Bumps and bruises are a fact of life! Many of us accidently walk into things, fall off our bikes, trip while walking, or do something that will inevitably leave a bruise. A bruise occurs when the tissues underlying the skin become injured. This skin isn’t broken, but the capillaries below our skin’s surface rupture, causing blood to drain into the surrounding areas. This blood seeps into the layers of the skin and result in pain, swelling, and that “black-and-blue” mark. Fortunately, there are many natural ways to help bruises and prevent them from happening.
- An ointment can be made by adding one part cayenne pepper to five parts melted Vaseline. Apply this to the bruise (after it has cooled) once a day for about two days. Oil of oregano has also been useful in helping to heal bruises.
- Fresh parsley leaves that have been crushed and applied directly to the bruise have been known to ease the discoloration of the skin in a few days.
- Eating an abundance of dark green vegetables, buckwheat, and fresh fruits can be very helpful. They are high in vitamin C and bioflavonoids which help prevent bruising. Studies show that people with vitamin C deficiencies bruise more easily than others.
- Dark leafy greens such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, kale, and spinach are good sources of vitamin K which is important for blood clotting and healing.
- It has been shown that taking aspirin or ibuprofen for the pain can actually worsen the discoloration due to their blood-thinning qualities.
- Eating plenty of foods that are rich in zinc has been shown to aid with blood clotting. Chicken, eggs, soybeans, and wheat germs are good sources of zinc.
- Alfalfa supplies beneficial minerals and vitamin K which is helpful for healing.
Balch, P. A (2006). Prescription for Nutritional Healing. New York, NY: Penguin Group