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What is tiger balm?

Let's talk a little bit about what tiger balm is

1 - History and uses of Tiger Balm

Tiger balm is an ointment with a totally natural composition, used since ancient times in traditional Chinese medicine.

The formula has not varied since its appearance until today, the base of this ointment is mainly menthol, camphor, and a mixture of essential oils (mint, eucalyptus, cajeput, clove ...).

This ointment was developed in 1870 in Burma by the herbalist Aw Chu Kin. This man worked for the Chinese Emperor's Court until he decided to emigrate to Rangoon and opened his own herbalist's shop. After his death, his children perfected the composition of ointment and began to commercialize it. With an antiquity of about 100 years this product that began to commercialize in century IX, acquired that name because it was realized using base of tiger fat. Currently it is not allowed to use, so this is replaced by vaseline and other oils as a base.

The use of this balm is indicated in migraines, nasal congestion, muscle and joint pain. Recommended for professional athletes, since it serves to prepare the muscles before starting to exercise them. It is also effective against insect bites.

2 - Tiger Balm Composition and its properties

Tiger balm is made entirely by natural ingredients. There are different types depending on which you need to relieve. Its composition varies from one to another to better suit your needs.

Below we will describe the components of this magnificent ointment, to understand its properties.

  • Camphor:

    Camphor is one of its componets and it acts by activating the peripheral nerves, has a vasodilator effect dilating the vessels of the skin, which produces a sensation of heat. It is also anti-inflammatory, analgesic and a stimulant of the respiratory system. As you may know there are tiger balm products that produce a sensation of cold and others a sensation of heat. Camphor is one of these elements of its composition used to cause heat when you put it on your skin, and penetrate through to your muscles. Go to this link if you want to buy Red Tiger Balm that will provide you with a heat feeling.
  • Menthol:

    Menthol is an alcohol that can be found in some mint species. It is a good natural remedy that possesses antiseptic, local analgesic, anti-inflammatory and antipruritic action. When applied on the skin appears a rubefaciente effect, this produces a sensation of cold when it passes a time that soon turns into local analgesia. So it works very well to eliminate itching in some dermatitis, hives and even works against insect bites along with other components that we will talk later. Another of the uses of menthol is for the relief of respiratory diseases that produce nasal congestion or excess mucus, applying it in the chest calm the sensation of axfisia improving breathing and purifying the airways.
  • Mint Essential Oil:

    It has anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects that help to calm muscle and joint pains. It is also expectorant, antispasmodic and antiseptic, which is recommended for respiratory problems that compromise proper breathing. Highly recommended for use in people who suffer from headaches, as applying a little ointment on the temples and on the forehead you will notice how it calms down in about 30 minutes. Peppermint essential oil, along with menthol and eucalyptus provide tiger balm with the characteristic refreshing effect that will eliminate your discomfort. Peppermint essential oil also acts as a repellent of spiders, mosquitoes and other insects. Another advantage of this oil is that it provides relief from stress, anxiety and depression, clears the mind and improves concentration.
  • Eucalyptus Essential Oil:

    Eucalyptus is a plant of Australian origin, from the leaves of this plant we can obtain the essential oil of eucalyptus with fantastic properties of medicinal use. This essential oil was used long ago by Australian aborigines to cure febrile processes among other things. Therefore, it helps the body to improve its general condition due to its natural properties: antiseptic, antimicrobial and analgesic, cleans the body of harmful toxins and microorganisms.
    The essential oil of ecualipto helps to increase the defenses of the organism, is a natural antiseptic for the infections of the airways. It calms the symptoms of flu and catarrhal processes. It relaxes and dilates the musculature of the respiratory system thus improving breathing. It also has other properties: it is antitussive, favors expectoration and is mucolytic.
    Recommended to improve muscle fatigue either by stress or by overload, for this is indicated tigerbalm with its content in eucalyptus can be applied by a massage in the areas of muscle fatigue.
  • Cajeput Essential Oil:

    This oil comes from an Indian tree. Its essence has antiseptic and also antibiotic properties. With rubefaciente action, causes the redness of the skin in a way that gives sensation of heat. Very effective in respiratory problems or respiratory infections. It also helps relieve colds and promotes sputum. It also has an insecticidal effect so it helps to repel insects.
  • Clove Essential Oil:

