Osteoarthritis drugs are certainly a viable option, but over-the-counter anti-inflammatories such as Alleve, and prescription drugs such as the COX-2 inhibitors, do not stop joint deterioration. In some cases they even accelerate osteoarthritis. Long-term use may lead to a significant incidence of kidney and liver damage, stomach ulceration, slight bowel irritation, and capillary fragility. More alarmingly, two of the most popular osteoarthritis drugs, Vioxx and Bextra, were recently recalled due to serious increased health risks, some even fatal!
Fortunately, natural osteoarthritis treatment can be just as effective, and many arthritis sufferers have been able to get their conditions under control using alternatives to osteoarthritis drugs.
For starters, you can choose from a variety of strengthening options, including: resistive water exercises, elastic bands, free weights, and exercise machines, to determine which osteoarthritis treatments work best for you. Physical therapy exercises, such as swimming, water aerobics, walking, bicycling, cross-country skiing, strengthening, and stretching, are all highly beneficial osteoarthritis treatments. Weight loss can also be helpful, as a means of lessening the impact on the joints when performing physical activities.
A healthy, balanced diet is another form of osteoarthritis treatment. It is recommended that you remove all inflammatory causes from your diet for at least one month. These include: dairy products, wheat, and ‘nightshade’ plants, such as potatoes, peppers, eggplant, tomatoes, and tobacco. Decrease consumption of all animal products other than fish. Aside from green vegetables, your diet should include carrots, avocado, seaweed, spirulina, barley, sprouts, pecans, soy products, and whole grains. Avoid caffeine and sugar, as well as alcohol, saturated fat, hydrogenated fat (margarine), excess salt, spinach, cranberries, plums, and nuts.
Along with maintaining a healthy diet, herbal supplements and natural remedies can also provide osteoarthritis treatment. Glucosamine sulfate, (GS) derived mostly from oyster and crab shells, and Chondroitin, derived mostly from shark and cow cartilage, are both building blocks for cartilage regeneration. SAMe and MSM (a form of sulfur) help build connective tissue to form strong joints, improving pain and stiffness for flexible joints and comfortable movement. CMO helps repair and restore damaged tissue without depressing the immune system. These supplements are much safer than osteoarthritis drugs, and do not cause any of the side effects associated with prescription medications.
Supplementing is important because many of these treatments are not easily obtained from food. In addition to the supplements above, Boswellia has a unique anti-inflammatory action, much like conventional NSAIDs. However, unlike NSAIDs, long-term use of boswellia does not lead to irritation or ulceration of the stomach. White willow is also an anti-inflammatory with pain relieving effects. Although typically slow-acting, results tend to last longer than aspirin. Ginger acts as an analgesic and anti-inflammatory and is most effective when made into tea. Like tea, fresh juices are more easily absorbed by the body than most supplements. Cherries, hawthorn berries, blueberries, and blackberries- and their juices- enhance collagen matrix integrity and structure.
With all these natural osteoarthritis treatments, it’s easy to see that temporary fixes are not worth a lifetime of discomfort. Furthermore, osteoarthritis drugs may actually speed up the degenerative process- not to mention numerous other side-effects. There is a better solution, one in which you can actively play a part. Talk with your healthcare practitioner to decide which osteoarthritis treatment will be most effective for you. Take charge of your treatment so you can take charge of your life!
This article is from Joint-Pain.com