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View index & support for the most Common Health Issues

Natural Aids for Arthritis

The term "Osteoarthritis" means "inflammation of the joints" and this disease is the leading cause of physical disability in the country. Many factors can cause inflammation of a joint, so there are many types of arthritis. Some involve the joints themselves and others affect the tissue surrounding the joint.

It is estimated that 30 million people suffer from one of the many forms of arthritis, with over half of them seeking professional treatment [1997].


Osteoarthritis (OA), or degenerative joint disease, is the most common of all types of arthritis, and is generally less crippling than rheumatoid arthritis. It is characterized by mild early morning stiffness, stiffness following periods of rest, pain that worsens on joint use, and loss of joint function. Other signs of degenerative loss of joint cartilage are local tenderness, soft tissue swelling, creaking of joints, and restricted movement. OA usually affects the weight-bearing joints and the joints of the hand, and is seen primarily, but not exclusively, in the elderly.

Eighty percent of the people in the U.S. over the age of 50 have OA, with the condition being ten times more common in women, indicative of hormonal deficiencies after menopause. OA is caused by age, excess weight, general wear and tear, a lifetime of inadequate diet and exercise, genetic factors, hormonal deficiencies and is related to skeletal and postural difficulties. Repeated injury or undue stress on the joints sets the stage for inflammation followed by calcification, resulting in pain and disfigurement.

Regular walking and stretching exercises are important in keeping the joints lubricated with synovial fluid and improving blood supply to the bones and localized tissues. The key word here is moderate. Either extreme excessive pounding exercise or a completely sedentary lifestyle will aggravate the condition. Swimming and water exercises are excellent ways to strengthen muscles and loosen stiff joints.

Deep massage and movement re-education to restore proper, natural posture can help OA sufferers regain some mobility and lessen the pain. Directly massaging the affected joint will improve circulation and reduce swelling and pain. Use a little cream or oil for lubrication and lightly stroke the muscles around the joint, using your fingertips and the heel of your hand. If you can't use your hand, roll a clean tennis ball over the area to give a similar effect.

One of the best ways to manage OA is by diet, preferably a vegetarian diet. Improvement has been recorded in OA patients when they increased their intake of the following nutrients: magnesium (found in Brazil nuts,whole-grain flour, lentils and parsley), selenium (found in whole-grain cereals, "free-range" poultry, and fish), zinc (found in "free-range" poultry, fish, liver, and whole-grain cereals), Vitamin E (the best source of which is wheat germ, which can be sprinkled over food) and oily fish (such as mackerel, sardines, and herring).

Besides the basic tips found in "Remarks On Aging", there are specific supplements and lifestyle changes one can make to avoid specific age-related diseases. Here is a major health issues Baby Boomers (and others) will want to avoid.

Aids for Arthritis

Many people experience joint problems as they grow older. Most wind up relying on pain relieving drugs like NSAIDS, which do nothing more than temporarily ease pain. Unfortunately, they can also increase the risk of liver problems, kidney failure and cardiovascular disease.

Fortunately, there are supplements that offer real benefits for arthritic joints.

Everflex contains glucosamine hydrochloride, MSM, chondroitin sulfate, hyaluronic acid and devil's claw root ingredients shown to restore joint mobility and comfort, while strengthening connective tissues. It is available in tablets for internal use and as a topical pain-relieving cream.

Research has shown that healthy fats and fat-soluble vitamins are helpful in treating arthritis, so Vitamin D3 and Krill Oil with K2 can also be helpful.

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The "3 Essentials"
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