Also called gouty arthritis, gout is characterized either by too high or too low secretion of uric acid. When too much uric acid gets collected in the blood, the acid then crystallizes and gathers in the joint areas to cause gout. Sometimes, these deposits are so high that they form lumpy skin patches that are actually visible.
A gout spell typically lasts for 5-10 days, especially in the big toe where the condition can be so worse that even a bed sheet placed over the toe causes unbearable pain. Because gout is an inflammatory ailment, there are many anti-inflammatory drugs out there for its treatment. However, to have a treatment in which less intense and fewer side effects are experienced, the affected patients are also taking help of anti-gout herbs. While a few of these herbs are rich in anti-inflammatory properties, others help by regulating the levels of uric acid.
Despite the fact that there are not enough scientific studies to prove the effectiveness of these herbs, both patients and doctors have successfully experienced their efficacy. However, it is also true that although these herbal remedies may aid in treating gout, they may not guarantee a permanent result. Therefore, before you start using any of the below mentioned herbs for treating gout, do discuss about them with your doctor.
Herbal Remedies for Treating Gout
The University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC) suggests taking this herb for treating gout. Cat’s claw refers to a woody vine grown on a large scale in South and Central America. It has been found that this herb helps in reducing inflammation as well as in boosting immunity. As per an article in ‘Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice’, the herb tends to work by inhibiting the mediators causing inflammation. Cat’s claw can be consumed as a liquid extract, tea, or tablet.
Warning: Cat’s claw may trigger some side effects, including vomiting and headache in rare cases. It is not recommended for pregnant women or for those suffering from an immune disorder.
It is known to all that turmeric is used commonly as a spice. According to the findings of a study printed in the ‘Journal of Natural Products’ (2006), turmeric is rich in compounds called curcuminoids that help in averting inflammation in joints. Therefore, it is proposed that turmeric can also help in treating gout that is an inflammatory ailment.
Warning: Turmeric is safe to have but its long-term use can cause some side effects such as diarrhea. Further, patients of any gallbladder disease or who are taking anticoagulant drugs should avoid turmeric.
This is the recommended herb by Phyllis A. Balch who is a licensed nutritional consultant. According to him, a bilberry extract is rich in two antioxidant compounds namely, anthocyanidins and proanthocyanidins, which are powerful enough to treat gout.
This is another potent herbal remedy for the treatment of gout. Several herbalists have endorsed that the seeds of this plant are in use since ancient days for the treatment of gout and arthritis. The herb is rich in diuretic, sedative, and antioxidant properties that can treat the condition well.
Similarly, even parsley has the potential to alleviate the symptoms of gout, as it is rich in alkaline properties as per Dr. Theodore Baroody. Medically, alkaline foods aid in pushing back the uric acid from the blood as well as aiding the kidneys to discard the acid from the body.
It is said that consuming 6-8 fresh cherries on a daily basis help in reducing the gout symptoms. Dr. Ludwig W. Blau made this statement in 1950, the man who healed his own gout with this remedy. It has been found that cherries contain several potential compounds that avert damage of vital collagen required to make connective tissue that gets ruined by gout.
Apart from that, cherries are rich in anthocyanins, anti-inflammatory properties, and in an enzyme that neutralizes the acid. If you feel that the attack is about to hit you, do not hesitate in consuming 20-30 cherries instantly. For better results, eating cherries between meals is recommended.
This bitter herb is one of the traditional remedies used in the treatment of several inflammatory ailments, including gout. According to the practitioners, the herb has the power to trigger potent anti-inflammatory effects through its active ingredients named iridoid glycosides that are present in the tubers and roots of the plant.
Apart from acting as an anti-inflammatory herb, devil’s claw also plays the role of acid controller by alleviating the high levels of uric acid. According to the UMMC, taking 600 to 1,200mg of this herb containing 50 to 100mg of harpagoside thrice a day is effective.
Irrespective of dried or fresh, this herb reduces gout pain as well as joint inflammation, which is endorsed by the Georgetown University. It has been found that the root helps in discarding the surplus fluids from the joints and tissues of the body. You can consume fresh burdock root as a cooked vegetable, as a tea, or as a foot-soak remedy for getting rid of pain.
For preparing its tea, add two tablespoons of dried root in a bowl having four cups of water and boil it for 15 minutes. Now, let the mix cool down and then filter it. Drink this tea twice a day for better results. In order to use it as a foot-soak remedy, add its warm tea into a tub and immerse your feet for 20 minutes.
Warning: Burdock root can lead to skin rash and may work adversely if taken with diuretic medications.
Black Bean Broth
Extracted from beans, this herb is rich in anthocyanins, antioxidants, and nutrients all of which promise to bring relief to the gout sufferers. According to experts, black broth also has anti-inflammatory properties due to which a gout patient may experience instant relief from pain and swelling.
For preparing medicinal broth, add eight ounces of black beans in a vessel containing two quarts of water, boil the mix for 90 minutes, let it cool, and discard the beans for use in cooking. You can now sip one cup of this tea when you feel that the gout attack is about to hit! It is recommended to store the remaining mix in your refrigerator.