Saturday, August 3, 2013

Best Alternative Rheumatoid Arthritis Diet


Can eating the right foods relieve RA symptoms? Some research shows that fish oils reduce joint inflammation - but the unfortunate reality is that despite years of study, no conclusive evidence shows that any foods make RA symptoms flare up or decrease.

In other words, there is no effective "rheumatoid arthritis diet." Research does show that weight reduction does help, since being overweight causes extra stress on RA sufferers' weight-bearing joints. That increases joint pain, stiffness and inflammation.

Beyond that, each patient is different. While there is no rheumatoid arthritis diet, doctors do advise patients to avoid any food that seems to make symptoms worse. At the same time, they caution against fad diets, such as excluding whole food groups. For example, a popular misconception is that gluten, found in wheat, is detrimental to RA. No research backs up such a claim. Nevertheless, scores of RA patients are shunning wheat products.

Researchers at the University of Oslo in Norway have studied food-related antibodies (proteins that defend the body as part of the immune system) as relate to the RA diet. They discovered that RA patients' intestinal fluids had higher levels of proteins from milk, cereal, eggs, fish and pork than the general population.

Food allergies happen when your body mistakenly detects that something you've eaten is harmful. Immunoglobulin E antibodies come to your defense, setting off a chain reaction that causes such symptoms as joint aches, swelling and rashes.

One theory is that antibodies and some proteins form immune complexes in the patient's intestine. These circulate throughout the body, causing joint inflammation. The body remembers and reacts the next time that you eat the food that caused the problem.

The obvious solution for RA patients is to avoid foods that seem to make their condition worse. On the other hand, if certain foods help a patient's symptoms to improve, it only makes sense to adjust your diet accordingly.

However, according to the Arthritis Foundation, there's no recommended "arthritis diet."

Nevertheless, almost half of all people with RA report that they feel better from excluding "suspect" foods that they are convinced made things worse.

Saturated fats may increase inflammation in some people. So, RA sufferers may want to steer clear of bacon, steak, butter, and cream, which may possibly increase prostaglandins in the body, which some doctors believe cause inflammation, pain, swelling, and joint destruction in rheumatoid arthritis.

Other findings show that meat may be detrimental to RA patients since it contains high amounts of arachidonic acid, a fatty acid that the body converts to prostaglandins. As a result, some rheumatoid arthritis sufferers insist that a vegetarian diet has made their lives more livable. However, other RA patients report receiving no benefit whatsoever from a meatless diet - except for inconvenience.

What about Omega-6 fatty acids found in corn oil, soybean oil, sunflower oil, wheat germ oil, and sesame oil? They contain linoleic acid. Some nutritionists believe that consuming too much Omega-6 fatty acids may provoke rheumatoid arthritis.

And the list goes on.

The bottom line is: What works for you?

Stop the Pain and Progression of Rheumatoid Arthritis II


Once you are diagnosed with R.A., what are the next steps. My wife followed the recommendations of her doctor and started taking two medications. The first was a steroid, prednisone. Reading the possible side effects of this and her other medication was enough to scare you to death. Everyone has read about the horrors of steroids, but when you are hurting as badly as she was hurting you are willing to try anything. The second medication was methotrexate. It was initially developed to treat cancer, but now is one of the gold standards for rheumatoid arthritis. There is no known cure for rheumatoid arthritis. Some patients go into remission when the damage to joints stops and the pain goes away using traditional medical therapy. It is interesting that trauma may cause a relapse of the disease. Another patient in the waiting room with my wife shared that her symptoms reappeared after she caught her hand in a recliner resulting in a broken finger. But many people have gastrointestinal trouble taking the drug. It can also be given as shots. Taken orally, most patients take the entire dosage once a week, usually on Saturday, when stomach trouble will not interfere with work. Many patients have to go to stronger, more expensive drugs as the disease progresses. In fact, one of the first things my wife's doctor told her was she would not be able to afford the treatment since we didn't have medical insurance and he would not accept Medicare or Medicaid. He said the usual progression of treatments would run from forty-five to sixty thousand dollars a year, but he might be able to get her on a trial program. This was even a bigger incentive for us to find a better solution.

I might add that some, including the author you are about to discover, says that taking these drugs can slow up the recovery using the diets described. She specifically mentioned the two drugs my wife started taking. I specifically asked her doctor if we could try the diet first. He wanted to start her on the drugs immediately to give her relief from the pain. We decided to work with Nell's doctor and take the medications. As I have said several times, I am telling our story and what we have done. I encourage you to do what you feel is best for you. Most traditional doctors will want you to take the drugs. You might want to try the fasting for five to six days and see if it offers some relief, and then make your decision, maybe before seeing the doctor. But don't put off getting a correct diagnosis too long.

I Hurt All Over... How to Ease Away the Pain of Fibromyalgia!


At one moment, a life of activity consumed with enjoyable activities like biking, golfing, going to the movies, out to dinner. Then one day, it's gone. Replaced with constant pain and fatigue. Here's the lowdown on fibromyalgia.

Fibromyalgia is one of the most common forms of arthritis seen in a rheumatology practice. It is actually a soft tissue form of rheumatism. Typically, a patient will complain of feeling achy all over, being chronically tired, and feeling like they're walking around in a constant fog. Often a patient will complain of short term memory problems.

The American College of Rheumatology has set criteria by which fibromyalgia symptoms can be classified. These consist of a history of widespread pain for three or more months and pain in 11 of 18 tender point sites when 4 kilograms (about 9 pounds) of pressure is applied. When accompanied by a history of chronic fatigue and non-restorative sleep (waking up and feeling as if you haven't slept), there is a strong suspicion that fibromyalgia is to blame.

People affected by fibromyalgia experience two unique responses to stimuli. They perceive normal stimuli as being painful and they perceive painful stimuli as being more painful than it should be.

These abnormal responses are thought to be due to an abnormality involving pain-processing pathways within the central nervous system.

History and physical examination is the first step in evaluation. Unfortunately, there are no specific laboratory tests that confirm the diagnosis. However, the tests can be helpful in excluding other conditions that can mimic fibromyalgia such as hypothyroidism, lupus, and rheumatoid arthritis.

Treatment consists of a combination of four approaches. The first is patient education. Talking with the patient about the diagnosis and presenting what he options are. The second is institute medications. These may include one or more of the following:

o Analgesics which help to control pain. An example would be a drug such as tramadol

o Antidepressants which are used for their ability to elevate serotonin and nor-epiephrine levels in the brain. Examples include amitryptiline, fluoxitene, and duloxitene.

o Muscle relaxants like cyclobenzaprine

o Anti-seizure medicines like gabapentin

o Anti-fatigue medicines (modafinil)

The third therapy is non-impact aerobic exercise which helps to increase endorphin production in the brain and helps to recondition muscles.

Finally, the fourth is cognitive behavioral therapy which helps with goal-setting, coping and other measures which reduce the sense of victimization that people with fibromyalgia often have.

Fibromyalgia can be treated effectively. It is important that a patient seek out a qualified and empathetic rheumatologist to help them.

What You Need To Know About Carpal Tunnel Syndrome


Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is a disease that occurs in the wrist and it is affecting more and more individuals each year. As a result of unwarranted pressure occurring on the median nerve, a nerve located in the wrist and responsible for much of the functioning of the hand, the symptoms of Carpal Tunnel may appear. Symptoms associated with Carpal Tunnel are mild to severe pain in the joints, fingers, hands and/or arms, unexplained numbness and tingling, and in some cases, difficulty using the hands or arms due to weakness brought on by the onset of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.

The reasons or causes of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome vary. Sometimes Carpal Tunnel Syndrome arises because the individual in question possesses another condition that was the cause of its onset, while other individuals may have engaged in actions that brought about the onset of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. Still other individuals may get Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and may never really know the reasons why. The causes of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome include, but are in no way limited to:

Aging--natural aging can result in the weakening of the tissues within one's wrist as well as the bones. With repeated and constant use, an issue with Carpal tunnel may develop over time as pressure increases on the median nerve.

Diabetes--Diabetes is a disease that is well known for creating nerve compression, especially in the feet, but it can also cause nerve compression in the hands as well. When a person with Diabetes winds up with a compressed median nerve, the result is the formation of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.

Ganglion cysts--cysts can form inside of the wrist and directly place pressure on the median nerve and the surrounding area--the result? You guessed it--Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. Tumors also produce the same affect when they are located in an individual's wrist and can prove to be the cause behind the onset of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.

Gout--gout is a disease that can affect the joints and nerves of the people affected by it. As a result, Carpal Tunnel Syndrome sometimes becomes a secondary condition for the patient with gout.

Improperly healed injuries--former injuries to the wrist area that may have healed incorrectly can also bring on a case of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.

Lupus--Lupus is a tricky disease as it often mimics the symptoms of other diseases. Joint pain can be a result and a person may actually have Carpal Tunnel when they have Lupus, or they may simply exhibit the symptoms of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and not really have it at all. Rheumatoid arthritis is another joint condition that produces similar results.

Repetitive motion injuries--this is one of the biggest reasons for developing Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. Many jobs require employees to make repeated motions with their hands and even if the motion seems harmless, like typing and excessive keyboarding, they can result in Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome can be treated with a number of non-invasive techniques and if such techniques fail, then surgery can be contemplated. The pain that is associated with Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is typically managed with pain medications, chiropractic visits, and physical therapy. In extreme cases, when surgery is needed, the surgery focuses on removing the pressure from the median nerve in the wrist by making the tunnel that holds the median nerve wider. Unfortunately, surgical procedures that address the issue of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome can result in permanent scarring on the wrists.

Ultimately, the effects of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome can be extremely painful. In fact, Carpal Tunnel Syndrome can be so painful it creates a grave disability for the individual that has it. Never the less, there are a few things people can do to fight Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and its onset. Preemptive measures against Carpal Tunnel Syndrome include:

Maintaining overall body health--when an individual is completely healthy, the risk of getting Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is lowered. Although some conditions are unavoidable, conditions like obesity can be avoided and can reduce the risks associated with getting Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.

