Top 13 Home Remedies For Arthritis

by Kiran Patil last updated - Medically reviewed by Tamanna Sayed (B.Sc. Applied Nutrition)

Arthritis has emerged as one of the main causes of disability among elderly people. Initially, arthritis commences with muscle and joint discomfort. There are different types of arthritis, including rheumatoid and osteoarthritis.

It is one of the most common diseases on the planet and a major percentage of the world is affected. The joints, muscles, and cartilage become swollen. The swelling leads to severe pain and discomfort. It is easy to diagnose arthritis because of the obvious symptoms it shows, such as stiffness in the joints, softness around the affected area, and limited motion of the joints. Weak digestion, overeating, constipation and no physical activity are also a few of the other symptoms of this disease. It is not just a single ailment, but rather a complex disorder including innumerable ailments.

How to treat arthritis?

Treatment for arthritis depends on its type and severity. In general, treatment focuses on management, because there is currently no known cure. Medications may be used to treat pain and reduce inflammation. Physical therapies can help to increase mobility and fitness and joint replacement surgery may be an option.

Treatment for arthritis should be perceived from a whole-body perspective and not simply a medical one implying all facets of wellness, including what one can do at home to manage the disease.

The regular treatment involves giving up on a sedentary lifestyle, especially for those who are suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. Some of the mild exercises that are also advised include swimming, water aerobics and walking so that the body’s dynamism and flexibility can be improved. Gentle stretches adapted from yoga asanas, Pilates or tai chi can help with strength and balance along with easing out the stress and anxiety associated with arthritis pain.

In addition to these, many lifestyle changes such as losing weight if you’re overweight, improving sleep patterns are equally important in treating arthritis symptoms.

The natural treatment of arthritis also focuses on listening to the body and slowing down when the pain from a particular body part increases. Overexertion should be prevented. Along with that, innumerable medications are frequently prescribed to prevent it, but you can do away with those medicines if you are willing to dedicate yourself to home remedies.

An older man trying to get out of his chair while an older woman looks at him with a worrisome look on her face

Arthritis can have various symptoms such as pain in the joints, stiffness of the bones, and swelling. Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Home Remedies for Arthritis

The home remedies for arthritis include the use of garlic, potato juice, alfalfa seeds, topical lotions, and hot water baths apart from building a healthy gut taking supplements, lowering emotional stress, and opting for daily massages. Many of these remedies depending on their anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Let’s look at these in detail.

Garlic

Garlic is well known as a treatment for arthritis and has been used for a long time because it assuages swelling and tenderness. There are numerous ways to consume garlic, as well. One way is to cook your food in garlic paste. If you can’t do that, then take the garlic pills available from your local chemist or just sprinkle a bit of garlic over your food. Ingesting garlic is very effective in relieving the associated pain.

A study published in Anticancer Agents of Medical Chemistry found that garlic has strong anti-inflammatory properties. The researchers hypothesized this was due to the presence of organosulfur compounds in garlic.

Potato Juice

Squeeze out the potato juice and consume it. It is an excellent way to treat arthritis. It is one of the most trusted remedies against arthritis. The antioxidants present in potato helps reduce arthritis inflammation and treat the condition. So include potatoes in your daily diet to help reduce the pain.

Topical Lotion or Gel

Capsaicin, the active ingredient present in bell peppers can help treat arthritis symptoms. A capsaicin based lotion or gel can be applied over symptomatic joints to help ease the pain and reduce the swelling. A study published in the Journal Systematic Reviews revealed the pain revealing properties of capsaicin for osteo and rheumatoid arthritis.

Build a Healthy Gut

The good bacteria in your stomach work to protect your body from diseases. Increase your body’s supply of good bacteria by incorporating more probiotic foods in your diets such as yogurt, curds, buttermilk, paneer, and kefir. A meta-analysis affirming the beneficial effects of the use of probiotic foods on arthritis symptoms was published in the journal of Frontiers in Nutrition.

