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Herbs With Nicky Treacy Kohler - Coping With Arthritis

Thursday, 24 November 2005


Nicky will be here talking to us about arthritis and the fact that it can affect anybody from the age of five.  Nicky will be giving us herbal remedies for arthritis.
Some Statistics
. One in seven Irish families has arthritis and it affects one in three families.
. 13% of Irish people show some signs of arthritis.
. There are over 100 types of arthritis.
. Osteoarthritis (OA) is by far the most common form of arthritis in the Irish population.
. The majority of Irish people over 55 years of age have X-Ray evidence of OA at some joint in their body.
. Women are likely to be affected 2-5 times more that men by OA.
. It is estimated that approximately 1% of the adult population is affected by Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA).
. RA affects women strikingly more than men, with the overall ratio about three women to one man, and the prevalence increases with age.
. As many as 5,000 children in Ireland have some form of arthritis. Most children will lead a full and active life with proper care.
. Juvenile arthritis (JA) is the most common rheumatic disease in children affecting one in 10,000.
. Every year in Ireland, around 400,000 people consult their doctor with symptoms related to arthritis
. Fifty-two per cent of those over 55 will develop arthritis; however, almost one in five of those under 55 will also present to the medical services with problems relating to arthritis.
. There is a significant burden of ill-health due to disability that is directly attributable to arthritis.  For example, there is a 40% increased of heart attack in patients with rheumatoid arthritis.
. Arthritis can be caused by wear and tear injuries and inflammatory conditions.  It affects all age groups with juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis at the youngest end of the spectrum to old or third age.  Persevering with home treatments can give a marked improvement of many conditions.

Seek professional advice if you have
. Severe pain
. Sudden joint swelling
. Suspect broken bones
. Any injury that may need an X-ray.

Providing you are not pregnant or on medication the following is perfect.

Herb 1 - Devils Claw
The properties of this plant were discovered by African tribes who used a decoction of tuber to treat arthritis.  It is an anti-inflammatory, is analgesic and is a good bitter.
Dose: Add a few drops to a small glass of water and drink

Herb 2 - Lemon (Citrus Limon)
This originated in India and lemons are available everywhere.  The Spanish have written whole books about the lemon.  Despite it's acid content, once digested it has an alkaline effect within the body making it very useful in rheumatic conditions.  It strengthens the vein walls and weak capillaries therefore it helps prevent ulceration of the legs that RA sufferers are prone to.  The juice eases stomach acidity for arthritis, gout and rheumatism.
Dose: Try squeezing a lemon and having a few teaspoons of lemon juice in some boiling water like a tea and drink in the mornings.

Herb 3 - Celery Seed + Apple Cider Vinegar
Make sure the celery seed comes from a health food store and that the apple cider vinegar is organic where possible.  The concoction contains iron, potassium and sodium.  It is an anti-rheumatic and anti-gout formula.  It has an alkaline reaction to blood and assists the elimination of uric acid.  It is an excellent way to have herbal meds if you can't take alcohol.

200 grams Celery Seed
1 bottle of Apple Cider Vinegar (organic)

. Pour the celery seed into the apple cider vinegar using a funnel
. Strain it out using a pop sock into a clean bottle
. Label the bottle and leave for 1 month

Dose: 2 teaspoons in water each morning

Herb 4 - Epson Salt
Take two handfuls of Epson salts and put into a half filled bath with water temp at 98F.  Stay in the bath for 20 - 30 minutes, topping up hot water as necessary.
Massage the affected joints.  When you get out of the bath, wrap a sheet around you and pop into bed.

Herb 5 - Fish Oils
The fish oils soften up fibrous tissues.  It also reaches and nourishes cartilage and helps increase elasticity which prevents degeneration.  Eating oily fish is even better than taking supplements.