Rheumatism: A general term for acute and
chronic conditions characterized by inflammation, soreness and
stiffness of muscles, and pain in joints and associated
structures. It includes arthritis (infectious, rheumatoid,
gouty); arthritis due to rheumatic fever or trauma/ degenerative
joint disease: neurogenic arthropathy; hydroarthrosis; myositis;
bursitis; fibromyositis; and many other conditions.
Arthritis: Inflammation of a joint, usually
accompanied by pain, swelling and frequently, changes in
structure. Other forms of arthritis include ankylosing
spondylitis (AS), and the systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE).
result from or be associated with a number of conditions
including: infection (gonococcal , tuberculous,
pneumonococcal ; rheumatic fever; ulcerative
colitis; trauma; neurogenic disturbances; degenerative joint
disease such as osteoarthritis; metabolic disturbances such as
gout ; neoplasms such as synovioma; hydrarthrosis;
para- or periarticular conditions such as fibromyositis,
myositis, or acromegaly, psoriasis, Raynauds disease.
is characterized by inflammation and/or pain in a joint(s). It
may appear suddenly or start gradually. Chronic arthritis
symptoms are: pain, swelling, stiffness, and deformity of one or
more joints. Some people feel sharp burning or grinding pain.
Others compare the pain to the toothache. Movement of the joint
usually hurts, although there may only be stiffness.
There are many different forms of arthritis. The most common
are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Osteoarthritis, a
degenerative joint disease, is related to the wear and tear of
aging and involves deterioration of the cartilage at the ends of
the bones. The once smooth surface of cartilage becomes rough,
resulting in friction. The tendons, ligaments, and muscles
holding the joint together become weaker, and the joint itself
becomes deformed, painful, and stiff. There is usually some pain,
but little or no swelling. Any disablement is usually minor.
Osteoarthritis rarely develops before the age of 40 and inflicts
15.8 million Americans. It typically runs in families, but
afflicts almost 3 times as many women as men.
Rheumatoid and juvenile rheumatoid arthritis are types of
inflammatory arthritis that attack the synovial membranes (supply
the joint fluids) surrounding the lubricating fluid in the
joints. The cartilage tissues in and around the joints and often
the bone surfaces are destroyed. The body replaces this damaged
tissue with scar tissue, causing the spaces between the joints to
become narrow, to develop folds, and to fuse together. The entire
body is affected instead of just one joint as in osteoarthritis.
Rheumatoid arthritis creates stiffness, swelling, fatigue,
anemia, weight loss, fever, and often crippling pain. It often
occurs in people under 40 years of age, including young children.
Currently, 2.1 million Americans are afflicted; twice as many
women as men. Juvenile arthritis affects 71,000 young Americans
(18 and younger); six times as many girls as boys.
Ankylosing spondylitis (AS) affects certain joints of the
spine, which become inflamed, stiffen, become rigid, and then
Systemic lupus erythematosus(SLE) is a malfunction of the
body's immune system. For reasons unknown, the body produces
antibodies that act against itself. Although it mimics rheumatoid arthritis
and results in painful and inflamed joints, SLE is not a
- Primrose or salmon oil, 2 capsules twice
daily, helps control arthritis pain and inflammation.
- Superoxide dismutase, taken as directed
on the label (injections have excellent results, or sublingual
(under the tongue) form is also good.
- Calcium, 2,000 mg. per day, is needed to
prevent bone loss (chelate form is the most effective).
- Magnesium, 1,000 mg. per day, to help
with calcium absorption.
- Coenzyme Q10, 60 mg. per day, increases
tissue oxygenation, with is needed to aid in repairing
- Garlic tablets, 2 capsules 3 times per
day, inhibits the formation of free radicals, which can damage
- Kelp, 8 tablets per day, is a rich
source of minerals.
- Multienzymes, taken with meals as
directed (avoid brands containing hydrochloric acid (HCL)
if ulcers are present.
- Niacin (B3, niacinamide plus vitamin B6
(pyridoxine), 100 mg. 3 times per day, increases
blood flow by dilating small arteries.
- Vitamin B complex with PABA, 100 mg. per
day, PABA is good for swelling.