Stay away from bad habits--Smoking is also associated with the onset of Carpal Tunnel--smoking restricts nerves and may cause them to swell. The swelling in the median nerve then results in Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. Therefore refraining from such habits is an effective measure in preventing the onset of Carpal Tunnel.

Using ergonomically designed equipment--when involved in jobs that involve repetitive motion, it becomes necessary to use special equipment that can help prevent the onset of carpal tunnel. Specially designed keyboards, mice, wrist pads, and wrist stints can actually help prevent the onset of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and other repetitive motion related injuries. Finally, taking frequent breaks from jobs that require repetitive motion can also keep Carpal Tunnel Syndrome at bay.

Signs And Symptoms Of Painful Heels


The first signs of a painful heel normally occur after some form of exercise or injury, although its onset can be gradual if it is due to standing on your feet for long periods of time or a gradual weight gain.

It is characterised by the intense pain felt when first standing after sitting for long periods of time or after rising in the morning. This pain generally subsides over time but can re-occur throughout the day.

The term heel pain refers only to people who generally suffer with severe pain at the bottom or at the back of the heel. It occurs because of some kind of impact pressure of the tissues surrounding the heel bone called the Calcanium or from the ligaments and tendons that attach themselves to it.

Plantar fasciitis is the most common form of a painful heel. The plantar fascia ligament joins the toes to the heel via the main arch of the foot and if this is torn in someway at the heel it will give rise to heel pain.

These micro-tears at the heel can occur at any age, from younger sports people to more senior overweight persons. However, it is increasingly seen in those overweight as the additional burden is placed on the plantar fascia ligament after a heavy heel strike when walking or running which eventually tears.

Other possible causes are rheumatoid arthritis or gout. If they occur along the plantar fascia area then they will also cause painful heels.

Several of the common causes are listed below:


  • Weight gain and Obesity

  • Over Exercise

  • Walking in unsuitable footwear such as high heels

  • Standing for long periods of time

How to Treat Painful Heels

There are many simple exercises available to exercise and stretch the plantar fascia muscle such as wall push-ups and stair stretches. Massaging and reflexology may also help the pain as well a warm foot bath with essential oils.

Plantar fascia night splints are also an excellent idea and will help keep the plantar fascia ligament stretched overnight so it is not as painful in the morning. Part of the problem is that this ligament relaxes during sleep and so is much more painful under tension when first walked on in the morning.

Changing your footwear or insoles to ones that are more supportive for the arch is one of the best ways you can help yourself, but if the discomfort continues you may need to visit your doctor or chiropodist/podiatrist for further diagnosis and treatment. They may recommend a course of steroid injections into the heel or prescribe a custom orthotic.

The best way to relieve painful heels however is probably just to buy a heel cup made of silicon gel with a softer in a part where the heel is most painful. These will fit in most footwear and available from most chemists and pharmacists. You can read more about how heel cups can help painful heels and calcaneal bursitis by visiting my blog.

Your painful heels should subside with time, however, it normally takes about 6 to 9 months to rectify completely depending on the amount of damage done in the first place so you probably need to tailor your exercise to accommodate the level of pain. Keep your jogging and walking to a minimum until you have sought a solution or further advice.

Hand Exercises to Ease Rheumatoid Arthritis Pain


Rheumatoid arthritis is a painful disease that attacks the joints and usually begins in the hands. Typically, the joints of the hands and the feet are usually the first to succumb to rheumatoid arthritis. Hand and finger exercises can help reduce pain and maintain a good range of motion for those suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. Even if you are not diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis, hand and finger exercises can help you maintain joint health and flexibility.

Increase wrist joint flexibility and reduce arthritis pain by stretching out your hand. Hold your hands out in front of your body with the palms down. Try to point your fingers and thumb upward toward the ceiling while keeping your palm parallel to the floor. Stretch and hold this position for 5 seconds. Repeat 2 or 3 times.

Hold your hands out with your palms pointed toward the floor. Bend each finger toward the floor from the first joint closest to the hand. Try to move only one finger on each hand. Try to keep the middle and end joints of each finger straight and try not to bend your wrist. Repeat this movement up to two times each day.

With your hands in the same position, palms pointing down toward the floor, bend each finger from the first joint toward your palm. Sometimes it is easier to perform this exercise using first one hand and then the other. Keep your wrist straight and try to keep the middle and end joints of each finger straight. Turn your hands over so that your palms are facing the ceiling and repeat the exercise. Repeat twice each day.

Make an "O" shape with each finger and your thumb. Begin with your index finger and touch it to your thumb to make the "O" shape. Continue with each finger and then repeat the exercise with the other hand. This exercise can be repeated up to 10 times each day.

Hold your hands out straight in front of you with your palms pointed down toward the floor. Spread your fingers out slowly until they are spread as far apart as you can spread them. Then, make a fist without relaxing your hand. Hold your fist closed for up to 5 seconds. Repeat the exercise twice each day.

Flex your fingers daily to lessen the pain of rheumatoid arthritis and increase flexibility and hand mobility. Your strength will also increase as the joints become more flexible and hand muscles develop.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Rheumatoid Arthritis Herbal Remedies, Causes and Symptoms


Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic systemic or whole body disorder particularly affecting the synovial joints. It may however affect major organs and tissues as well. The root cause of the disorder is still unknown, but it has been noticed by experts that autoimmunity plays a leading role in the progression and development of the disorder. Thus it is often grouped as an autoimmune disorder. When rheumatoid attacks a synovial joint, it actually causes inflammation of the synovium, the membrane secreting synovial fluid. This further causes the development of pannus in the synovium, and enlargement of synovial cells, thereby leading to excess production of synovial fluids.

As the disease progresses, total damage of articular cartilage and ankylosis of joints occur. Apart from synovial joints, rheumatoid may inflict organs like kidney, lungs, heart and blood vessels, also the subcutaneous tissue under skin. It should be checked at the inception, or else it may lead to total loss of mobility or permanent disability. It is common among youths, and females are more attacked by rheumatoid than men. Smaller joints like fingers, wrists, cervical spine etc generally fall prey to rheumatoid arthritis, and the attack of the disorder takes place in a symmetrical pattern. The pain associated with rheumatoid worsens early in the morning just after waking up from sleep, and restricts activity for quite some time.

Causes

The cause of rheumatoid arthritis is a subject of research all over the world. Researchers have suspected heredity or genes to be a factor promoting the disease. Also it has been assumed that any infection due to bacteria, virus or fungi, or any other environmental factor like smoking tobacco serves as a stimulant or catalyst making the immune system hyperactive. The hyperactive immune system gets misdirected, and invades the body's own healthy tissues, thereby causing inflammation in the affected area.

Symptoms and Diagnosis

1. Excruciating muscle and joint ache
2. Swelling of joints
3. Stiffness of joints
4. Redness of skin around the affected joint
5. Joint tenderness
6. Low grade fever
7. Fatigue
8. Loss of appetite
9. Anemia
10. Hoarseness of voice
11. Shortness of breathing
12. Chest pain
13. Dryness in mouth
14. Lumps under skin or rheumatoid nodules

Timely aggressive diagnosis of the disorder is necessary. It may be done through blood tests such as rheumatoid factor test, X-rays.

Rumatone Gold Capsules and Massage Oil are breakthrough herbal ayurvedic formula to combat rheumatoid arthritis. A regular course of these supplements for 2 months provides lasting relief from the symptoms of rheumatoid.

Is There a Natural Cure For Rheumatoid Arthritis?


Many people wonder if there is a natural cure for rheumatoid arthritis. Most doctors will tell patients who have been diagnosed with the disease that there is no proven cure for arthritis. What they mean is that modern medicine has been unable to come up with any cure for this condition. The question that many people ask then is whether there is a cure to be found in natural treatments.

Modern medicine has yet to determine the exact cause of RA. Without this information, they are unable to formulate an effective cure. There have however been some instances where people have found natural cures for arthritis. In all of these cases, the cure had something to do with their diet.

Treatment with Foods

The most promising natural treatment seems to involve seafood. Fish, in particular, seems to be particularly effective at curing arthritis. Some people discovered that when they added fish to their regular diets, their arthritis symptoms lessened. They continued to improve with continuous intake of fish. Eventually, people realized that it was the fish oils in the fish that was treating their arthritis problems.

Studies have since shown that there is a scientific basis behind this form of natural treatment for RA. The answer lies in the omega fatty acids in fish oils as well as other trace elements. These help to address the inflammation caused by arthritis and also the joint degeneration.

In some cases, conventional anti-inflammatory drugs have proven to be ineffective. In such cases, natural supplements derived from fish oils have been effective. In particular, omega-3 fatty acids have been particularly effective at combating rheumatoid arthritis. It works through reducing the effects of inflammatory agents.

Problems with Natural Treatments

While natural treatments do appear to have some potential, they still cannot be considered cures. Rheumatoid arthritis results in damage to the joints and surrounding tissues. Modern medicines have been unable to reverse this damage, and the body is unable to heal it on its own. Natural treatments have also proven to be ineffective at doing so. Thus while natural treatments are useful in treating rheumatoid arthritis, they have not yet reached the level of cures.

Still Useful

While natural treatments for rheumatoid arthritis cannot cure the condition, they should still be taken into consideration. Modern medicines have often proven to be relatively ineffective at treating rheumatoid arthritis. In such cases, people often despair of ever finding any help for their condition. When this happens, they should be made aware of the existence of natural treatments. These treatments are relatively inexpensive, and have often proven to be very effective.

For those who do not wish to consume supplements, simple diet adjustments have been known to work as well. Many fish such as salmon are known to contain high levels of omega-3 fatty acids. By including fish in their daily diets, patients have been able to greatly improve their arthritis symptoms.

It can therefore be said that there is no proven natural cure for rheumatoid arthritis. However, natural cures should not be simply dismissed, as many doctors are wont to do. So, if you find that modern medicines have no effect on your rheumatoid arthritis, you should seriously consider using natural treatments to control the condition.

