For educational purposes only and not intended as medical advice. Consult with your Health Care Provider before making any changes.
There is enough published research that many natural medicines can now be prescribed based on solid medical evidence. A review of 17 studies confirmed that omega-3 fatty acids (fish oil concentrates) decrease the joint pain and stiffness of arthritis, causing patients to use less drugs like aspirin and ibuprophen (14).
- A meta-analysis of the herb Harpagophytum procumbens showed that it reduced back pain and arthritic knee pain.
- A double-blind study of the active ingredient of Harpagophytum showed significant reduction of chronic back pain.
- After 90 days of a double-blind, placebo-controlled trial for arthritis of the knee, patients taking the active ingredient of the herb Curcuma were able to walk 209 minutes longer than those receiving only standard medical care, before knee pain made them stop .
- A combination of two herbs (Curcuma and Boswellia) in a 30-day comparison trial, was more effective for the pain of knee arthritis than 100 mg of celecoxib (Celebrex) twice a day.
This is a very impressive study. A total of 50 patients with x-ray confirmed arthritis of the knees were divided into two groups. Both groups received the standard ‘best medical treatment’. The test group received the same ‘best medical treatment’ AND Curcumin.
After 3 months, the Curcumin group had the following results:
- 58% decrease in arthritis symptoms, compared to 2% in the other group.
- They could walk 256 minutes longer before knee pain made them stop vs only 47 minutes for the other group.
- CRP (blood test for inflammation) decreased by 157 vs only 63 in the other group.
- They used much less pain pills vs no reduction in the other group.
How much does it cost?
Fireweed Health Care: Meriva-500, 1 cap twice a day, bottle of 60 for $34.00
Costco: Turmeric, 3 caps twice a day, bottle of 180 for $19.49
Natural Pantry: CuraMed, 1 cap twice a day, bottle of 120 for $62.99
Pure Encapsulations: Curcumin, 1 cap three times a day, bottle of 120 for $41.50 plus shipping, go here to order.
Curcumin and Boswellia
How much does it cost?
Pure Encapsulations: Joint Optimizer, take 3 caps twice a day, bottle of 180 for $37.20 plus shipping, go here to order.
Fireweed Health Care: Joint Optimizer, Take 3 caps twice a day, bottle of 180 for $39.00
CURAMIN is a good curcumin/boswellia combination available at most health food stores. Take 1 capsule 3 times a day.
A combination of two herbs (Curcumin and Boswellia) in a 30-day comparison trial, was more effective for knee osteoarthritis than 100 mg of celecoxib twice a day (Celebrex). They monitored knee pain, swelling, walking ability and joint tenderness, and the patients taking the herbal combination did substantially better than those taking Celebrex.
Boswellia is derived from frankincense, which was one of the 3 gifts brought by the wise men to the baby Jesus. Curcumin comes from turmeric which is a spice used to make curry. Both herbs have a long history of use going back thousands of years, and in recent years both have been the subject of numerous studies amplifying their medical value. I have 35 years of experience with these herbs, and they are valuable, reliable, effective medicines for people with musculoskelatal pain.
Devil’s Claw, (Harpagophytum procumbens), is an herb with a long history of use for arthritis and joint pain.
- A German study examined the use of devil’s claw for back, neck, and shoulder pain. In the 4-week study, 31 people took 480 mg twice a day and 32 people took a placebo. The results showed there was a significant reduction in pain in the people taking devil’s claw compared to the placebo group.
- A study published in the journal Rheumatology compared a devil’s claw extract providing 60 mg harpagosides a day and and 12.5 mg a day of the anti-inflammatory Vioxx (now off the market) for 6 weeks in 79 patients with an acute exacerbation of low back pain. Devil’s claw was as effective as Vioxx in reducing pain.
Dosage: You should buy a product that is standardized for the actual amount of harpagosides per capsule. Your total daily dosage should be 50 to 60 mgs of harpagosides. Avoid with gastric or duodenal ulcers, or using blood thinners or if you have a clotting disorder
How much does it cost?
Natural Pantry: Natures Way, 3 caps 3 times a day, bottle of 90 costs $18.99
SAMe or S-Adenosyl-Methionine
SAMe or S-Adenosyl-Methionine is a powerful natural medicine that can be used to treat arthritis, fibromyalgia and depression (not bi-polar).
Arthritis and Fibromyalgia:
- Numerous clinical studies have shown that SAMe can reduce the pain, stiffness, and inflammation of degenerative joint problems (arthritis).
- When compared to the common anti-inflammatory medications, Naproxen (Aleve) and Ibuprofen (Advil), SAMe did an equally effective job in reducing pain and inflammation over a three month period, and without the gastrointestinal damage caused by the drugs.
- In a comparison trial between Celebrex and SAMe, Celebrex was more effective the first month, but by the second month they were equally effective for arthritic pain.
- Clinical studies show SAMe also helps treat the fatigue and pain associated with fibromyalgia.
- Over 100 published placebo-controlled, double-blind studies show SAMe to be equal or superior to prescription antidepressants.
- According to one meta-analysis, or summary, of these studies, SAMe had a 92% success rate, compared to just 85% for the prescription antidepressants.
- Some antidepressants can cause liver damage, but SAMe has been shown in numerous studies to actually be liver-protective.
- It acts more rapidly than many antidepressants, often within a few days.
- There are no significant side effects.
- SAMe can be stopped cold turkey without causing withdrawal symptoms, whereas some antidepressants do cause withdrawal symptoms.
How much does it cost?
Natural Pantry: Jarrow Formula 400 mg, bottle of 30 costs $39.99
Costco: NatureMade 400 mg, bottle of 60 costs $29.99
GNC: 400 mg, bottle of 30 costs $38.99
Dosage: take SAMe on an empty stomach, 1 hour away from food, starting with 200 mg 1 or 2 times a day. If results aren’t seen in a few days, the dose can be increased, up to 800 mg daily if needed. Generally, 400 mg per day is sufficient. SAMe should be taken with B complex, or with a multiple that contains B6, B12 and Folic Acid. Since SAMe is unstable at higher temperatures, it should be kept refrigerated whenever possible.
Purchasing these products: our first recommendation is to use local suppliers. Natural Pantry has a huge selection and has always been our favorite. If it is hard for you to get out, or you prefer to shop online the following link has some excellent products. Shop Online by Clicking Here