Herbal Treatment for Arthritis

by Rebekah Scott
(last updated December 9, 2009)

Before there were modern-day pharmacies and complicated prescription drugs, people all over the world were used to treating their ailments with homemade remedies. Many of these remedies were made from plants and herbs that were gathered locally, while others such as fish oil and dairy products were derived from animals. Since arthritis is one of the oldest and most common ailments known to man, numerous herbal treatment to address arthritis pain have developed over the years. The best remedies are those that have survived the years, and have helped people fight arthritis pain.

Ginger has been used for many centuries as an herbal remedy for a variety of ailments. In regards to arthritis, it can help reduce inflammation of the joints, which will then help ease pain and tenderness. Ginger can either be taken as a supplement in a dried pill form, or it can be used fresh to make a lovely tea. Simply place a small piece of skinned ginger in a cup of hot water and let it steep for one minute. Then add a little lemon juice and some honey and enjoy.

Fish oil, which is made from the fatty tissue of certain fish, and any other supplement containing Omega-3 fatty acids also work to reduce inflammation of the joints. In fact, in some studies fish oil has stood out as one of the most effective herbal treatments for arthritis. Fish oil is commonly found in capsule form.

Calcium supplements are easy to find in any grocery store, pharmacy, or health store. Since calcium is the basic building blocks of bones, taking a calcium supplement helps to promote bone health and strength.

Not all herbal treatments need to be taken in pill form. There are a variety of herbs that, when mixed together and emulsified in oil, can be rubbed on sore joints to soother arthritic pain. Some common ingredients in these types of oils are garlic, turmeric, pepper, and cinnamon. These ingredients help shrink the blood vessels close to the surface of the skin, and that in turn helps fight inflammation. Even doing nothing more than rubbing warm olive oil into joints can go a long way in reducing pain. The warmth of the oil and the massaging motion will help loosen and soothe stiff joints.

Because herbal remedies are not regulated by the FDA, always remember to exercise caution when taking them. It's a good idea to speak with your doctor before beginning any herbal treatment, and it's crucial that you check to make sure that you aren't taking anything that could negatively react with any prescription medications.

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