Rheumatoid Arthritis Symptoms


Arthritis is known as the painful inflammation and stiffness of joints in the body. Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic, painful, autoimmune disease of the joint that destroys, deforms, and disables movement of joints altogether. It is caused by the infection in the immune system. That is, the anti-bodies attack their own tissues, mistaking them for foreign bodies. It may gradually affect other organs of the body, too. Hence, it is known as autoimmune disease.

Rheumatoid arthritis can make a healthy individual a life-long patient at any age. It may be a genetic or non-genetic disease. It appears in several stages. That is, initially a patient may feel only pain caused by the inflamed joints. Gradually, the affected lining of the joints, called synovial lining, starts thickening. When the condition becomes severe, the inflamed joint and surrounding area release a fluid or enzyme that destroys the flexible soft tissues, the cartilages, and bones. This changes the original shape of the joints. The patient finds this stage very painful. He or she is left with stiff and deformed joints and is literally unable to move. The small things that a person once did with ease are no longer possible for them. For instance, lifting a pen is virtually a painful act.

Rheumatoid arthritis can affect any joint. But studies report that it begins from smaller joints such as the joints in the fingers. It has also been found that it affects the joints simultaneously. For instance, an individual complaining of pain in the wrist experiences it in both left and right wrists.

The pain is a very common feature. But if the pain is a prolonged one and is followed by stiffness, it is a matter of concern. Some of the symptoms identified with rheumatoid arthritis include pain and stiffness upon waking and pain after prolonged rest. Additionally, individuals may also face difficulty in standing up after being seated or lying down in bed for a long time. They might have symptoms of flu and weakness or fatigue. The individuals may lose weight because of low appetite, turn anemic, and often may be depressed and stressed. They are found to have sweaty palms and feet, and lesser flexibility in moving. In some persons, skin ulcers and visible lumps or rheumatoid nodules are also reported. As such, the health of the individual declines and it is necessary to take support from others for daily activities.

Since rheumatoid arthritis also affects organs in acute stages, the patients can become anemic (low in red blood cells), develop dry mouth and eyes, and have inflamed spleen and lining in the lungs. In some persons, the disease flares up after a prolonged time.

The Potential Role of Niacinamide (Vitamin B3) In Reducing One's MS Symptoms


Niacinamide (Vitamin B3) is an important nutrient for brain health. It is a key nutrient for mitochondria which are the powerhouse for brain cells. The mitochondria convert the energy which is stored in sugar into the energy which the cell can use to do is work in the form of ATP. An ample supply of Niacinamide makes the generation of ATP more efficient and reduces the level of toxic free radicals (a bi-product of making ATP).

Vitamin B3 or niacinamide has been shown to be beneficial in a number of autoimmune diseases Almost fifty years ago Dr. Kaufman used niacinamide to successfully reduce symptoms and improve function in patients with rheumatoid arthritis over fifty years ago. Twenty years ago Yamada reported that niacinamide reduces the severity and can even reverse early type 1 diabetes in mice. In 2006 Kaneko reported that using niacinamide was effective in preventing and reducing the severity of existing disease in the animal model of multiple sclerosis. However studies have not been published about humans using niacinamide to treat or prevent MS.

How does one get vitamin B3? It is possible to take vitamin B3 in supplement form. Niacin (a form of vitamin B3) has often been given to treat patients with low HDL cholesterol (good or protective cholesterol) and has been associated with flushing, headache and abnormalities in the liver with very high dosing. Niacinamide, another form of vitamin B3, has far fewer side effects, even at high doses. Food sources include tuna, salmon, liver and other organ meat, mushrooms and nutritional yeast.

In general obtaining nutrients through food is superior to using supplements. First, the body is unlikely to absorb toxic levels of the nutrient. Also when whole food is consumed, additional micronutrients which are beneficial to the body are usually present. Our understanding of clinical nutrition is still primitive. There are thousands of other useful micronutrients which have not been identified.

What doses have been used? The mouse study which showed reversal of the animal model of MS used 0.5 mg per kilogram. The niacin version of B3 has been used in doses between 500 and 5000 mg for treating cholesterol and rheumatoid arthritis. However because of the potential for problems with high doses (anything over 500 mg) it is important to have a physician monitor liver function through blood tests. It is likely that doses which have been used for treating high cholesterol would be an acceptable dose range when trying to reduce the severity or prevent the onset of multiple sclerosis symptoms.

Bottom line
Vitamin B3 in the form of niacinamide is a very important nutrient for brain health. Best food sources are wheat germ, mushrooms, organ meats, tuna and salmon. Supplements are another option. Doses over 500 mg a day should be monitored by a physician. Other conditions have been treated with doses as high as 5 grams per day.

What is Arthritis? Rheumatoid Arthritis and Prognosis of Osteoarthritis Symptoms & Treatments


Arthritis is a common disease in the modern world. It has been a disease known since the ancient periods of time and is never referred to a single disease. The arthritis, in general, is an inflammation of the joints with numerous conditions attached to it. This is the only reason why it is being mentioned as a group of conditions. There are various forms of arthritis but the root case is the same in all cases.

What is the root case?

What is arthritis? This question often arises in our minds. The root case in arthritis is that there is inflammation of the human joints that resorts down to tautness, bumps and agony. Arthritis may cause enough stiffness of the joints and it might result into life threatening situations. Arthritis must be well looked after and any signs and symptoms must be reported to the physician without any negligence. Any sort of negligence might result into muscle damage, bone damage and also damages to the internal body parts.

The most common cases of arthritis are the rheumatoid arthritis and the osteoarthritis. No matter whatever may be the form of arthritis, the fact of the matter remains the same that arthritis can affect a human body at all ages? The rheumatoid arthritis is a typical form of the arthritis that results due to the faulty immune attacks on a human body. The rheumatoid arthritis is therefore an "autoimmune disease "which generally causes joint pain, swelling, stiffness and joint dislocation. The rheumatoid arthritis is a difficult disease when it comes to diagnosis and the most common cause is the hereditary presence or the genetic factor.

Osteoarthritis is the other most common case of arthritis in human beings. Osteoarthritis is a disease featuring degeneration of joints and most often lead into swelling, pain and tenderness of joints. Any king of gravity pressure leads into wear and tear and thus physical damage to the human joints. If you are interested to know the prognosis of osteoarthritis, symptoms, treatments and causes then you must go through the following sections.

The causes of osteoarthritis may be varied and dynamic according to human beings. There are abounding causes of osteoarthritis, which comprise endocrine cause or diabetic problems, metabolic malfunctions, anatomical abnormalities, or congenital causes, inflammatory joints, post traumatic causes, genetic causes, improper nutrition and also from the improper functioning of the nervous system.

The symptoms of osteoarthritis are specific and affect the fingers, spines, hips and knees. The fingers are affected with swollen and reddish enlargements. The hip joints are severely affected and this occurs mostly among men. The knee joints are affected in many individuals by excessive squatting. The spine is affected with weakness of the legs and arms.

The treatments that follow in case of osteoarthritis are essentially bringing down the weight, providing nutritious diet, antioxidants, vitamins, Acetaminophen, hot or warm baths and through artificial devices known as orthoses. The prognosis of osteoarthritis, symptoms, causes and treatments must have been clear by now with all those features discussed.

Rheumatoid Arthritis Symptoms and the Lifestyle Challenge


Rheumatoid Arthritis or RA is an auto immune disease, which is characterized by inflammation in the lining of the joints and only affects 1 to 2 percent of the population.

But the life altering effects of this disease can be quite invasive. If you suspect that you may have Rheumatoid Arthritis or if you have already been diagnosed with such, it is important to clearly understand the most common symptoms for this condition so that you can most effectively participate in the management of your healthcare.

RA can develop in children, teens, young adults and even those in middle age. Currently research indicates that women are more often diagnosed with RA than men.

Early symptoms can at times be tough to diagnose since the early symptoms can go in and out of remission making it hard for your physician to see the physical symptoms of what you are describing and have been experiencing. You might consider keeping a log of your symptoms so that your healthcare provider can see the pattern.

While symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis can differ from person to person, there is currently no single medical test that will definitively diagnose rheumatoid arthritis.

Most often physicians report that patients commonly hear a complaint of repetitive joint pain that frequently occurs every day. The pain and joint limitations can cause your day to be interrupted and tough to manage. RA can certainly cause trouble in the basic management of your daily activities. It can give you a challenge trying to manage even the most basic of tasks.

RA symptoms often include joint stiffness in the morning in and around the joints that persist for more than thirty minutes, joint swelling in the wrists, knuckles, or in the individual finger joints. Many patients also report a feeling of heat over the irritated joints. Often RA can invade other joints, such as the jaw, elbows, shoulders, feet and ankles.

While there is currently no known cure for rheumatoid arthritis, with aggressive and early treatment the inflammation and pain associated with RA can be better controlled. This early and aggressive treatment is also shown to decrease and often stop the joint destruction of rheumatoid arthritis.

With all the new advances in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, there is joy for patients in knowing that there is now more hope than in previous decades.

Learning to understand and identify the common symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis is the key in actively participating in your own healthcare.

After all, your health is worth your time to get educated!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Natutral Treatment For Rheumatoid Arthritis: Options For You To Consider


Turning to a natural treatment for rheumatoid arthritis is an option you can consider. Such a treatment does not usually involve the use of prescription medications and would have virtually little or no side effects.

Rheumatoid arthritis is a disease that refers to the inflammation of your joints. When your joints are inflamed, you experience pain, swelling, stiffness and general discomfort. It results from infection, trauma, degenerative changes, metabolic disturbances, or other causes.

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease whereby your immune system starts to attack its own body tissues. It is also considered a progressive disease. This means that over time, your arthritis symptoms can worsen.

There are over 100 different classifications and types of arthritis. It is likely that if you have been diagnosed with one of these, your doctor would have prescribed you the appropriate drugs for it. Although drug medication can be used effectively to treat many kinds of arthritis, there are potential side effects when you become over dependent on them for arthritis pain relief.

Here is a quick run-down on some of the newest and most popular natural rheumatoid arthritis treatments. They may be used alone, or in conjunction with each other.