    It is a plant native to Indonesia, from which clove essential oil is extracted. This essential oil has multiple health benefits such as its antimicrobial properties, anti fungi, antiseptics, antivirals, among others. The essential oil of clove has many flavonoids, which are anti-inflammatory agents, thus when applied topically to the temples or the neck calms the tension and eliminates the inflammation produced by the headaches. In addition, by increasing blood circulation, it also reduces the tension in the vessels that is directly associated with tension headaches, which acts very well in tension headaches or migraine headaches. It has as I mentioned antimicrobial and antiviral properties, since the essential oil of clove is a stimulator of the immune system that will help us to combat infectious processes on all of respiratory origin, acts as an expectorant and promotes the cleaning of the nasal passages.
    Very useful for treating problems such as stress, depression and anxiety, besides being a mind stimulator eliminating fatigue and mental exhaustion. Natural insect repellent.
  • Chinese Cinnamon Essential oil:

    Chinese cinnamon is the eastern cinnamon variety, from southern China and Indochina, has a more intense aroma of traditional cinnamon. The essential oil of cinnamon is obtained by steam distillation of the leaves and twigs as the inner layer of the plant's dry bark. It has antiseptic properties that favor the control of infections, germs, fungi and a broad antibacterial spectrum. It acts as an anti-inflammatory, given its content in red tiger balm works very well to calm muscle inflammations and also to relieve inflammatory processes in diseases such as arthritis. This is one of the most characteristic components of tiger balm. The aroma of red tiger balm due to this component produces psycho-emotional well-being, bringing vigor and dynamism to the state of fatigue and apathy.

3 - What kind of pain can we use tiger balm for?

  • - Muscle aches:

    This ointment has been used for decades by Asian culture to treat this type of pain. Muscle aches can be related to a tension, overload or muscle injury, sometimes stress can also cause it. It may also be related to connective tissue diseases such as fibromyalgia, lupus ... or even infectious diseases such as influenza.

    What kind of balm should we choose?

    In this case, red tiger balm is the best choice for sports injuries. If the pain is due to diseases described above, red tiger balm will also be the most successful choice since producing heat effect will calm the discomfort.

  • joint-painless-tiger-balm
    - Joint pains:

    This type of pain can originate from injuries or from diseases such as arthritis, lupus where this pain is chronic. For this, it is advisable to make warm baths, massages and very important to perform stretching. Because tiger balm contains anti-inflammatory and analgesic ingredients, it is a great choice especially for chronic pain. In this way, you will not have to abuse drugs that harm the body, tiger balm is all natural.

    What kind of balm should we use to treat joint pains?

    There are two options depending on your needs. If you have a lot of swelling and warmth in the area, the white tiger balm produces a refreshing effect that will calm your discomfort. However, red tiger balm is best suited to soothe chronic joint and muscular pains, eliminates pain and improves inflammation.

  • - Nasal Congestion, Respiratory Problems or Cough:

    Nasal congestion occurs when the tissues lining the nose become swollen due to inflammation of the blood vessels thus compromising the airways and creating respiratory problems. These can be caused by multiple factors: a cold, flu, sinusitis, allergic rhinitis or chronic diseases of the respiratory system like COPD. In addition these diseases can be accompanied by cough. Tiger balm will help you clear that uncomfortable feeling of not being able to breathe properly and even help calm the cough produced by these disorders.

    What kind of balm should we choose?

    For nasal congestion the most advisable tiger balm is the white one, due to its components such as menthol or eucalyptus. When you apply it you will feel the airways clear and you can breathe better. A good way to use them would be to make steam with warm water and a little of this balm.

  • sport-best-warm-up-tiger-balm
    - Sport warm-up:

    Warm-up before sports is essential to perform well during training. It is important to prepare the muscles that we will need during exercise. This is important for all those who are going to perform a physical activity, but even more important for professional athletes or people who perform sports that require a lot of physical effort such as Crossfit.

    What kind of balm should we use to warm up?

    To make a good warm up of the muscles prior to the sport practice, the use of the red tiger balm is recommended. Its heat effect will prepare the muscles before the activity thus avoiding the fibrillar breaks, tears or muscular breaks and contractures. The use of this ointment does not exempt a warm up and start the activity in a gradual way.

  • - Foot pain:

    Are you one of those women who usually wear high-heeled shoes? There are many women today who wear high heels for work and for going out. Prolonged use of this footwear often causes pains that sometimes become chronic due to the unnatural posture of the foot during use. Support in the anterior plantar area causes pains that can eventually develop into chronic problems such as the Hallux Valgas, commonly known as "Bunion".