- Vitamin B12 and folic acid, take
lozenges daily, is needed for proper digestion, the formation
of cells, and the production of myelin, the protective
coating surrounding the nerves. Also prevents nerve
- Vitamin C plus bioflavonoids,
3,000-10,000 mg. daily in divided doses for the vitamin
C, bioflavonoids 500 mg. daily, these are powerful free
- Germanium, 200 mg. per day, is a
powerful antioxidant that also relieves pain.
- Multienzymes, taken as directed with
- Proteolytic enzymes, taken as directed
- Multivitamin complex plus vitamin A and
beta-carotene, 10,000 IU daily, helps repair tissues
- There is no specific therapy. There are poultices and
teas used to relieve tenderness, swelling, and pain.
- Mix equal parts of the following herbs: black cohosh,
gentian root, angelica, columbo, skullcap, valerian, rue,
and buckthorn bark. Use a heaping tsp. to a cup of
boiling water; steep and drink 3 or more cups per day, as
the case may require. Drink a half-cupful at a time.
- An excellent poultice for swollen joints is made as
follows: 2 tbsp. mullein, 3 tbsp. granulated slippery elm
bark, 1 tbsp. lobelia, and one small tsp. of cayenne; mix
thoroughly together, then mix with enough boiling water
to make a stiff paste. Spread a layer of paste about 1/4
inch thick on a cloth. Cover the swollen joints with this
poultice and it will bring great relief.
- Alternating hot and cold treatments are many times very
helpful in relieving pain of arthritis. This treatment is
mainly for arthritis in the hands, wrists, or feet. Have
two containers large enough for hands or feet. One of the
containers should be filled with hot water at 105 degrees
to 110 degrees F. and the other should contain bold water
at 60 degrees to 70 degrees F. This is about the
temperature of water that comes from the cold water
- 1. There should be enough water in each container to
reach nearly to elbows or knees.
2. Us a bath thermometer to determine the water
3. The extremity should be placed first in the hot water
for 3 minutes and then in the cold water for 30 seconds.
4. Seven complete changes should be made, ending with the
5. This can be done 2 or 3 times a day.
6. If the hot water causes increased swelling, the
temperature can be reduced to 105 degrees F. or the time
in the hot water can be reduced to 2 minutes and the time
in the cold water increased to one minute.
7. If there is poor circulation, the hot water should
never be more than 105 degrees F.
8. For extremely painful joints, an ice pack can be used
until the swelling subsides and then the alternate hot
and cold treatments may be used.
- Arthritis Liniment: Mix in equal parts, wintergreen and
yerba santa. Put any amount of mixture in enough olive
oil to cover. Simmer for 30 to 60 minutes. Strain, and
apply to affected parts when cool.
- Check for possible allergies.
- Avoid milk; vitamin D causes sore joints. Avoid red meat,
sugar products, citrus fruits (tropical fruits, cold
weather fruits may be eaten), green peppers, eggplant,
tomatoes, paprika, cayenne pepper, tobacco, and salt.
Chocolate, cocoa, coffee, tea, soft drinks (carbonated),
white flour products and alcohol should be avoided.
- Exercise is essential for reducing pain and retarding
joint deterioration. Hot tubs and baths provide relief.
Raw lemon rubs and hot castor oil packs are also
extremely beneficial. If there is inflammation in the
joints, do not massage those parts.
- A free form of amino acid complex should be a part of the
program to help repair tissue. Some form of fiber, such
as oat bran or rice bran, should be eaten daily, and the
diet should be low in fats. Foods that should be consumed
include: eggs; onions; garlic or asparagus (sulfur
content of these two helps to remove metals); green leafy
vegetables, fresh vegetables; nonacidic fresh fruits
(cold weather fruits, not tropical fruits); whole grains; oatmeal;
brown rice; and fish. It is important to drink
- The nightshade vegetables (green pepper, eggplant,
tomatoes, white potatoes) contain a toxin called sotanine
that some people, particularly those suffering from
arthritis, are highly sensitive to. Sotanine interferes
with enzymes in the muscles, and may cause pain and discomfort.
- Do not take iron. It is suspected to be involved with
pain, swelling, and joint destruction.
- Do not take a multivitamin containing iron. Consume iron
naturally in blackstrap molasses, broccoli, Brussels
sprouts, cauliflower, fish, lima beans, and peas.
Nutramedical's Herb Finder Index