Over 44 million Americans have been diagnosed with arthritis and any of these people are being treated with Western medications such as steroids and anti-inflamatories to manage their symptoms. While these medications may work for short term pain relief, they can weaken the body over time and cause even more debility. In my clinical practice, I have worked with people with all forms of arthritis and helped many get off of their painkillers and steroids by using a combination of acupuncture, herbs, nutritional supplements, and techniques such as yoga or meditation. These natural therapies for pain management do not have any side effects, unlike most of the Western medications for pain relief that can cause a host of complications.
Several natural herbal and nutritional supplements that have proven effective in overcoming the pain and inflammation of arthritis include fish oils, SAMe, MSM, and vitamins and minerals. There are also many Chinese Herbal formulas effective in treating arthritis as well, which a licensed acupuncturist can help you find one suited for your specific symptoms. As with most health conditions, basic dietary tips are also helpful for managing the symptoms of arthritis:
- Eat an organic whole foods diet that is rich in fish, chicken, vegetables, fruit, and whole grains. This diet is rich in essential fatty acids, antioxidants, and fiber.
- Avoid refined sugars and carbohydrates: These foods promote inflammation and pain and weaken digestion and vitality.
- Avoid synthetic additives and sweeteners and genetically modified foods.
- Avoid coffee and alcohol: Both of these are irritants to the liver, colon, and stomach. They can exacerbate pain and emotional ups and downs.
Acupuncture is one of the greatest therapies available for healing arthritis. It has been clinically proven to reduce pain and inflammation, improve circulation, and trigger the rest and restore mode of the nervous system. Acupuncture should be painless and deeply relaxing. I recommend getting weekly treatment for 6-8 weeks for chronic arthritis, then assessing for progress.
Meditation and yoga have been practiced for thousands of years in many different cultures. They have stood the test of time because they have enormous healing benefits for the mind and body. If practiced appropriately, meditation and yoga can offer profound support for managing chronic pain, overcoming fatigue, and improving flexibility.
Please let me know if you have any questions about arthritis and how Chinese Medicine can help you!
Your partner in health,