    Best Tiger Balm to use for Foot Pains?

    For this type of pain the balm of choice would be the Red Tiger Balm. Due to its anti-inflammatory and analgesic effect it will provide us with the relief we need. Applying it by a massage after a foot bath with warm water your foot pain will disappear

  • headache-migraine-tiger-balm
    - Headaches and migraines:

    Headaches are common and are usually produced by a tension in the muscles of the shoulders, neck and jaw. This is due to poor posture, stress, depression, anxiety ... among many other causes. We can also find migraine, this is accompanied by other symptoms such as nausea, alterations in vision and sensitivity to noise or light.

    Best Tiger Balm to use for Headaches and Migraines?

    If the pain is tension-type headache, the balm of choice is going to be the red one. Why? Due to its composition produces a heat effect and helps to improve the vascularization of the area, thus eliminating the congestion of the muscles of the neck and shoulders. Applying this balm with a massage in the areas of tension will calm the headache. If the pain is migraine, the best balm will be white. Due to its components (menthol and eucalyptus), it will produce a refreshing effect. If we apply it on the temples, behind the ears, front and neck will see how the pain disappears.

  • - Tired legs syndrome:

    This syndrome affects 20% -30% of the population, of which the majority are women. It is a vascular disease that begins with swelling and sensation of heaviness in the legs, muscle cramps, tiredness, tingling, itching, numbness of the legs especially at night and pain. It is a disease of vascular origin. It can be controlled by avoiding sedentary, overweight, obesity, wearing too tight clothing, although there are inevitable factors such as genetic predisposition.

    What Tiger Balm to use for Tired Legs Syndrome?

    For this the best tiger balm is the white one. Due to its composition that generates a cooling sensation the white tiger balm will calm the sensation of heavy legs. It is advisable to apply it by means of a massage that favors the venous return, as well as to maintain the elevated legs.

  • insect-bites-tiger-balm
    - Natural insect repellent:

    Due to the composition of white tiger balm with mint and cajeput essential oils, you will get a 100% natural insect repellent. You sting? Do not worry, it also acts to relieve the symptoms of bites and also because of the essential oil cajeput that has anti-bacterial properties will prevent them from becoming infected. All are advantages and the best all natural. :)

    Best Tiger Balm to use as Insect Repellent?

    No doubt the white tiger balm. As described above, its properties not only help repel insects but also relieve symptoms of bites.

  • - Back Pain:

    Do You Suffer From Back Pain? You are not the only one, 8 out of 10 people will suffer this ailment throughout their life at some point. The pain usually appears suddenly and lasts between several days or weeks, then we speak of acute pain. However, if this pain lasts longer than 3 months, we are talking about chronic pain. Its origin is very diverse, it can be produced by a muscle strain, a contracture or by joint problems. The most common pain is located in the lower back and its cause is usually due to exercises that are not accustomed to doing an overexertion or doing a load in poor posture.

    Best Tiger Balm to use for your your back pain?

    In acute pain is recommended the use of white tiger balm due to its cooling effect produces a quick relief of the area. Instead if we talk about chronic pain, it is recommended to use red tiger balm, with its anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties is the perfect product to eliminate pain. Another of the alternatives that this magnificent product offers us are the special patches for back pains impregnated in tiger balm. This way, you can go to work or leave home with them doing your normal life while the patch is acting, and also you will not have to worry about staining the clothes. All are advantages!

  • neck-torticolis-painless-tiger-balm
    - Neck pain and Torticolis:

    Neck pain or cervical pain, involves discomfort in any of the structures that make it up: muscles, nerves, intervertebral discs, bones or joints. One of the most common causes is cervical tension or distension due to activities of daily living such as: poor posture continued, working with the computer many hours with the monitor too high or too low, sleeping in an inappropriate position, ... Among other causes.
    Cervical pain can cause: stiff neck, numbness, tingling of the arm and hands, and even weakness.

    What Tiger Balm should I use to treat my Neck Pain?

    For cervical pain is recommended the use of red tiger balm, this ointment produces a sensation of heat in the area due to vasodilation of the vessels. It helps with the desinflamación and analgesia of the zone given to the ingredients that compose it. Do you suffer from cervical pain? Forget it with red tiger balm!