Glucosamine/Chondroitin Supplement

Glucosamine, a naturally occurring substance in the body is a rubbery tissue that cushions and protects your joints and maintains the health of your cartilage. It may help reduce the osteoarthritis symptoms by slowing the deterioration of cartilage, lubricating the joints and improving the mobility. Glucosamine is commonly used alongside chondroitin, another substance that is present in the connective tissues of humans and animals.

A study from the New England Journal of Medicine says that how much relief a person may get from the arthritis pain depends upon the severity of his or her pain. People with mild pain did not see much benefit from its use. Where else people with more severe pain experienced modest relief with the combination of glucosamine and chondroitin.

These supplements might help people with osteoarthritis but not rheumatoid arthritis. In general, they have minimal side effects. However, always consult your health care provider before you start taking any supplements. Chondroitin can interact with anticoagulant and antiplatelet drugs such as warfarin and aspirin that can increase the risk of bleeding. If you are allergic to fish, avoid glucosamine based supplements, instead opt for one made from a vegetable source.

Alfalfa Seeds

These seeds possess natural medicinal qualities that help in the treatment of arthritis. Add 1 teaspoon of alfalfa seeds into a cup of hot water. Consume this water at least 3-4 cups daily for a period of two weeks in order to lessen the pain.

Turmeric

It is widely known for its powerful anti-inflammatory properties along with a list of myriad other health benefits. Enjoy a glass of traditional turmeric milk and observe measurable improvements in the arthritis symptoms as concluded in the meta-analysis published in Frontiers in Nutrition. A mixture of turmeric and ginger, when given to the adjuvant-induced arthritic rats, showed protective effects against the extra-articular complications of rheumatoid arthritis

Gluten-free Diet

A rheumatologist and director of rheumatology clinical trials at Columbia University Medical Center say some people may find relief from symptoms of inflammatory arthritis by opting for a gluten-free diet. However, more clinical trials are warranted in this perspective. Gluten generally may be the cause of underlying inflammation in some people and thus eliminating it may help reduce the associated stiffness and pain and promote increased mobility for some people with arthritis.

Hot Water Bath

This is the simplest and easiest way to ease your arthritis pain and effects. Simply take a hot water bath or sit in a hot water tub. To make it more effective, add some vinegar to the water for an effective bath. Hot water relaxes the muscles and joints and eases the pain. A study published in the Journal of Applied Physiology in 2018 found that hot water immersion is particularly useful for people suffering from chronic low-grade inflammation, especially for those who cannot exercise regularly.

However, some people may prefer cold water for relaxation. You can choose to sit in a cold water tub if that works best for you.!

Reduce Emotional Stress

Emotional stress is one of the most overlooked causes of arthritis. You must try and keep yourself stress-free. Practice yoga and meditation daily. Start with a five minutes session and then gradually take it to twenty or thirty minutes. For treating it, the mind should be relaxed, so it’s very important to put a halt to any and all kinds of emotional stress that you might be suffering from.

Daily Massage

Get a daily body and head massage. These massages help you relax and soothe your mind and body. Massage helps in regulating the blood circulation of the body, which also makes the body relax. Furthermore, it soothes joint pain and muscle aches. Massaging specific joints such as knees, feet, jaws hands and neck can help treat the arthritis pain. Seek help from a trained physical therapist to learn the techniques.

No Saturated Fats

Your intake of saturated fats should be minimal. A purely vegetarian diet can help you avoid all saturated fats. Saturated fats are found mainly in animal products, so monitor your diet carefully.

Increase your Intake of Omega 3

Eat plenty of fish like herring, sardines, and salmon. These fish are rich in Omega 3 fatty acids, which are quite effective in treating the pain of arthritis and the tenderness caused by the condition. One study found that the effect of Omega 3 fatty acids was the same as pain medication like ibuprofen. The researchers recommended Omega 3 as a safer option.

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About the Author

Kiran Patil is the founder of Organic Facts. He has a keen interest in health, nutrition, and organic living. He completed his B.Tech and M. Tech (Chemical Engineering) from IIT Bombay and has been actively writing about health and nutrition since over past 12 years. When not working he likes to trek and do gardening.

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