Easing Arthritis Symptoms with Supplements
Part of the Arthritis For Dummies Cheat Sheet (UK Edition)
Extensive research has shown that the following supplements are especially helpful in easing arthritis-related symptoms, especially pain and inflammation. Always consult your doctor before taking any supplements.
Bromelain: May reduce the swelling and pain of arthritis as effectively as an NSAID (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug). The recommended dose is 80 to 320 milligrams per day, divided into two or three doses.
Gamma linolenic acid (GLA): Helps decrease inflammation and pain, especially with rheumatoid arthritis. The recommended dose is 1 to 2 grams of GLA daily.
Ginger: Shown to reduce OA (osteoarthritis) knee pain, thanks to its analgesic, anti-inflammatory abilities. The recommended dose is 225 milligrams of highly purified ginger extract twice daily.
Glucosamine sulphate and chondroitin sulphate: Increases production of cartilage and the molecules that keep it moist and decreases cartilage breakdown, thereby easing the pain of osteoarthritis and even slowing its progression. The recommended dose is 500 milligrams of glucosamine and 400 milligrams of chondroitin, each taken three times daily.
Grapeseed extract: Eases arthritis pain and joint damage by fighting inflammation and preventing or repairing free radical damage to cells. The recommended dosage is 75 to 300 milligrams daily for three weeks and 40 to 80 milligrams daily for maintenance.
Niacin: Helps improve joint mobility in OA. The recommended dosage is 15 milligrams daily in the form of niacinamide. (Only take larger doses under the supervision of your doctor.)
Omega-3 fatty acids: Helps relieve the pain and inflammation seen in rheumatoid arthritis. Some suggest taking omega-3s containing 3 grams of DHA or EPA (types of fatty acid) daily.
Selenium: Helps fight free radical damage to the joints and surrounding tissues. The recommended dose is 100 to 200 micrograms daily.
Vitamin E: Fights pain and helps control free radical damage to joint tissues. The recommended dose is 400 to 800 international units daily.
Vitamin C: Works together with vitamin E against free radicals. Researchers have reported that vitamin C may help halt the progression of osteoarthritis, as well as decreasing OA pain. The suggested dose is 500 to 1,000 milligrams of vitamin C per day.