Herbal medicine has been used world wide for centuries to treat various forms of arthritis, like gout. Celery seed and Devil’s claw are two common herbs used to reduce pain, swelling and inflammation caused by gout. They contain complete compounds native to their species, whose chemical makeup may only contain a single alkaloid or other single element from a given substance. Herbalists have known for centuries that by using the entire herb or that part of the herb that contains the medicinal properties, patients obtain the fullest benefit from any herbal medicine.
Herbs can be used in a variety of ways, depending on the needs of the patient. In the case of sensitive people, herbal preparations can be prepared in an extremely mild dose or even in a homeopathic dose, mitigating side effects. Both Celery seed and Devil’s claw are considered safe when used according to directions.
Gout is caused by the deposit of uric acid in the small joints of the body. The disease favors the joints of the toes and fingers, but can also appear in ankles, knees and elbows. An extremely painful type of arthritis, gout causes excruciating pain, creates disability, and if left untreated, deeply disfigures joints as one ages. Conventional drugs can control uric acid levels and sometimes provide relief from symptoms; however, they all cause significant side effects. Diet is a major factor in controlling gout, as is the use of natural remedies such as herbs and homeoapthics.
The dried seeds from the celery plant are used medicinally in the treatment of arthritis, gout and rheumatism, according to Mercer University. Their properties not only reduce inflammation and lessen pain, may also help to relieve depression associated with rheumatoid arthritis and gouty arthritis. Celery seed not only acts as a powerful painkiller, but also is used as a diuretic. It removes excess fluids from swollen tissues around joints, providing pain relief and improving mobility. Additionally, celery seed is calming to the nerves, and reduces muscle spasms around swollen joints, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC).
Do not use celery seeds for treating gout if you are pregnant or have active kidney inflammation. Celery seeds may cause allergic reactions in the form of a skin rash or make your skin exceptionally sensitive to sunlight. Only use organic, food-grade celery seeds, not the seeds from a garden packet used for planting. Celery seeds may thin the blood, so if you take blood thinners consult your natural health practitioner for dosing guidelines.
Devil’s claw is used for reducing pain and inflammation of the joints caused by degenerative joint diseases such as gout and arthritis, according to the UMMC. Devil’s claw was used traditionally in a salve to heal various skin ailments. It is still available today as an ointment to soothe painful, inflamed joints. There is some scientific evidence indicating Devil’s claw is as effective at reducing various types of arthritis pain as a leading pharmaceutical drug in Europe, adds UMMC. In addition, it was found to improve mobility and function in the case of joint stiffness. Devil’s Claw is available as a dried or fresh root and in capsules, liquid extracts and topical ointments. It is considered safe when used according to directions and non-toxic. In some instances, it may cause digestive problems. You should not use Devil’s claw if you have ulcers, gallstones or liver disease unless under the supervision of a health practitioner. Avoid Devil’s claw if you are pregnant or nursing.
Mercer University: Celery Seed
University of Maryland Medical Center: Celery Seed
Mercer University: Devil’s Claw
University of Maryland Medical Center: Devil’s Claw
“Encyclopedia of Herbal Medicine: The Definitive Home Reference Guide to 550 Key Herbs with all their Uses as Remedies for Common Ailments”; Andrew Chevallier; 2000
“Prescription for Herbal Healing: An Easy-to-Use A-Z Reference to Hundreds of Common Disorders and Their Herbal Remedies”; Phyllis A. Balch; 2002
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