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Q & A Session on Pain Relief with Dr. Michele Burklund, NMD - Blog Puriya

March 22, 2019

In this Q & A session, Dr. Michele Burklund, Chief Science Officer at Puriya, talks about pain relief! The questions in this session include…

1. Does this cream reduce inflammation?
2. Are there any lifestyle changes you advise to help with chronic pain?
3. Does this cream give a cooling or warming sensation?
4. Can this cream help relieve my arthritis pain?
5. Are there foods I can eat that will reduce my inflammation?
6. Will this cream help with muscle soreness?
7. How does the ultra relief cream work?
8. Can this cream help with nerve pain?

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Right below, you will find the transcript of this video.


(00:01) – Hi everyone. Welcome and good morning. Now, I’m Dr. Michele Burklund, I’m the chief science officer here at Puriya, where we design plant-based remedies that give proven results. And so, most of my job role has to do with writing the educational material, formulating amazing botanical remedies, and doing a lot of the research. But I’m also going to be here with you once a week, answering your questions. And so, last week, we had an amazing turnout, and great questions asked about eczema. And this week, we’re going to be talking about pain relief. So we will announce it ahead of time, if the subject pertains to you, then join in. And always, if you have more questions, feel free to write them down in the comment box, and we’ll consider them for our next Facebook live session. But we don’t have that time to answer the questions live, so I gather as many questions as I can, kinda during the week, and then I’ll answer them here live with you, Fridays at 10 in the morning, Pacific Standard Time.

(01:11) – But we won’t have time to answer the comments that you put on today, on this Facebook Live. But we will consider them for the next ones. And also, while I’m waiting for more of you guys to join, you can always subscribe to our newsletter, there’s a link in the description above the video, for you to get announcements of what’s going on at the company, great information and health tips, any events that we’re having, and of course, a reminder of our question and answer sessions here every Friday. And don’t forget, you can always follow me on Facebook as well to get the notification of our next live session

(01:56) – So this week, we are going to be talking about pain and we could pretty much to talk about pain for months, so I’m trying to narrow it down and answer some really good questions this week, and I’m sure we’re gonna have more questions in the following months too. So I’m going to start with the first question, which is great. It is: Does this cream reduce inflammation? And we are talking about our Ultra Relief Cream, here at Puriya. And does it relieve inflammation? So when we formulate different products, we think of the mechanisms of action we wanna focus on. And for pain relief, inflammation is a big cause of many different pains. So we’ve chosen different herbs, different botanicals inside the formulation to target exactly that mechanism and to decrease the inflammation. Chamomile, one of my favorite plants. We have Chamomile flower extract in there and it’s shown to have anti-inflammatory actions. It’s been used for over five thousand years in traditional medicine for exactly that. And there’s a lot of great clinical studies that show its potential anti-inflammatory effects as well.

(03:18) – In our formula, we also have lemon grass essential oil, which has been shown to reduce inflammation when applied topically. And we also have something called MSN. It’s a plant-based substance that’s a compound and it’s formed… I have to look at the two… It’s a chemical reaction through dimethyl sulfoxide and hydrogen peroxide. And it occurs naturally. It’s a naturally occurring element. And what it’s been found to do is actually drive other ingredients deeper into the skin. So a good study published in the Journal of Drug Delivery found MSN to be an effective compound at permeating deep into the skin and serving as a medium to deliver other compounds. So we use it for two reasons. We use it to bring in the chamomile, the lemon grass, all of our amazing botanicals to drive it deeper into the skin, where the inflammatory response is occurring. And also, it’s been shown to have anti-inflammatory effects itself.

(04:28) – So, let me see if I answered that question. Also, I wanted to mention that there’s been some interesting studies with chamomile flower extract, and it’s been shown to actually block the COX-2 pathway, which is an inflammatory pathway that a lot of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines block as well. So let’s not forget chamomile and all the amazing actions it has. Okay. So don’t forget you can write your comments down below, of any questions you have and we’re consider them for our future Facebook Live sessions. And for all of you guys that just joining in, don’t forget to sign up for our newsletter. The link is in the description.

(05:22) – Okay. Next question: Are there any lifestyle changes you advise to help with chronic pain? As a naturopathic doctor, this is one of my favorite questions because not only do we like to address these symptoms in easier comfort, but we wanna find the root cost. And a lot of that has to do with lifestyle issues and food choices, exercises, different stretching and support. So food, we’re actually gonna discuss a little later, because we can go into a lot about how diet plays a role in inflammation and how inflammation is related to pain. But let’s talk a little bit about what makes chronic pain worse. We know stress does. We know smoking does. We know highly processed foods can contribute to it, and it all kind of contributes to that underlying inflammatory process. And also, over exertion, whether it’s through exercise or even emotionally, so lots of different ways that you can exacerbate the chronic pain

(06:37) – So, very few people know this… But there’s actually 19,000 studies out there on meditation and how profound the mind-body connection actually is, and I just think that it’s such a large number of different studies that have shown you know different stress relieving techniques can help improve your mood or a different stress relieving techniques like going out in nature, other things can help your immune system and decrease your stress. And so even though it’s such a simple thing, something as easy as doing 10 minutes of meditation a day or taking a short walk out in nature and doing something to just kind of calm down and take a deep breaths can surprisingly have profound effects on your health