Physical therapy. This is a very popular natural treatment for rheumatoid arthritis as it is highly effective. In many cases, regular prescribed exercises can even improve the range of physical motion substantially. Physical therapy can also help you deal with muscle and joint stiffness, increase muscle strength, and reduce allover pain.

Acupuncture. Acupuncture is a traditional Chinese healing method that dates back more than 3,000 years ago. It is used to effectively treat the symptoms of arthritis, in addition to other health ailments. Acupuncture is a procedure used in which specific body areas (or meridian points) are pierced with fine needles for therapeutic purposes or to relieve pain or produce regional anesthesia.

As a natural treatment method, acupuncture is fast gaining popularity in America and other western countries. By 1993, Americans were making 12 million visits per year to acupuncturists, and spending $500 million annually on acupuncture treatments. By 1995, there were an estimated 10,000 certified acupuncturists practicing in the United States; as of 2000, there were 20,000.

Acupresure. Acupressure is another ancient Chinese form of therapy that has been used for thousands of years. It is also used to as a natural treatment for rheumatoid arthritis. In contrast to acupuncture, here, the acupressure practitioner uses his or her fingers instead of needles. Studies have shown that acupressure seem to release endorphins in patients, causing feeling of pleasantness and comfort. It appears that acupressure has strong anti-inflammatory healing abilities for rheumatoid arthritis.

Relaxation therapy: Relaxation therapy is a multidisciplinary approach that incorporates several different therapies working toward a common goal. The goal of relaxation therapy as a natural treatment for rheumatoid arthritis is to release muscle tension and joint rigidity to reduce your overall pain and discomfort. The different relaxation therapies include meditation, yoga, stretching exercises and Pilates.

Hydrotherapy. Hydrotherapy is fast becoming a popular therapy for rheumatoid arthritis patients as it is fun and can be very effective. It involves a series of water exercises, usually done in lukewarm water. Patients with rheumatoid arthritis report that the feeling of warm water helps to relax them and provide much relief from their pain.

In addition, several studies have shown that hydrotherapy is an effective therapy that helps reduce the weight and pressure on the joints. The warm water relaxes the muscles and helps reduce the feeling of stiffness. Hydrotherapy is also effective in weight management, which is particularly important if you have rheumatoid arthritis.

Occupational therapy. Occupational therapy is often used as a complementary and natural treatment for rheumatoid arthritis. In occupational therapy, you learn how to use their body parts more efficiently. Occupational therapy helps in ensuring that you can go about your everyday chores and tasks so that less tension is placed on the joints. Specially made splints are often used to help patients accomplish certain tasks without placing excess pressure on their joints. You and your occupational therapist can work together to tackle any specific challenges that you face. Your occupational therapist can design specific exercises for this purpose and train you in the use of special assistive devices.

Hot and cold therapies. These therapies take advantage of the effects of certain temperatures on the joints. Compresses, ultrasound devices, and warm wax may be used to apply heat to the joints. Ice packs may be used to apply cold temperatures to the affected areas. The efficacy of heat and cold therapies varies according to the patient.

In most instances, the benefits of using the above mentioned natural treatment for rheumatoid arthritis outweigh any instant results, but far more damaging, derived from consuming drugs and medication. The only drawback is that usually a natural treatment does not produce instant reliefs. You may need to use it over a period to know if it works for you. It will also be a good idea to maintain a journal to keep track.

Foot Swelling - Good, Bad, and Ugly


Hot air balloons are beautiful, aren't they? Bright and colorful, they drift quietly through the air, removing the traveler from toil and endless trouble. Unfortunately, not all things that swell up like hot air balloons are beautiful or free from difficulty. Joints, for one, are decidedly less pleasant when they begin to swell. Fortunately, your friendly local podiatrist has the know how to help reduce swelling and get your joints to function a bit better.

Swelling is, of course, perfectly natural. It's the body's way of responding to injury or infection. After damage to a joint, more blood is sent to the area to try to heal it. Unfortunately, the increase of blood also causes a buildup of fluid in the tissues around the joint, which tends to cause pressure and pain.

Swelling may be caused by many things. It may be a result of trauma, such as an ankle sprain or break, or stubbing your toe. Or, swelling might accompany arthritis, which itself may be caused by crystal deposits in the joint (in the case of gout), degeneration of cartilage in the joint (osteoarthritis), an autoimmune disease attacking the joints (rheumatoid arthritis), and so on. Or, joint swelling may be caused by an infection.

Swelling may appear as one of the first symptoms of arthritis. Those who suffer from rheumatoid arthritis, for instance, often list joint swelling as one of the earliest symptoms. In the case of gout, swelling may be so severe that the skin over the joint will appear stretched and shiny.

Joint swelling is usually accompanied by other symptoms, such as redness, warmth, stiffness in the joint, and pain. You may also find it difficult to walk, usually because of pain, but sometimes because your joint has lost some mobility.

Because the potential causes of joint swelling are so numerous, you should be prepared to give plenty of information to your podiatrist so he or she can make an accurate diagnosis. Your foot doctor will most likely perform a physical examination of your foot, check your joint for range of motion, and will inquire about your medical history and a history of your symptoms. Be prepared to answer questions such as how long the swelling has been present, whether it comes and goes, when it's worst (i.e. is it worse at night, or perhaps does it tend to get worse during certain activities such as running), and also whether or not you've ever ridden in a hot air balloon. (Actually, they may not ask that last question.)

There are a few tests your podiatrist may suggest to determine the cause of your joint swelling. These may include X-rays, CT scans, or MRIs to get an accurate picture of what's going on inside your joint. Additionally, your doctor may want to withdraw some fluid from your joint to test it for infection, or for uric acid crystals in the case of gout.

Treating swelling in the joint generally focuses on reducing bloodflow to the area. This may be accomplished by icing the joint (20 minutes on over a thin towel and 40 minutes off), and elevating your foot at hip level, or slightly higher. Your podiatrist may also recommend anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen, or sometimes cortisone injections.

Of course, your doctor will also want to address the underlying injury or problem that's actually causing the swelling. This may be done by using casts, braces, or orthotics (prescription shoe inserts) to provide support to the foot and prevent further injury. Physical therapy might be used to help strengthen your muscles. In some cases, surgery is necessary to reduce swelling and reestablish the functionality of the joint, or your foot surgeon may opt to fuse the joint to reduce pain and swelling.

Some patients also find it beneficial to soar through the sky in a basket suspended from a balloon filled with hot air. Actually, this may not really be the case. But hot air balloon rides (or even just looking at pictures of hot air balloons) will help you remember that, even though your joints may be painful and unpleasant when they swell up, some swollen things are actually pretty darn nice.

Bone and Joint Problems - Signs, Symptoms, Causes


Bone and joint problems were at one time thought to be a fact of life, things that simply accompanied the aging process. Now we know a little more about the problems. Here you will learn what we know about the symptoms and causes of bone and joint problems.

The early symptoms of bone and joint problems are aches, pains and stiffness. The later symptoms may include any of the following conditions:

Osteoarthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis
Osteoporosis
Frequent bone fractures
Osteomalacia

Bone fractures in the elderly can be deadly. Complications can arise from surgery. The fracture may fail to heal properly leading to permanent disability.

There are risk factors and causes of weak bones and joints. Age is one of the risk factors, but as mentioned above, the problems are not caused by normal aging. Something else is going on.

Other than frequent fractures, the most common symptom of osteoporosis is a hunched appearance. The spine starts to curve in as though the head is too heavy to be held up any longer. People may also seem to shrink as this curvature occurs and for other reasons associated with unhealthy bones and joints.

Osteomalacia is a painful condition that is often mistaken for arthritis, especially when it affects the elderly. Not only is there pain in the bones and joints, there is also pain in the muscles.

Who's At Risk?

Osteoporosis is the most common bone disorder among post-menopausal women. It has been estimated that fractures occur due to osteoporosis every three minutes in the United Kingdom.

Men are not immune to the risks of osteoporosis. Current figures show that 1 in every 8 men over the age of 50 will have a fracture related to osteoporosis at some point in his lifetime. Even more men have osteoporosis, but are lucky enough to avoid a fracture.

What are the Causes?

The underlying cause of osteoporosis and osteomalacia is reduced bone density. Fractures occur because the bones are thinner and more brittle. In the case of arthritis, the underlying cause is loss of protective cartilage between the joints.

What Causes Reduced Bone Density?

Researchers have learned that many things can interfere with the production of new bone, which is an ongoing process throughout a person's life. The process may be slower with age, as most bodily processes are, but it should not stop completely.

One thing not only interferes with the production of new bone. It actually causes the breakdown of bones to get at the calcium stored within them. As you might suspect, lack of calcium in the diet will cause the body to break down bone to direct the mineral to other bodily function. But, there are many minerals stored in bones. So any mineral deficiency can lead to bone loss.

Lack of vitamin D will also cause unhealthy bones. Osteomalacia is actually the adult equivalent of rickets, caused by inadequate vitamin D intake.

Other causes of reduced bone density include physical inactivity, smoking cigarettes, excessive alcohol consumption and diseases that interfere with nutrient absorption. Endocrine and rheumatic diseases are examples.

How to Protect Your Bones

Now that you know more about the risk factors and causes, you would probably like to know what you can do to protect your bones. That is the subject of my next article. Please click the Bones and Joint Problems link below in the resource author box.

Arthritis: Treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis


Rheumatoid Arthritis is the second major type of arthritis - exceeded in number of cases only by osteoarthritis. The type of arthritis known as rheumatoid is a very serious ailment caused by joint inflammation. This inflammation involves multiple nearby joints in a symmetrical pattern -- i.e., both sides of the body are affected.

CAUSES OF RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS (RA):

It is not known what triggers the onset of rheumatoid arthritis. Regardless of the exact trigger, the result is an immune system that is geared up to promote inflammation in the joints and occasionally other tissues of the body.

RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS PAIN:

The pain associated with the disease is at times so severe that it almost completely disables sufferers. It is significant of rheumatoid arthritis that affected joints frequently become red, swollen, painful, and tender. RA is known to affect women more often than men.

STAGES OF RA:

Rheumatoid arthritis advances in three stages:

1) Stage 1: This stage starts with painful swelling and stiffness of the joints.

