There are many natural therapies for arthritis and they fall into two general categories: anti-inflammatory and pain reducing; and joint-building.
Anti-inflammatory and Pain Reducing Supplements
The best supplements for this include:
- Guggul (Commiphora mukul) is an herb used in traditional Indian medicine, known as Ayurvedic medicine, for thousands of years for rheumatoid conditions; it also works well for osteoarthritis.
- Ginger is a common spice and a powerful anti-inflammatory.
- Boswellia (Boswellia serrata) is an herb that has also been a part of traditional Ayurvedic medicine for thousands of years for arthritic conditions. It has been shown in modern testing to support an effect similar to that achieved with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDS).
- Curcumin is an extract of the herb turmeric. It is one of the more powerful anti-inflammatory herbs and also is a great antioxidant.
- Devil’s claw (Harpagophytum procumbens) is an herb native to South Africa that has been used for many arthritic conditions. Modern science has tested it and found it to have anti-inflammatory properties and to be helpful for osteoarthritis.
- Essential fatty acids such as fish oil, borage, evening primrose, flax, and other oils can reduce inflammation by reducing the amount of inflammatory chemicals in the body.
Joint building supplements are unique to natural medicine and are a great benefit to people suffering from arthritis. These supplements provide the raw materials for the body to build and rebuild the protective coverings on joints. Joint-building supplements include:
- Glucosamine sulfate - a supplement that supplies the body with the basic building blocks, called glycosaminoglycans, for the protective coverings of the joints and for cartilage in general. It has been shown in multiple research studies to work for both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
- Chondroitin sulfate - provides more glycosaminoglycans to help build and rebuild thinning and injured joint coverings.
- Methyl-sulfonyl-methane (MSM) - a sulfur-donor type of supplement. Since much of the protective covering of the joints is made of sulfur compounds, this supplement feeds the body what it needs to repair thinning and damaged joint coverings.
- S-adenosylmethionine (SAMe) - is not only anti-inflammatory and anti-pain, but can also help heal injured joint coverings.