(07:30) – It’s hard to… I know when people have a busy schedule, and they’re like, “Oh I can’t take this time, how am I gonna fit it in”? But if you just carve out a little piece, even if it’s part of your morning ritual or something, it’ll make a big difference over time. And there’s a lot of clinical evidence out there that proves that as well. And I also wanna talk about how mood affects the level of pain too. A lot of people who suffer from depression or anxiety have an increased perception of pain. They have, they notice that it’s more severe, a lot of trials have shown. And so, once again, it has to do with finding time for yourself. And also finding that balance within an understanding how deeply they are connected. And here at Puriya we really wanna focus on the whole person and so we have our Ultra Relief Cream which is great. And we also wanna help you in any other areas anyway we can too or teach you different lifestyle techniques.

(08:36) – There is also different movements you can do for chronic pain qigong. There’s been a lot of studies on that. And how the light movements can help balance the energy within the body, and also it’s not a weight bearing exercise, it doesn’t put pressure on the joints, so it’s a great way to get your body moving, while reducing that stress as well. There’s also the classic RICE method, which is rest, ice, compression and elevation. If you are having chronic pain there’s always a trigger release therapy as well. Trigger points and always stretch before and after engaging in a lot of physical activity because it does make a difference. And I also wanna talk about shoes because shoes can lead to chronic pain as well, and I think it’s very important to wear comfortable shoes. Because it has a huge effect on our posture and can contribute to chronic pain long-term if you wear shoes that aren’t comfortable, or too high that crowd your feet that can really change the posture and change your body. So think about that as well.

(10:03) – Okay, let’s move on to the next question. And for those of you joining us right now, I just want to remind you that if you do have any questions or comments, feel free to write them below and we will consider answering them for the next Facebook sessions, but we will not have time to answer them today.

(10:24) – This is a great question, it is, “Does this cream give a cooling or warming sensation”? And our Ultra Relief Cream gives a cooling sensation. So, without getting too scientific here, there is a different ways that you can decrease the pain sensation through capsaicin or camphor which is different mechanisms or menthol and menthol actually affects the pathway called TRPM8 and it’s a thermo-sensitive neuron channel. And so what happens is, you feel this cooling affect from it because it’s activated and that goes on later down the pathway and inhibits the neurons that are going to be sending the pain signals to your brain. So you interpret it as this nice cooling feeling, but what’s actually going on too is the pathway that your body normally takes to tell your body that there’s a lot of pain going on is decreasing. So what you are feeling that the amount of pain is reduced. And we chose menthol, for a lot of different reasons, there’s some great clinical trials to talk about menthol for arthritis pain and other things and I’ll go into them in just a second.

(11:48) – But menthol also has some interesting effects on the mind and body that capsaicin and camphor didn’t and it had to do with the calming effects when people smell menthol, it changed their mood and it improved anxiety as well, so we looked at it in kinda two different ways as physically helping block that pain pathway in decreasing the pain, and then also as a soothing element as well. And for those of you who don’t know, menthol is derived from a type of mint. It’s derived from a mint oil and of course it’s plant-based. So I wanted to talk about some trials about menthol. The journal of Rehabilitation Research and Practice found that the topical application of menthol is an effective treatment to reduce symptoms of pain intensity caused from carpal tunnel. And a lot of people suffer from carpal tunnel. I’m using my computer right now. And it’s very important of course for positioning. But menthol has been shown to be effective in that as well. Another study from the International Journal of Sports Physical Therapy compared the topical application of menthol to ice and found that menthol to be more effective.

(13:17) – And then one more study and then we move on. Talks about how menthol was very effective in osteoarthritis compared to different other topical remedies as well as the placebo, it found menthol gel to be the most effective in the comparison. So we like adding menthol for a variety of reasons, and getting to the original question, “Is it cooling or warming?” Yes, ours is cooling, and that maybe will help clarify as to why we chose the cooling properties of menthol.

(14:03) – Okay, moving on to the next question: Can this cream help relieve my arthritis pain? Yes. Now, arthritis is a surprisingly complex condition because there’s over 100 different types. The most common types are osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, and fibromyalgia, but there’s over 100 different types. And so the common symptoms of arthritis, whichever type you may have, is typically joint pain, reduced range of motion, joint stiffness, swollen joints, and there can be redness as well. So how we formulated the Ultra Relief Cream, was more on addressing those mechanisms of inflammation and pain relief, rather than focusing, trying to focus on a specific arthritic pain. Because it’s a very different, whether it can be an autoimmune issue, it can be overuse issue. So, our goal was to focus on the mechanisms that all the different types of arthritic conditions had in common.