2) Stage 2: In this stage, the pain aggravates and the bones and cartilage are severely affected thereby restricting the movement of the person altogether.

3) Stage 3: This is the chronic stage, which can be resistant to treatment

IMPORTANCE OF EARLY DIAGNOSIS:

If you are a sufferer of rheumatoid arthritis, it is important that you seek treatment as early as you can, well BEFORE Stage 3 involvement. It is in your best interest to immediately consult a doctor, as soon as you have pain in the joints.

IMPORTANCE OF EARLY TREATMENT:

That's right -- don't wait for any other symptom to appear. Current treatment protocol dictates early treatment. Early treatment allows the rheumatoid arthritis sufferer to get help BEFORE joint deformity starts to limit physical activity and mobility. It also permits management of pain and improved physical function in a way that promotes greatest quality of life.

TREATMENT APPROACHES FOR RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS:

By seeking early treatment, you can reduce the severity of the disease's attack. It is advised to avoid treatment delay and to stringently follow treatment advice. Since there are a wide variety of treatment approaches, it is advocated that the RA sufferer be willing to be open-minded and flexible in selecting the modalities that can create highest individual success. Natural approaches that have proven effective for rheumatoid arthritis include: (a) stress-management techniques; (b) mindfulness meditation; (c) the remedies advocated by Edgar Cayce; and (d) consistent, regular exercise.

I urge you to seek early assistance and effective treatment for this debilitating disease. I invite you to seek help right now, today!

Relieving Symptoms of Tendonitis With Chiropractic Therapy


Whether it be tennis elbow, runner's knee, or jumper's knee, all these conditions point to tendonitis: a fibrous tissue inflammation that connects the muscles to the bone, causing movement restriction and resulting pain. Often, athletes (casual or not) are likelier to develop tendonitis simply because of their partaking in repetitive activities. Computer programmers and typists are also prone to wrist tendonitis due their repetitive keyboard use. Similarly, pianists may also be afflicted with the same problem.

Traditional medicine has often relied on treatments that merely address the symptoms, such as cortisone injections. However, steroids and anti-inflammatories only mask the symptoms of a problem that will return the moment the injections stop. They also bring about myriad side effects. Anti-inflammatories often results in stomach and intestinal pain. In fact, more than a third of people on anti-inflammatory drugs report gastrointestinal pain.

Causes of Tendonitis

  • In the majority of cases, tendonitis is due to strain of repetitive movements. Strain can also be due to too much stress placed on the tendons from improper or imbalanced exercise routines.

  • Aging. As the body ages, tendons harden and lose some of their elasticity. This translates into joint inflexibility.

  • Injury. Occasionally, tendonitis develop following another tendon or joint injury. In such cases, tendonitis may develop because the injury has not fully healed.

  • Other conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis, can cause tendonitis as a result of unusual pressure or strain on the tendons.

  • Thermal injury. Occasionally, thermal injury can bring about tendonitis, affecting the hands, wrists, and feet. Rock climbers and hikers sometimes report thermal injuries.

Symptoms of Tendonitis

  • Pain when the tendon is under pressure. Pressure can come from weight lifting, playing tennis, or any type of manual job (such as typing).

  • Movement restriction without pain.

  • Pain, swelling, or stiffness to the affected area.

  • Restricted movement in a specified area. For example, someone with tendonitis in the bicep may not be able to move the arm fully.

  • Pain to the affected area when touched or moved. As tendonitis progresses, pain may occur irregardless of whether the tendon is under pressure or not. In such cases, pain may occur as a result of the area being merely touched.

  • A burning sensation around the affected area. Or, in more serious cases, the area becomes swollen, red, warm or "lumpy" as a result of accumulation of fluid and inflammation.

Tendonitis Treatment

  • Stop the activity that is causing the pain, resting the the affected area for at least 3 weeks. After a period of rest, the tendon will likely be able to heal itself.

  • Mobilize the area, if possible, with braces.

  • As part of rehabilitative exercises, gentle stretching and strengthening exercises will help restore tendon mobility. Contact a chiropractic doctor for precise advice on the proper type of exercises to perform. You will also receive advice of warming up techniques that can decrease the risk of muscle strain.

  • Employ massage therapy. Massage therapy helps ease the pain of tendonitis and may help recovery. Your chiropractic doctor will know of an appropriate massage approach for your condition.

  • As part of a healthy, calcium-rich diet for healthy bones, make sure to eat fruit, fresh vegetables, seeds, and nuts. Aim to include salmon, tofu, sardines, and grains in your regular diet. In addition, including a cup of yogurt and another glass of low-fat or skim milk can add precious milligrams to your daily calcium intake.

  • Ice therapy. Ice therapy may help alleviate pain or reduce swelling.

  • Ultrasound treatment. The use of ultrasound may help break down scar tissue around the tendon, increasing circulation and softening the affected area. It may also help with the pain.

Contact Your Chiropractic Doctor

Doctors of chiropractic are licensed experts familiar with the diagnosis and treatment of tendonitis. With an adequate recovery approach, your tendons will improve or altogether recover from its present impairment. Studies show that chiropractic care is one of the most helpful therapeutic approaches for a variety of conditions. Your chiropractic doctor has many tools to help address your pain and discomfort.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

The Attack Of Arthritis


A diagnosis of arthritis can literally challenge even the strongest.

Meaning joint inflammation, arthritis encompasses over 100 different arthritis conditions. It, in fact, does not just simply define one type of disease.

Arthritis, seems to often result from a malfunction of the autoimmune system, and causes inflammation of the joints and the surrounding tissues. This inflammation leads to joint swelling, redness and ultimately pain in the affected area.

The over 100 different arthritic conditions have differing underlying reasons for the disease. The root causes of arthritis vary and it is very important so that your physician identify the exact cause of your condition so that appropriate treatment can begin. With the impact on your body, and the invasion arthritis makes on the joints, muscles and connective tissues the ravaging changes can seriously impact your daily life.

A chronic disease, most types of arthritis last a lifetime. From the time of diagnosis, those diagnosed with arthritis must learn to effectively manage and live with this disease. There is currently no cure for arthritis, which is even more reason why effective and aggressive management is crucial.

Arthritis symptoms typically ebb and flow so that there are times of more active disease and other times of less active disease, often referred to a flare. The times in which the arthritis flares it will indeed get your attention and demand action. The goal is to do everything that you can to keep it under control so that flares are few and far between.

Yes, unfortunately there is currently no cure for arthritis which is one of the saddest thoughts of all. It also makes it very challenging since there is no clear evidence as to the exact cause of disease onset.

So until there is a cure, an active life does not have to be a fantasy only. It just means that you may have to make other choices in life and adaptations to how you do certain things in order to feel your very best.

Arthritis is most certainly a challenging disease with which to live. But it is not something that should cause you to lose hope. There are millions fighting this battle on a daily basis who are living full and active lives.

It really is all about the choices you make and your willingness to be intimately involved in your healthcare management. Arthritis must be effectively managed and you have to be a dedicated team player if you plan to win this one.

Rheumatoid Arthritis - Early Symptoms & What to Look Out For


Rheumatoid arthritis is a debilitating disease. Its onset and symptoms vary from person to person, but the distinguishing feature is joint pain, particularly in the hands, wrists, and feet. Unfortunately, these symptoms can be a bit vague, so in the early stages, it can be difficult to determine whether or not you have arthritis, and/or what kind of arthritis you are suffering from.

It is important to recognize rheumatoid arthritis early symptoms so you can see a doctor quickly and form a plan of action before the disease has progressed too far.

Rheumatoid Arthritis Early Symptoms...

- Warmth, redness, and tenderness around the joints.
- Limited range of motion in one or more of your joints.
- Sudden onset of flu-like symptoms accompanied by joint pain. The flu will eventually go away but the pain persists and gradually gets worse.
- Feeling stiff upon getting up or rising in the morning. As the disease progresses, this stiffness will go from lasting a few minutes to lasting nearly all day.
- A period of chronic joint pain followed by remission. Often, symptoms will disappear entirely for weeks or months, only to return even worse than before. If you have been experiencing severe joint pain that suddenly disappears, don't simply forget about it! Seek medical help even if you're not in pain, because the symptoms may return soon.
- General fatigue and malaise. This is usually a precursor to joint pain. It does not go away and may worsen with time.
- Symmetrical joint pain. Instead of pain in one hand, you'll experience pain in both hands symmetrically. This is one of the rheumatoid arthritis early symptoms that distinguishes the illness from other arthritic ailments.
- Loss of appetite, weakness, muscle aches, anemia, and fever are some other common symptoms. These can lead to confusion and a possible misdiagnosis if other symptoms are not taken into consideration.

Ganoderma As an Alternative Treatment For Arthritis


Arthritis is a condition characterized by joint pain and swelling. This disease is commonly manifested by people in the ages of 40 to 60 and is highly predominant among women. Rheumatoid arthritis usually affects the small joints in the human body such as the hands, feet and wrists. The hallmark symptom would include joint stiffness and swelling in the morning. A person suffering from arthritis may have difficulty in grasping things, writing, walking, dressing, etc.

The use of herbal therapies has long been employed in the Asian regions. Japan, China and India have practiced herbal treatments through the years to cure diseases. Popularly known as reishi or ling zhi, Ganoderma lucidum is a leathery mushroom plant that has been used in Asian medicine for centuries. It is among the Orient's best elixirs. Here are some health benefits of Ganoderma:

It works systemically through the cell level.
It strengthens the human body's immunity and thus helps it fight off diseases and other infections.
It is believed to calm the mind and reduce stress.
It can be used by individuals on all ages from children to pregnant women.
It contains anti-aging elements that is helpful for maintaining that youthful glow.

Ganoderma is used as an alternative therapy for arthritis, insomnia, diabetes, gastric ulcers, hypertension and allergic reactions. According to recent studies, Ganoderma has immune modulating and anti-inflammatory properties that is perfect for treating autoimmune and chronic inflammatory disorders. Ganoderma is believed to reduce pain and swelling. It also helps modify autoimmune reactions in cases of rheumatoid arthritis. Ganoderma lucidum herb has been proven to improve and intensify the alpha and gamma interferon in the body. This can effectively regulate your immune system.

