The following Ayuvedic herbs can help in maintaining healthy joints, especially among the aging individuals and those suffering from diseases like arthritis and gout, known for crippling the joints.
Shallaki – Boswellia Serrata (Indian Frankincense)
Shallaki has been used by Ayurvedic physicians for centuries for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, gout, low back pain, etc, because of its potent anti-inflammatory action. The boswellic acids in Shallaki are responsible for its anti-inflammatory and analgesic action. Leukocyte elastase and oxygen radicals are also neutralized to lessen inflammation, increase mobility, and ameliorate morning stiffness. Research indicates that Shallaki helps to lubricate the entire joint structure. Shallaki is effective in shrinking inflamed tissues, improving blood supply to the joints and restoration of the integrity of blood vessels, thereby decreasing the pain and the swelling in the joints.
Guggulu – Commiphora Mukul (Guggul)
Guggulu contains Guggulsterones have been proven to exhibit potent anti-inflammatory action, which makes it indispensable in treatment of joint pain naturally, without the side effects of modern pain-killers. Guggulu has been used in Ayurvedic medicine for centuries to treat arthritis and obesity.
Nirgudi – Vitex Negundo (Chinese Chaste Tree)
Nirgudi contains alkaloids, which exhibit anti-inflammatory and analgesic (pain suppressing) properties through the inhibition of prostaglandin (PG) synthesis. Prostaglandins are a group of lipids which cause the inflammatory response to injury and production of vasodilatation, fever, and pain.
Adhraka – Zingiber Officinale (Ginger)
Gingerol, the active compound in Adhraka stimulate peripheral circulation to the extremities resulting in a warming effect on the body and joints. Adhraka also exhibits significant anti-inflammatory and analgesic (pain suppressing) action, through the inhibition of prostaglandin (PG) synthesis, thus providing significant relief from joint pain, naturally. Ayurvedic practitioners rely on Adhraka as a “carrier” herb that enables other herbs to react more effectively in the body.
Ashwagandha – Withania Somnifera (Ashwagandha)
Ashwagandha contains steroidal lactones (withanolides, withaferin) and heterogeneous alkaloids which contribute significantly to its adaptogenic, immunomodulatory, and anti-inflammatory properties that impart a rejuvenating effect on the body and improve the flexibility of joints. Ashwagandha also provides restorative benefit to the nervous system and helps in relaxing muscles.
Pippali – Piper Longum (Long Pepper)
Its fruits are used as an analgesic for muscular pains and inflammation. Pippali contains large number of alkaloids and related compounds, which stimulate the release of metabolic heat energy in the body and has a marked anti-inflammatory activity which is helpful in treating joint pains.
Devadaru – Cedrus Deodara (Deodar Cedar)
It contains number of flavonoids and alkaloids, which increase peripheral blood circulation, tone the muscles, and exhibit muscle relaxant activity which ultimately helps in improving joint movement and mobility.
Ajamoda (Trachysspermum Ammi)
Ajamoda has been used for centuries by Ayurvedic physicians to treat rheumatic conditions such as joint pains, Arthritis, backache, sciatica. It is also known for its analgesic and diuretic properties, and is also used for treating cough and uterine disorders.
Rasna (Pluchea Lanceolata)
The decoction of the plant has been used by traditional Ayurvedic physicians to prevent the swelling of joints in arthritis, rheumatism and neurological diseases. The plant is used for treating inflammation and bronchitis, cough, psoriasis, piles. Massage with Rasna oil is beneficial in treating swollen and painful joints. Rasna is known for reducing the inflammation and stiffness of the joints by restoring the proper functions of the biological components and maintaining the flexibility and healthy state of the joints; and also the stability of the connective tissues.
Many herbs have medicinal qualities and are safe and effective to use. Many can be found in your local pharmacy or health food store or as plants at your local grower.
Chamomile (Anthemis nobilis)
The flowers of the chamomile plant are used for appetite stimulation, bronchitis, excessive menstruation with cramps, fever, gastrointestinal cramps, hysteria, inflammation, insomnia, nervousness, rheumatic disorders, and parasites.
Devils Claw (Harpagophytum procumbens)
The root of the devil’s claw plant is used for arrhythmias, arteriosclerosis, arthritis, blood cleansing, diabetes, hypertension, liver disease, lowering cholesterol, rheumatism, stomach disorders, and strengthening the bladder and kidneys.
Garlic (Allium sativum)
A garlic bulb can be useful for asthma, cancer immunity, diabetes, digestive disorders, ear infections, flatulence, hypercholesterolemia, hypertension, and infectious diseases.
Ginger (Zingiber officinale)
The root of the ginger plant is used for childhood diseases, colds, colic, dizziness, fever, flu, gas pains, headache, indigestion, morning sickness, nausea, poor circulation, toothache, and vestibular disorders.
Ginseng (Panax spp.)
The root of the ginseng plant is good for age spots, blood diseases, depression, hemorrhage, increasing endurance and longevity, and stress. It is also used as an aphrodisiac.
Lavender (Lavandula spp.)
Lavender flowers, leaves, and oil are used for acne, bile flow stimulation, diabetes, edema, flatulence, hyperactivity, insomnia, intestinal spasms, migraine headaches, and stimulating menstrual flow.
Lemon (Citrus limon)
The fruit and peel of a lemon are used as an astringent, refrigerant, and source of Vitamin C.
Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis)
The lemon balm plant can be used as an antispasmodic and sedative. It is also used for Grave’s disease and cold sores.
Safflower (Cahamus tinctorius)
The flowers of the safflower plant are used for fever, gout, inducing sweating, measles, rheumatism, scarlet fever, and sedation. It is also used as an aphrodisiac and expectorant.
Tea Tree oil (Melaleuca alternifolia)
Tea tree oil is used for acne boils, burns, Candida infections, cold sores, joint pain, skin disorders, staphylococcal and streptococcal infections, and sunburn. It can also be used as a douche for trichomonal cervicitis and vaginal candidiasis.
Yarrow (Achillea millefolium)
The flowers of the yarrow plant are used for bowel hemorrhage, colds, fever, flu, hypertension, inducing sweating, measles, mucosal inflammation with discharge, nosebleed, reducing heavy menstrual bleeding and pain, thrombosis, and topical hemostasis.
Yellow Dock (Rumex crispus)
The root of the yellow dock plant can be used for anemia, blood cleansing, constipation, itching, liver congestion, rheumatism, skin problems, and eyelid ulcerations. It can also be used as a dentrifice.
Yucca (Yucca glauca)
The root of the yucca plant is used for arthritis, colitis, hypertension, migraine headache, and rheumatism.