Osteoarthritis or OA refers to the condition wherein the joints experience pain and stiffness. This medical condition can be due to various reasons including obesity, old age, poor nutrition and an external or internal injury. Many sufferers of haemophilia and rheumatoid arthritis also develop OA as a result of the existing conditions.
Pain and stiffness of the joints are the two main symptoms of OA and can make movement impossible. Therefore, it is important to treat OA and what better way to treat the condition than with some amazing and harmless medicinal herbs? However, the herbs should be used in combination with proper diet since nutrition also plays an important role in treating OA.
Herbal Remedies for Osteoarthritis
The roots and the tubers of devil’s claw are widely used in traditional medicine because of their anti-inflammatory properties. The herbal medication is specifically used in the treatment of OA because it provides immense relief from the pain and stiffness felt in the joints by reducing the muscular inflammation. The herb is available in capsule and powder form and may be taken in combination with some other herbs meant for relieving pain.
Some people may experience changes in heart and blood sugar levels upon consumption of devil’s claw. Consult your doctor before embarking upon this treatment.
Cat’s claw is also beneficial when it comes to treating OA and the associated symptoms. The bark of cat’s claw is used for preparing herbal teas, liquid extracts and capsules that are then used in the treatment of OA. The herb acts by restricting the formation of TNF-alpha, which is a chemical and responsible for causing inflammation of the joints.
However, the herb may induce nausea and dizziness in some people therefore; always take cat’s claw under medical supervision.
Turmeric is an herbal spice that is known for its anti-inflammatory as well as antiseptic properties. Many of us consume the herb daily because it is an important cooking ingredient. Taking supplements of turmeric is known to help with the treatment of OA by reducing the inflammation and the pain associated with the condition.
Turmeric supplements are available in capsule form and those suffering from OA should consume 50mg of the supplement four times a day.
Ginger is another herb that is used popularly as a spice in cooking. It has a distinct flavour and is used to enhance the taste of any dish. However, the root of ginger is known for its medicinal uses because of its anti-inflammatory effects.
People suffering from OA should consume 3 cups of ginger tea daily to treat inflammation of the joints. However, do not drink ginger tea after 5 pm as it may cause painful gas and bloating during bedtime.
Application of stinging nettle extracts directly on the joints is known to bring down the muscular inflammation and to relieve the associated pain. The leaf extracts are sold in many herbal stores in both cream as well as tincture forms. While it is safe to apply the extracts, do not overdo the application or it may result in painful skin rashes.