A look at the science behind copper’s healing abilities

We’ve been using copper to treat pain and inflammation since prehistoric times. Our ancestors didn’t know how it worked – they just knew that it did. Science has yet to definitively explain why the topical application of copper acts as an anti-inflammatory, but we have a much deeper understanding.

What we know that copper is a trace metal, and it’s vital for multiple body functions. We can’t synthesize it, so our copper requirements have to come from external sources like sesame seeds and leafy green vegetables such as spinach and turnip greens. Copper can also be absorbed through the skin – and this is the most effective way to benefit from its anti-inflammatory qualities.

Inflammation – the good news

Inflammation happens when body tissues are injured. Our body responds to the injury by producing chemicals called prostaglandins. It might sound like we don’t want prostaglandins, but they’re also beneficial. Prostaglandins, for example, protect the intestines and stomach from being damaged by acid.

In a perfect world, we want to find a way to reduce the production of prostaglandins at the source of muscle soreness or joint pain, and not interfere with the beneficial prostaglandin production happening throughout the rest of the body, which can happen when pills are ingested. That is how a roll-on pain reliever that contains copper can help.

How copper helps

According to Dr. Sarah Brewer, who writes for The Telegraph in the United Kingdom, up to 70 percent of the copper we ingest from our daily diet is not absorbed. Trace amounts of copper, however, are easily absorbed by the skin. Dr. Brewer cites a study of 240 people who wore copper bracelets to combat pain and inflammation caused by rheumatoid arthritis. The copper bracelets they wore each lost an average of 13 milligrams of copper throughout the study.

Too much copper is toxic. Topical application is a safer way to receive copper’s benefits because absorbing copper through the skin allows us to receive copper peptides, proteins that deliver this trace metal at levels that are not hazardous. Copper peptides have been shown to have both anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties.

Copper in topical pain relievers

Adding copper to roll-on pain relievers and topical creams boost the benefits of their ability to soothe pain by reducing inflammation. Counterirritants such as menthol and camphor work on pain gates located in the spine, which are responsible for passing on physical sensations to the brain. When applied to sore muscles or joints, the sensations caused by menthol or camphor override the pain gates and get passed on to the brain, instead. The result can be felt in a matter of minutes.

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) taken as a pill do not offer the same speed or relief. They can take hours to work because your body has to digest the pills and absorb it into your bloodstream first.

That’s the top benefit of using a topical pain reliever and anti-inflammatory. You put it where you want it. You’re also applying copper where it can reward injured tissue with its powerful capabilities, which include reducing free radicals, collagen and melanin formation, and even the proper absorption of iron.

Topical applications also allow you to use this method of pain relief more frequently and for longer periods of time without serious health concerns. The Cleveland Clinic warns that you should never use NSAIDs continuously without first talking to a medical professional. In 2015, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) added new warnings about taking NSAIDs, saying it can increase the chance of heart attack or stroke.

CopperGel is clinically proven to relieve joint, muscle, and arthritis pain. Plus, this roll-on lets you focus on just the areas that hurt. Questions or concerns? Please get in touch. You can send an email to support@coppergel.com or just fill out our online contact form.