How Ganoderma is used

The herb itself is very bitter and tough. In plain form it is frankly inedible. Because of this, those who want to experience the health benefits of ganoderma can do so in a number of ways be ingested in the body in several ways: via supplements or beverages such as healthy ganoderma coffees and teas. While easiest to buy products that are already ganoderma enriched, there is also a way to make an herb tincture out of boiling the mushroom. Ling zhi mushrooms are commercially available in the market these days in dried powder form, syrup, capsules, tea and tinctures.

You can make your own herb tincture by boiling 翻 ounce of dried Ganoderma mushroom in 3 cups of water. Be sure to chop the mushroom into tiny pieces. Let the chopped mushroom sit in cold water for 3 to 4 hours even before boiling it. Use cold water when soaking the herb to make sure all the nutrients are absorbed properly. Slowly bring the mixture into boil. Let the solution simmer for about 45 minutes and then cool down to adequate drinking temperature. With the use of a metal strainer or coffee filter paper, strain the entire mixture. Be sure to store your Ganoderma herb drink in a covered glass jar inside the refrigerator.

Ganoderma is indeed one of the best options for treating arthritis the natural way!

Emotional Stress and Ankylosing Spondylitis Symptoms


There is a clear and direct connection between stress and autoimmune disorders such as Ankylosing Spondylitis. Painful or repressed emotions put stress on the body, but natural methods of stress relief can help reverse the pain and symptoms of Ankylosing Spondylitis.

Recently, a client of mine who has Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS) had an enlightening "aha" moment when she suddenly realized her autoimmune symptoms raged out of control whenever she had an argument with her adult son.

Until then she had never recognized stress as an issue for her AS pain and symptoms. Now she clearly gets it. She has come to realize that as her stress ramps up, so do the chronic pain and symptoms of Ankylosing Spondylitis, an autoimmune disorder similar to Rheumatoid Arthritis.

This is a common for my clients, and I see it frequently. A considerable aspect of my work involves helping clients identify and eradicate the mental and emotional triggers that worsen the pain and symptoms of AS.

Think about it. When you suppress your guilt, anger, resentment, and other difficult emotions... can it make you sick?

The latest medical studies overwhelmingly conclude that yes, negative emotions do affect our health. Toxic emotions significantly compromise immune function, and mental stress weakens our built-in defenses against premature aging and disease.

Stress and stress-related illnesses account for over 90% of the issues that patients report to their doctors. This means that, in a very real sense, our thoughts and emotions hold the key to our physical health.

For example, medical studies conclude that stress can disrupt the normal function of the human digestive system. Mental and emotional stress can cause loss of appetite, ravenous eating binges, and alter the proper absorption and elimination of nutrients. Alleviating the mental and emotional stress that causes these problems will usually result in restoration of proper gastrointestinal function.

If you suffer from and inflammatory bowel disease such as Crohn's Disease or ulcerative colitis, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), or other GI tract disorder, alarm bells should be sounding off in your head. Let me repeat: Reverse your stress and toxic emotions, and you'll restore proper gastrointestinal function.

Study after study proves that what we think and feel has a profound effect on our health. Here is the good news: Tests conclude that patients who expect positive results from their medical treatments are more likely to have them.

Stress relief helps to reverse the pain and symptoms related to autoimmune disorders including Ankylosing Spondylitis, Rheumatoid Arthiritis, Crohn's Disease, irritable bowel syndrome, and many others.

Arthritis Treatment: Evolution of Treatment for Rheumatoid Arthritis Today


Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is the most common form of inflammatory arthritis, affecting approximately two million Americans. It is a chronic, systemic, autoimmune driven disease for which there is no cure.

Among the multisystem features of the disease is the ability to attack and destroy not only joint tissue, but also other organ systems such as the eye, bone marrow, lungs, peripheral nervous system as well as heighten the incidence of cardiovascular events such as heart attack and stroke.

While the disease, if not diagnosed and treated aggressively, can still cause significant problems, major advances in treatment have developed in the last 25 years.

The drug of choice remains methotrexate. We now have more than 30 years of experience with this medication and are familiar with its side effect profile which is much more benign than we used to believe.

Roughly, 25% to 30% of patients will go into remission or near remission on methotrexate alone, and many of those patients will sustain that response for up to a year or more.

So how is response defined?

Response occurs when a patient has no clinical signs of disease activity, no elevated acute phase reactants, which are blood tests that measure inflammation. The two most commonly used tests are the erythrocyte sedimentation rate ("sed rate") and CRP. And they have no functional deficit from their disease.

In patients who don't achieve remission or lose their remission, we now add on a tumor necrosis factor (TNF) inhibitor. These are a category of biologic drugs. These medicines that act like a laser beam against the immunologic disturbances that are responsible for RA.

While many patients respond to the combination of methotrexate and TNF inhibitor, some either don't respond initially or lose their response over time. In these patients we will try a second TNF inhibitor.

Fortunately, there are alternatives. We have three other biologic medicines that are all useful in the event a patient fails two TNF inhibitors. There is Orencia, which is a T-cell costimulatory modulator. T cells are felt to be a key player in the inflammation of RA. The second is Rituxan. This is a drug that was initially used to treat non-Hodgkins lymphoma. It is an antibody directed against B-cells, which are also a major contributor to chronic inflammation in RA. Finally, there is Actemra, which is an antibody drug directed against the interleukin-6 receptor.

Interleukin-6 is a protein messenger that is pivotal in perpetuating RA activity.

All of these have been shown to be effective in rheumatoid arthritis, and all have been shown to be effective in patients who have failed a TNF inhibitor.

With this arsenal of drugs there is better than a 50 per cent chance of getting a patient with new-onset RA into remission within six to twelve months.

And the good news is that newer therapies are being developed that may be even more effective.

Hand Arthritis - The 3 Different Types Of The Disease


Arthritis of the hand is one of the more common forms of arthritis. Because the hand contains many joints, the risk of having hand arthritis is higher than in other parts of the body. It is composed of two bones on each forearm, and nineteen bones on the hand excluding another additional eight smaller bones.

The most common kinds of hand arthritis are: post-traumatic (arthritis which occurs as a result of someone having an accident), rheumatoid and osteoarthritis.

Post-Traumatic Hand Arthritis

Post-traumatic is usually associated with pain as the hand went through possible pressure that caused inflammation. This usually goes away after a while as the swelling subsides, although in some cases where the trauma was severe therapy or even hand surgery may be required.

Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis of the hand is another type which becomes more likely to happen as old age nears. People 40 years old and above are the most common victims of hand osteoarthritis. Some studies suggest low levels of Vitamin K as a probable cause of osteoarthritis.

This is a degenerative condition, and years after diagnosis it may often deform the hand making movement more difficult, making simple chores using the hand more complicated.

The joint called carpal-metacarpal, found in the thumb is frequently the part people with osteoarthritic hands complain of. The small bones between each finger with cartilages covering the bone become irregular.

Rheumatoid

Another kind of hand arthritis is the more complex rheumatoid arthritis. Here the synovial tissues of the hand affect the bone that is enclosed by a cartilage. The inflammation in the tissue hampers what is normally a fluid movement of the joint.

Those who suffer from rheumatoid arthritis of the hand usually also endure arthritis in different parts of the body. Like osteoarthritis it is also more common to people with old age as this comes from exertion of joints accumulated through the years.

The knuckles and the wrist are the common victims of this pain. Tendon fissure may also be amassed after a while of living with its symptoms. This may also deform the hand if inflammation spreads through the ligaments around the tissue.

Rheumatoid arthritis differs among patients. Others suffer from this only for short periods of time and then lose all symptoms altogether while others go through with its consequent pain endlessly with the pain flaring at times. Some subsequently develop into permanent damage that disables them forever.

Symptoms Of Hand Arthitis

Nagging pain in the hand is the first symptom of hand arthritis. Swelling is also an accompaniment together with difficult movement. Mundane tasks such as grabbing or pinching becomes difficult. A squeaking sound may also be noticed and the misshapen hand becomes apparent.

A thorough evaluation by an orthopedic doctor that will assess the severity of the hand should be established. The physician usually subjects the patient to an x-ray and blood test if soreness is evident.

Possible Cures For Hand Arthritis

There is no single cure for hand arthritis that ultimately could eliminate the disease and prevent it from re-occurring. The most frequent solution is pain relievers prescribed by doctors to ease the suffering of the patient. There are those that require anti-inflammatory medications often already present in those pain killers. Steroids taken orally can also be another form while others require injections of corticortisone of the area affected by arthritis.

There are also specialists called rheumatologists who can closely monitor your medication and therapy to give you instructions on the proper management of your arthritis. This could be great as he can cater directly to what drugs or exercise your arthritis pain is most comfortable with.

Another way to deal with arthritis is through surgery. This is recommended for those who suffer from advanced stages of arthritis. There are different kinds of surgery for different types of arthritic problems.

Hand surgeons fix tendon fissures through grafting or through transferring tendons to the damaged area. Joint lining extraction, synthesis, replacements may be performed. In extreme cases bone removal may be needed. This just goes to show that hand arthritis is a serious condition, so if you suspect that you may have it, you should take action as soon as possible.

Rheumatoid Arthritis - Ayurvedic Herbal Treatment


Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic disease which usually affects middle aged persons, and is seen more in women than in men. Children too, may get affected. In this disease, the synovial membrane, or the covering tissue of the joints gets swollen, resulting in stiffness, pain and limitation of movement. In severe conditions, the joints may ultimately become deformed. A disturbed immune function is believed to be responsible for this disease.

In Ayurveda, rheumatoid arthritis is known as "Sandhi Vata". This is not to be confused with "Aam Vata" which is the name given to Rheumatic Fever, or the fever which causes pain and swelling in joints and also affect the heart.

