SYMPTOMS – Body stiffness and pain in joins, especially during damp weather, in the morning, or after strenuous activity. There may be a sharp burning or grinding pain or it may feel like a toothache. There may be stiffness and/or pain when moving a joint.
CAUSES – Arthritis is the inflammation of one or more joints. The word, “arthritis,” covers a number of disorders, some of which are covered in this present article, which deals the most completely with the problem.
The most common forms are osteoarthritis (this article), rheumatoid arthritis
(Part II), grout, and ankylosing sodalities. Other diseases which also infect the joints include lupus, Lyme disease, psoriatic arthritis, Sjogren’s syndrome, and Reiter’s syndrome.
The various types of arthritis affect the movable joints, which are the fingers, toes, wrists, elbows, hips, and knees. There are also joints between the bones of the spine. Each joint has cartilage covering over the end of the bone and is bathed continually in synovial fluid, in a capsule.
As a result of years of wear and improper diet, this cartilage becomes pitted, thin, and may even disappear. There is pain and stiffness. Older people experience this most often, and it generally occurs in the weight-bearing joints (hips and knees).
The connecting ligaments and muscles, which hold the joint together, become weaker. The joint may become deformed. There may be pain, but usually no swelling. Later, bony outgrowths may develop.
Osteoarthritis rarely occurs before 40, but affects most people after 60. Sometimes it is so mild as to be unnoticed. Women have it three times as often as men.
* Arthritis is the result of a complex of nutritional deficiencies.
* A dietary calcium/phosphorous ratio of 2:1 is ideal, yet can only be attained by taking calcium supplements. Meat is especially bad; it has a ratio of 1:12 (organ meats, such as liver and kidney) is 1:44. So the more meat you eat, the more calcium you need. It is as simple as that.
* In addition, there are all the acid purines and uric acid in meat. Eventually this hodgepodge of acids collects in the joints to such a degree that the bone is eaten away, the bursa becomes inflamed, etc.
* The sulfur-containing foods (asparagus, eggs, garlic, and onions) help repair bone, cartilage, and connective tissue. They also aid in the absorption of calcium.
* Eat green leafy vegetables, whole grains, oatmeal, and brown rice. These supply vitamin K.
* Eat fresh pineapple frequently. The bromelain in it is good for reducing inflammation. It must be fresh, since freezing or canning destroys the enzyme.
* The most beneficial vegetables include celery, parsley, alfalfa, wheat grass, garlic, comfrey, and endive.
* The most beneficial fruits include bananas, pineapples, sour apples, and sour cherries.
* Food containing the amino acid, histidine, include wheat, rye, and rice. Histidine helps remove metals, and many arthritics have high levels of copper and iron in their bodies.
* Eat some form of fiber, such as oat bran, rice bran, flaxseed, etc.
* Vegetable juice therapy is especially helpful for arthritics, and especially for those with rheumatoid arthritis.
Repeated juice fasts of 4-6 weeks are recommended, along with about 2 months of an extremely nourishing diet. The alkaline action of raw juices and vegetable broth dissolves the accumulation of deposits around the joints and in other tissues.
* Green juice, mixed with carrot, celery, red beet juice, and vegetable broths daily, are specifics for arthritis and other rheumatic diseases.
* Drink raw potato juice. Slice a potato with the skin on, cut it into thin slices and place in a large glass. Fill the glass with cold water and let it stand overnight. Drink the water the next morning on an empty stomach.
* Potato juice can also be made in a electric juicer. Make it fresh, dilute it 50-50 with water, and drink first thing in the morning.
* Milk, wheat, eggs, corn, and pork have been shown to produce arthritic symptoms.
* Vitamin C is necessary, to prevent the capillary walls in the joints from breaking down and causing bleeding, swelling, and pain. Vitamin C is vital to joint health.
* Folic acid, vitamin B12, and iron in food help treat the anemia which frequently accompanies arthritis.
* Helpful herbs include parsley, slippery elm, alfalfa, peppermint, and burdock root.
* DMSO (dimethyl suffixed) is a by-product of the wood industry. It can be applied to the skin above the affected area – to relieve pain, reduce swelling, and promote healing. Only obtain it from a health food store.
