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  • Arthritis triggers inflammation, pain, swelling and tenderness in the joints. Certain herbal treatments can relieve symptoms. You should always consult with a health care professional experienced in using natural therapies to design a safe and effective regimen.

    Pain

    Several studies have shown that topical capsaicin cream, devil's claw and cat's claw relieve pain associated with arthritis, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. The university also recommends willow bark, which has the same chemical makeup as aspirin.

    Inflammation

    Anti-inflammatory herbs interfere with the inflammation that triggers arthritis symptoms. Alternative medicine expert Dr. Andrew Weil notes turmeric and ginger are best. He also recommends feverfew.

    Alternative Medical Systems

    Traditional Chinese medicine and Ayurvedic medicine---India's ancient medical system--homeopathy and Native American medicine all have long histories of using herbs to deal with a variety of health problems. Weil recommends working with practitioners of these disciplines for arthritis problems.

    Precautions

    The University of Maryland Medical Center warns the aforementioned herbs are not appropriate for people taking blood-thinning medications. Additionally, those with diabetes should not use devil's claw, while people taking blood pressure medication should avoid cat's claw.

    Other Beneficial Supplements

    Other non-herbal natural supplements might be beneficial as well; they include omega-3 fatty acids, glucosamin, chondroitin, SAMe, bromelain (you can increase effectiveness by taking it with turmeric) and avocado soybean unsaponifiables (ASU). .

    Source:

    Dr. Weil: Aching with Arthritis

    University of Maryland Medical Center: Osteoarthritis

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