Rheumatoid arthritis of recent origin usually responds well to standard anti-inflammatory treatment. However, by nature this is a chronic disease, and while symptoms can be controlled, there is presently no cure. Standard modern medicine may not be very helpful once the condition becomes chronic, or treatment may have significant side effects. It is in such patients that Ayurvedic herbal treatment may be very useful and effective. One major advantage of Ayurvedic herbal medicines in such an affliction is that medicines may be taken for long periods without any serious side-effects.

Ayurvedic treatment of rheumatoid arthritis consists of the following procedures:
(i) "Snehan" ( use of local and oral medicated lubricants)
(ii) "Swedan" (local fomentation)
(iii) "Lep" (Local application of medications)
(iv) "Anuloman" ( mild laxative treatment for prolonged periods)
(v) "Raktamokshan" (blood letting)
(vi) "Dahan" (local heat branding ) and
(vii) "Shaman" ( symptomatic oral treatment).

Mahanarayan oil( containing mainly Asparagus racemosus), Bala (Sida cordifolia) oil, Vishgarbha oil are some of the medications used for snehan procedures. While local application is quite simple, oral use of medicated lubricants is best done under the direct supervision of a qualified and experienced Ayurvedic practitioner.

While local fomentation can be done in several ways, "Naadi swedan" is the most effective. In this procedure, a jet of medicated steam is directed at the affected joints, usually after the snehan procedure. A decoction of Nirgundi (Vitex negundo) is usually used for this procedure.

Local medicated applications include Lepgoli, Dashang lep, and a mixture of Shrung, Daruharidra ( Berberis aristata), Alum, and Rakta Chandan (Santalum album). Several medicated herbal ointments are also available.

Local pain can be immediately reduced by blood-letting. This can be done by syringe or using leeches. About 50 ml. of blood is usually withdrawn from a vein near the affected joint. Local heat branding is used by some physicians to reduce acute tenderness of the joints. Various special metal instruments are used for this procedure.

Castor oil and Haritaki (Terminalia chebula) treated with castor oil are used for mild, prolonged laxative treatment.

Oral medications include Maharasnadi decoction, Triphala Guggulu, Yograj Guggulu and Ashwagandharishta. Shallaki (Boswellia serrata) and Guggulu (Commiphora mukul) compounds are given for prolonged periods. Multiple herbal compounds containing Guggulu are available, which are used according to the presenting symptoms and the staging of the disease as done by the Ayurvedic practitioner.

It is advisable to avoid very sour, salty and cold (refrigerated) food products, as also fermented products. Using tolerable amounts of ginger and garlic in the daily diet is helpful. Some yogic asanas have been found to be useful in arthritis, and may be performed regularly under the supervision and advice of an expert in this field.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis


Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic autoimmune disease, which accompanies inflammation of the joints and noticeable deformities. Some agent, possibly a virus, induces an attack on the synovium that releases cytokines, which stimulate an inflammatory reaction. This can lead to the devastation of all the components of the joint. The signs and symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis are fever, firm bumps of tissue under the rheumatoid nodules, increased fatigue, joint pain, joint swelling (particularly in the smaller joints of the hands and feet), tenderness of joints, stiffness in the morning that continues to exist at least 30 minutes, red and puffy hands, weakness, and weight loss. Generally, the individuals can feel the pain, especially, after their sleep or after the periods of rest. Some other symptoms like lack of appetite, loss of body weight, loss of movement of the affected joints, loss of power in the muscles connected to the affected joints, low-level temperature especially during nigh, and malformation of the affected joints over a period of time. Anemia, dry eyes, dry mouth, malaise, neck pain, and tiredness have also been noted in many cases.

Initially, the signs and symptoms come out in smaller joints. Usually, the rheumatoid arthritis stimulates problems in various joints at the same time. Early rheumatoid arthritis attends to affect the smaller joints (the joints in the ankles, feet, hands, and wrists) first. As the disease progresses, the pain would spread to the elbows, hips, jaw, knees, neck, and shoulders. The signs and symptoms of a rheumatoid arthritis can change in severity and it may even appear and disappear. The stages of maximized disease activity are known as flare-ups or simply flares. Rheumatoid arthritis flares reciprocate with periods of relative subsidence. During this period, the difficulty sleeping, pain, swelling, and weakness deteriorate or disappear.

Rheumatoid arthritis not only stimulates distortion and inflammation of the joints but also has an effect on the organs and tissue. The muscles, tissues, and tendons adjoining the joints may also develop inflammation. Rheumatoid arthritis affected individuals often suffer from symmetrical symptoms on both the sides of the body. Even though any joint perhaps affected, most usually, the joints present in the arms, fingers, legs, and wrists are affected. The individuals with rheumatoid arthritis may experience systemic pain - that is pain felt all around the body.

The disease is usually comes between the age of 20 and 45; however, it can also target the young children and the adults older than 50 years. It is very common in women (about 3/4 of women population). The exact cause of this disease is unknown. Researches reveal that the risk of this disease is increased by nearly 50% in cigarette and cigar smoking individuals. If anyone notices any of the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, consult a physician immediately.

Real Help for Rheumatoid Arthritis


Rheumatoid Arthritis is a crippling inflammatory condition that causes deterioration of the joints, especially of the hands, feet and knees. It generally affects both sides of the body simultaneously. Persons can be known to be fine one day in an area, yet be troubled by that joint the next day. Now there is real help with alternative healing methods.

The symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis are varied:

-aching and stiffness in a joint

-loss of range of motion in the affected joint

-the muscles near the joint are weakened

-joint deformity as the joint deteriorates

-rheumatoid nodules that form under the skin near the joint

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease resulting from a weakened immune system, resulting in the tissues and joints being attacked by the persons own body. If left untreated the joint breaks down and becomes destroyed over time. The need for joint replacement surgery is about the only thing that a person can do if this happens.

Alternative medicine for rheumatitis can help to rebuild and restore damaged joints and also remove the pain of inflammation that is caused by too much arachidonic acid in the body. A small change in diet, according to Dr. Floyd Chilton in his book entitled "Winning the War Within" which includes a minimum of 4 to 5 servings of the right seafood or cold water fish a week, along with enough omega 3 oil;(at least 600mg.) and 600 mg. to 1000 mg. borage oil per day will help eradicate this debilitating condition. The condition, if left untreated, will only get worse. Joints will continue to deteriorate until bone is touching bone; the pain becoming unbearable.

Fortunately there is real help out there for arthritis sufferers. As you can see, there are many natural food supplements that can help with this condition and perhaps leave you pain free.

Differences Between Rheumatoid Arthritis and Osteoarthritis


Osteoarthritis and rheumatoid are two of the most common forms of arthritis, and it is important to differentiate between the two.

What is Rheumatoid Arthritis?

Rheumatoid arthritis is more widespread, affecting thousands of individuals worldwide. This disease is primarily an inflammatory condition that affects the tissue that covers the joints throughout the human body. Over time, the inflammation can gradually spread to the major organs of the human body and has the potential to become a debilitating condition.

Historically, scientific research has attempted to identify the specific cause of rheumatoid arthritis, but a definite cause has yet to be discovered. Currently, the culprit is believed to be a genetic factor that predisposes an individual to the disease. Certain events are also believed to trigger its symptoms.

Rheumatoid arthritis can be treated with a number of medications, such as NSAIDs or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, as well as DMARDs or disease modifying anti-rheumatic drugs, both of which can be prescribed by a qualified physician. Popular examples of such medicines are Methotrexate, Enbrel, Arava, Celebrax, and numerous others. Although these drugs have been known to produce positive results, it is also imperative to bear in mind that these products have been reported to trigger negative side effects that can impair rather than improve one's condition.

What is Osteoarthritis?

Osteoarthritis is more prevalent among older patients, as this condition results from the wear and tear of the joints brought about by age. In osteoarthritis, the cartilage's water component increases, whereas its protein component decreases. Constant stress or use of the joints, such as being overweight or contracting joint injury, can also trigger this disease. In addition, such factors as joint infections, pregnancy, hormonal disorders, diabetes, and others can lead to osteoarthritis. Treatment can range from localized injections of hyaluronan and glucocorticoid to surgical joint replacement procedures.

Symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis and Osteoarthritis

The symptoms of Osteoarthritis and Rheumatoid Arthritis can help patients differentiate between these two types of arthritis.

For example, if both sides of the joint are affected, and if the joint appears to be inflamed as indicated by a distinctive swelling or reddening in color, the disease is most likely rheumatoid arthritis. In such cases, the patient typically experiences some fever, fatigue, and a sensation of stiffness throughout the body that lasts for 15 minute intervals or more. Different types of vasculitis, or a condition in which the veins and arteries are affected, can also develop as a consequence of rheumatoid arthritis. Additionally, people with this disease have a higher risk of getting a heart attack or a stroke.

Also common among rheumatoid arthritic patients are renal amyloidosis and fibrosis of the lungs. Inflammation of the kidney and the lungs are direct or indirect targets of rheumatoid arthritis.

In contrast, osteoarthritis does not target the organs of the human body. In the majority of cases, osteoarthritis only occurs as a result of old age.

It is extremely crucial for arthritic patients to distinguish between these two types of arthritis. Knowing which type of arthritis one suffers from will lead a person to get the appropriate treatment for his/her condition. As always, consulting a physician is imperative for a more definite diagnosis and subsequent treatment. A qualified doctor can prescribe the necessary medication and therefore point you to the right direction. In case of side effects from the use of prescribed drugs, contacting your doctor immediately is a must.

The Relationship Between Rheumatoid Arthritis and Your Immune System


Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease. An autoimmune disease is when our immune system turns on the body that hosts it and systematically tries to destroy it by attacking healthy body tissue such as the joints (rheumatoid arthritis), muscles (fibromyalgia), pancreas (type 1 diabetes) or nerves (multiple sclerosis).

Think of the immune system as a huge army of white blood cells ready to defend our body against attack by outside invaders such as germs, bacteria, viruses and parasites (also known as antigens) It does this by producing antibodies which fight against these external parasites. Rheumatoid Arthritis is caused by our immune system mistakenly identifying our joints as external parasites (antigens), causing it to attack and destroy the tissues that line bone joints and cartilage. This as we know causes pain and inflammation. So why does this happen?