(15:25) – So we had, what I discussed earlier, chamomile flower extracts, which has a lot of great anti-inflammatory actions. We have lavender essential oil, which has been shown to reduce pain intensity as well, and lemongrass essential oil, and let’s not forget menthol and MSM, what I spoke about. And then we have some great supportive remedies as well, like vitamins C, which can help support collagen production… Sorry, cartilage production and collagen production, that’s a different subject. Vitamin E is a potent antioxidant mixed in the cream, and also very nourishing. So it’s a great formulation all around with a lot of different mechanisms to kind of address what’s going on with the pain and reducing that inflammation.

(16:21) – Okay, I’m excited about this question to answer: Are there any foods I could eat, that will reduce inflammation? Yes, there are so many different studies that talk about foods that can cause inflammation, and then there’s also a food allergies which we won’t go into today, but could also cause inflammation if you have some sort of sensitivities. What I wanted to talk about is one of the most studied diets today, and that is the Mediterranean diet. And so I’ve actually lived in Greece the last couple of years, and have been able to witness the effect of the Mediterranean diet myself. So the Mediterranean diet consist mainly of fruits and vegetables, fish and nuts, and it’s very much based on the earth and what’s a local to the area, and let’s not forget olive oil as well. So I’ve seen the Mediterranean diet and I’ve seen living in Greece, so many farmers that are in their 90s still going out everyday to work on their farm that eat amazing fruit and vegetables, and fish, and have this beautiful organic diet, with lots of olive oil, and it works. And seeing it not only in research, but in real life you can really understand the power of it.

(17:49) – So I wanted to talk about a very interesting study, about the Mediterranean diet too, and it’s published in the Journal of American College of Cardiology, and it followed over 3000 men and women, who ate the Mediterranean diet for one year. So three thousand people, they tracked eating mainly fruits and vegetables and fish, and nuts, and they found that after that year on average, of that 3000 people, they had a 20% lower CRP. And CRP stands for C-Reactive Protein, it’s an inflammatory marker that we can track in our blood. And so these people who ate that diet on average, had 20% lower inflammation from that marker. And they also had a 15%, so this is the average of all of them. They had a 15% lower levels of homocysteine and also 17% lower of IL-6, Interleukin-6, and both of those are related to inflammation as well. So I just thought that was incredibly impressive that this huge study followed so many people and was able to show those profound effects. So yes, I will say that there’s a lot of ways you can eat to reduce inflammation, and overall it’s to eat whole foods, more fruits and vegetables and omega3 is in the Mediterranean diet it’s rich from fish oils and also lots of olive oil.

(19:30) – Okay. So I’m gonna move on to the next question here. Will this cream help with muscle soreness? So we have different herbs in there that are focused soothing the muscle. So I wanted to talk about lemongrass essential oil for this one. And lemongrass essential oil is derived from the leaves through steam distillation. And in traditional medicine, it’s been used for stomach aches, for anxiety, for headaches, and also muscle pain. And a study even showed that it’s very powerful at relieving muscle cramps. So we use it along with a lot of the other ingredients I’ve already spoke about to soothe the muscles and also decrease that pain. So then the question is, the muscle soreness, as a naturopathic doctor, I would always want to go into recommending stretching, never over exertion, listen to your body, and listen to where you’re at, so you don’t necessarily have to feel too sore afterwards. And this is a good time to look at your diet and see if you’re eating a lot of highly processed foods and noticing that you might feel more sore than normal. So lots of different variables in there. And I wanted to talk about lemongrass and specifically how it can help with muscle cramps and soreness. Okay. This is a good question. We’ve covered it kind of a lot already. How does the Ultra Relief Cream work? So we have several different ways.

(21:20) – It reduces the pain sensation through the cooling pathway with menthol. And then we also have a great variety of natural remedies and botanicals to decrease inflammation. So I will say kinda those two things together, is how it works and how it’s been so effective for our customers. Okay. This is my last question. And it is, can this cream help with my nerve pain? And, yes. Nerve pain, it depends. What our cream can do is help decrease the severity of the sensation. So it can help decrease the pain that you feel from it. We always recommend looking at what is causing the nerve pain, whether it’s an impingement, a structural issue, but yes, our pain relief cream can help decrease the amount of your pain you’re feeling from that nerve pain. And this is a great time to discuss lavender essential oil that it’s also in the pain relief cream. And it’s known as first aid in a bottle, lavender essential oil, because there’s so many great uses for this herb. And a great use for this herb in our Ultra Relief Cream is, first, the aromatherapy. There’s been trials that showed that just the inhalation of the essential oil helped decrease pain perception, in some studies, which I thought was interesting.

(23:06) – And then also the topical application of the essential oil can help soothe and ease the pain. So I thought that was great. And just talking about nerve pain and also just the menthol and the lavender and all these amazing herbs we have in our formulation, how they can help on many different levels, and how we strategically put them together to help with that. So our question and answer is coming to a close today. And I just wanna remind you again, don’t forget to sign up for our newsletter. The link in the description above. Or you can follow us here and you get alerted next time we have a Facebook session. So in the future, I’m also going to be doing interviews with other healthcare professionals and asking them questions. So be sure to follow us so you can be notified of our Facebook live sessions and all our great interviews to come. And if you have questions, send them in so we can address them in our next session. So I will see you next week Friday 10am Pacific Standard Time. Have a great week. Bye.

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