* Do not eat meat, avoid salt, caffeine, tobacco, paprika, and citrus fruits. Do not eat anything with added sugar. Chocolate, tea, and coffee may also cause problems. Reduce the amount of at in your diet.
ARTHRITIS – Rheumatoid Arthritis
SYMPTOMS – vague pain, stiffness, weight loss, numbness, and tingling of the hands and feet may precede its onset.
Swelling, stiffness, redness, and often crippling pain in joints, which eventually may fuse together. There is fatigue, anemia, weight loss, and fever.
Affected joints sound like crinkling cellephane. In contrast, osteoarthritis joints sound like popping, clicking, or banging. Joints of the hands, elbows, knees, and ankles are most commonly involved.
Upon awakening in the morning, there may be a joint stiffness which lasts an hour or longer. Swelling will occur in a specific finger or wrist joints, and also around the joints. Pain may, or may not, be present.
The condition can worsen or remain the same for years, and later worsen again.
CAUSES – Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an inflammatory arthritis. It is an autoimmune disorder. So many acids, purines, etc., have collected in the joints; and the calcium supply has been so low for so long, that the body gets mixed up – and begins attacking the synovial membranes in the joints. Cartilage, nearby tissues, and even the bone surfaces are destroyed.
This damaged area is then replaced with scar tissue, which tends to fuse together the joints – making them immovable.
Oddly enough, this form of arthritis most commonly occurs between the ages of 35 and 45, but may occur at any age. It also occurs even in children. Two-thirds of the
3 million Americans who have RA are women. Among those under 18, about 70,000 have it, most of them girls.
Causes include poor nutrition, bacterial infection, and/or physical or emotional stress. Stress seems to be the active agent which initially brings it on. Exposure, overwork, or acute infections can also do it.
Unlike osteoarthritis (Part I), which only affects joints here or there, RA affects all the synovial joints in the body.
In the first year after the disease appears, 75% improve without any treatment at all. Therefore natural treatments should help the situation even more. Keep in mind that 10% of those with RA become disfigured in one way or another. So this is a problem which is worth taking the time and effort to reduce or eliminate.
The likelihood of remission is greater early in the course of the disease. Each attack seems to be worse than those preceding it.
* It is important that you also read the article on “Arthritis” (Part I). It contains much important information which also applies to rheumatoid arthritis.
* Take calcium, magnesium, selenium, copper, B6, histidine, and bromelain everyday.
* Do not take iron supplements (such as ferrous sulfate, which is commonly given for anemia). These will intensify RA and arthritis.
* Fasting brings temporary relief to RA, but the pain, swelling, and stiffness tend to return a few days after the fast is ended. However, some recommend a longer vegetable juice and vegetable broth fast of two or more weeks as having more lasting effects.
* Food allergies can be involved. One study showed that 86% of a group of rheumatoid arthritics could trace the onset of their problem to allergies; most common were soy products, milk, eggs, coffee, and sugar foods. Try avoiding all those foods.
* One research study noted that peoples who use large quantities of wheat, rye, and oats tend to have high rates of RA
* People with RA were found to have lower blood levels of folic acid, protein, and zinc than other people.
* Lose weight, to reduce the strain on your joints.
* Stretch nylon gloves, worn at night, help keep the hands warm. Better yet, keep your arms and hands under the covers at night.
* Deep breathing exercises out-of-doors helps those with RA.
* Alternating hot and cold baths help. Give 6 minutes for the hot and 4 minutes for the cold, to increase blood flow to the area. The healing is in the blood.
* Aloe vera gel helps relieve pain
* Exercise is very important in both preventing and treating. Joints which are not used tend to stiffen. Practice bending all your joints in different positions, 5-10 times twice a day.
* Sleeping in a sleeping bag often reduce stiffness and pain in the morning. An electric blanket may also help. Keeping the body evenly warm at night is important.
* Charcoal poultices may be applied to affected joints.
* Hot packs applied to stiff joints tend to decrease morning stiffness.
* Reduce stress in your life. Worry, anger, and similar emotions weaken your body and help induce arthritic problems.
ENCOURAGEMENT – Think back over the past and recall to mind all the ways God has helped you through the years. Praise Him for what He has done, and continues to do for you. Stay close to Him and trust the future to Him. He will not fail you, even though you may not understand all the workings of providence. (Isaiah 61: 1-3)