It's because our immune system is compromised. Our modern lifestyle puts more and more stress on our immune system. Drugs, infections, smoking, hormone inbalances, lack of exercise and stress all play a role, whereas our diets do nothing to help. No wonder our immunity is struggling to cope!

A healthy immune system is vital for a healthy and vigorous life. More and more these days we are hearing of the increase of autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, multiple sclerosis, guillain-barre syndrome and type 1 diabetes. If medical science has taken such great strides in the research and discovery of breakthrough knowledge and medicines, why do we seem to be getter sicker and sicker by the year?

Well conventional medicine focus more on treating the symptoms rheumatoid arthritis, than focusing on the prevention and possible cure of this debilitating disease. The side effects of medical drugs used to treat rheumatoid arthritis can be quite severe. Is there any way out? Alternative medicine and natural cures for arthritis can help cure rheumatoid arthritis at the source.

Of course there are many options in alternative medicine for alleviating pain, but the main aim is to deal with the cause of arthritis which in most cases is a weak immune system. So what's the best thing we can do to strengthen our immune systems?

Get sufficient sleep - There's nothing more draining on the immune system than a sleep deprived body. Everyone has different sleep needs, make sure you're getting enough sleep time for you.

Improve your diet - This is one of the best ways to give your immunity a boost! We can use up a lot of energy just digesting the foods we eat. Eat plenty of fresh foods and cut down on junk and processed foods.

Take a supplement - Mainstream medicine is fond of telling us that food alone can give us all the nutrients we need. Well it probably could if we knew what to eat and in what quantities.

Added to the fact that we're not all nutrition experts, our soils are depleted of natural nutrients owing to over-cultivation, chemical fertilizers and pesticides. Our food is sometimes stored for months in cold storage, allowing nutrients to leak out. Just take a supplement!

Get plenty of exercise - You knew I was going to say that, didn't you? Exercise increases oxygen into the bloodstream, releases endorphins, the "feel-good" hormones and helps to build the muscles that support your joints.

This has been a very brief venture into the ways to boost our immune health to help prevent or alleviate autoummune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis. The spin-offs are fewer diseases like cold and flu and more energy to do the things we enjoy.

Arthritis Pain and Stiffness Eased by Cleansing, Nutrition and Self Acceptance!


Conventional medicine treats arthritis symptoms, not underlying causes, but you can do better than that.

Most doctors consider arthritis to be an autoimmune disease that triggers inflammation, stiffness and pain. There are many variations including tendinitis, rheumatoid, fibromyalgia, lupus, osteoarthritis, and gout. Over-the-counter and prescription drugs focus on treating symptoms, but all drugs have negative side-effects. At the bare minimum, since drugs must be processed by your liver, they'll put a strain on this already overworked organ.

What causes arthritis and can it be helped by natural remedies?

Since the resources of our modern health system have focused on treating symptoms with drugs for so long, no one knows for certain what causes arthritis pain and other symptoms for every person.

However, over the years a body of knowledge has built up that can help ease symptoms naturally and address what appear to be underlying causes.

The best natural remedies start with internal cleansing to remove built-up toxins, with the next step being improved nutrition - eating foods known for their healing effects. The third significant factor, and it could very well be the most important, is to take an honest look at the body-mind connection to your stiffness and pain.

What does 'body-mind connection' mean? There is an important connection between your emotional state and the state of your body's health. Some practitioners believe that a lack of acceptance and love for ourselves is the main factor behind all disease and discomforts.

If you have arthritis, or any condition, ask yourself what was going on in your life in the one to two years before you developed symptoms? Are you open and flexible to considering new ideas, or are you closed and judgmental?

Arthritis has a significant body-mind connection - between how rigidly you view yourself, your life and others and how your body manifests these rigid attitudes in pain and stiffness. Notice what happens as you develop a softer, more accepting opinion of yourself and others and cultivate a more positive outlook on life. If you suffer from osteoarthritis you probably have a tendency to feel victimized and blame others for your unhappiness. Osteoarthritis can indicate that you are feeling unloved and criticized. Instead of looking outside yourself for happiness, love and validation, practice being more loving and accepting of yourself.

If you've had arthritis for years, the contributing factor of a build-up of waste (toxins) in your body's tissues can be removed through nutritional cleansing which, over time, may provide a significant easing of stiffness and pain as your body systems normalize.

Once you've removed toxins through cleansing, you can find noticeable improvement if you practice these 10 healthy eating habits:

*Eat more whole, raw, unprocessed foods.

*Switch to fresh, local, organically grown foods to clear impurities.

*Juice fresh celery and carrots with a few sprigs of fresh parsley and drink daily to neutralize wastes circulating in your system.

*Ginger has strong anti-inflammatory properties, but take the extract with food to avoid potential heartburn. Dose: 1 tsp fresh root or 1 g. powdered root added to food. Or steep two tbsp. freshly shredded ginger for 15 minutes to make a potent tea.

*Curcumin reduces inflammation and enhances the effects of anti-inflammatory medications. It is the active ingredient in Turmeric, which is used to make curry. Use 1 tsp in your food every day.

*Take a balanced blend of Omega 3-6-9 oils every day to help manage arthritis symptoms. Omega-3 fats from fish and fish oil supplements lower inflammation to reduce joint stiffness. Take 1 g. EPA/DHA oil supplement daily. Increase your consumption of fatty fish and omega-3 eggs. Stop taking the oil two weeks before having surgery.

*Supplement with Vitamin D! A recent study found that women whose diets were highest in vitamin D had the lowest incidence of rheumatoid arthritis. Vitamin D helps balance the immune system. In northern climates between mid-October and the end of March, supplement with 1000 IU daily.

*Colorful berries - blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, cranberries and two other foods - acai berries and cherries act like aspirin in their anti-inflammatory abilities. Eat as many as you want, unless you have a history of kidney stones, in which case, avoid them.

*Eat more fresh pineapple which contains bromelain, a compound with anti-inflammatory properties.

*Take a good quality probiotic supplement to improve your digestive health.

Note: Consult with your doctor if you take blood thinners like warfarin or Coumadin before using ginger, curcumin and Omega 3-6-9 oils daily.

An arthritis-friendly diet avoids these foods:

*Canned salmon and tuna - acids in these foods react with acids in metal

*White rice, milk, dairy products, red meat, caffeine, citrus fruits, paprika, salt, tobacco and everything that contains sugar.

*Nightshade vegetables (peppers, eggplant, tomatoes, white potatoes). These foods contain a substance called solanine, to which some people, particularly those suffering from arthritis, are highly sensitive. Solanine interferes with enzymes in the muscles and may cause pain and discomfort.

*Iron supplements, or a multivitamin containing iron. Iron is suspected of being involved in pain, swelling and joint destruction. Consume iron in foods instead. Good sources include blackstrap molasses, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, fish, lima beans and peas.

*Acid-forming foods which damage nerve tissues such as:

* Manmade and processed foods

* White wine

* Coffee

* Orange juice

* White flour

* Animal proteins

Other important strategies for easing or eliminating arthritis:

*Get regular moderate exercise, which is essential for reducing pain and retarding joint deterioration. Regular activity that does not put stress on affected joints, but strengthens surrounding bones, muscles and ligaments is valuable for many types of arthritis. Bicycle riding, walking, Tai Chi and water exercises are good choices. Avoid running, weight-bearing or impact exercises.

*Do an activity you love such as swimming, a hobby or interacting with people who are joyful.

*Learn how to do Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) to neutralize energy blocks in your body. Work with an experienced practitioner for maximum benefit.

*Choose and use positive affirmations several times a day. E.g. "I am loved. I now choose to love and approve of myself. I see others with love." (From Louise Hay's book "You Can Heal Your Life").

*Honor and value yourself by making your well being a priority every day.

*Simplify your life - get your priorities straight.

*Resolve whatever conflict is stealing your energy and enthusiasm for life.

*Look for and accept the lesson from everything that happens to you - 'good' or 'bad'.

*Forgive others for what they did or should have done.

*Most of all forgive yourself.

Causes of High White Blood Cell Count


There are several possible causes for a high white blood cell count. This count is high when there are more disease-fighting cells in your body. The technical term for this condition is leukocytosis.

Different medical practices may have different limits by which they define high white blood cell count. A count of 10,500 leukocytes in one microliter of blood is widely accepted as a high count. The threshold may vary between sex and age.

White blood cells are categorized by five subtypes, and each type has a different activity in fighting disease. When you get the results of your white blood cell count, they will usually specify what the levels are of all the different types. Usually, a high count is only caused by an increase in one type of white blood cells.

A high white blood cell count is indicative of an immune system problem that increases their production; a disease in your bone marrow that causes high blood cell production; a reaction to some drug that is used to enhance cell production; or the increase expected when your body is fighting off an infection.

There are some more specific reasons why your white blood cell count may be high:

Acute lymphocytic leukemia (ALL) is a cancer that lives in the bone marrow and blood. This disease is a rapidly progressive one. Children are more affected by this than any other type of cancer, although adults can develop the disease as well.

Drugs like epinephrine and corticosteroids can affect your white cell count.

Measles is an infection that affects mainly the respiratory tract. It is very contagious. The signs include skin rash, fever, sore throat, inflamed eyes, runny nose and cough. The measles vaccine is an excellent way to protect children against this disease, but outside of the civilized countries, many children are not vaccinated. This disease will spread rapidly among people who have not had the vaccination.

Rheumatoid arthritis is a serious type of arthritis from which you will experience joint damage and pain. It attacks your joints' lining and this causes swelling. In turn, that leads to throbbing, aching pain and possibly eventual deformity. Rheumatoid arthritis, also called RA, can make even the easiest of normal activities hard to accomplish.

Some of the other causes of high white blood cell count include:

Stress, be it emotional or physical
Smoking
Tuberculosis
Tissue damage, like one receives with burns
Acute or chronic myelogenous leukemia
Chronic or acute lymphocytic leukemia
Whooping cough
Severe allergic reactions
Myelofibrosis
Polycythemia vera
Other viral infections
Other bacterial infections