Want to sail through the new year free from the aches and pains of arthritis? You can! The secret is choosing the natural remedy that’s best for the area that’s hurting. Here are four soothing solutions for your bothersome arthritis pain.
Reach for comfrey.
Osteoarthritis often affects the joints we use most, like those in our hands. Luckily, a 2-minute comfrey cream massage three times daily eases symptoms by 95 percent in four days, according to a study in the British Journal of Sports Medicine. Comfrey compounds reduce inflammation and calm pain nerves.
Sip tart cherry juice.
Gout, caused by uric acid buildup in joints, triggers pain in the big toe. But Boston University scientists say sipping 2 tablespoons of tart cherry juice concentrate daily eases pain more effectively than aspirin, thanks to its natural anti-inflammatories. Plus tart cherries block uric acid buildup, cutting flare-up risk in half in two days.
Up your omega-3s.
To soothe ankylosing spondylitis, a less common form of arthritis that causes swelling in the spine and pelvis, try 2,000 mg. to 4,000 mg. of omega-3 fatty acids daily. Research in the Global Journal of Health Science found that omega-3s ease pain by 70 percent. Plus, neurologist Joseph Maroon, MD, explains they calm swelling as well as ibuprofen. Note: Check with a doctor before supplementing.
Try tai chi.
For body-wide aches caused by rheumatoid arthritis, try tai chi, which flushes inflammation. Tufts University scientists say women who followed the easy stretches twice weekly saw a 60 percent drop in joint pain and an 80 percent reduction in stiffness. Find free lessons on YouTube.com.
This story originally appeared in our print magazine.