There's been much talk about the effectiveness of turmeric for relieving arthritis pain, and quite a number of those taking it either in capsule or liquid form are finding that it does work. However, some people can't tolerate taking the recommended daily dose of this spice because it irritates their stomachs therefore they need to find an alternative. While there are other herbs and supplements that help ease arthritis pain, stinging nettle (Urtica dioica) has been taken internally or applied externally for hundreds of years to successfully treat arthritis and gout.
The mode of action, when taken internally, is to cleanse uric acid from the joints thereby relieving the inflammation. When used externally, a lotion made from the leaves of the plant is applied to the affected area. Another form of external treatment involves whipping the stems and leaves against the inflamed joints — the sting creates irritation which draws the blood to the joint. This helps remove the inflammation, and while the sting is painful it does wear off and greatly reduces the original arthritis and gout pain.
When stinging nettle is juiced, cooked or made into a herbal remedy such as a tincture, the sting is neutralised. Cooking the leaves and including them in dishes such as mashed potato, soups, stews, and quiches is an easy way to take the herb internally. Apart from helping to ease arthritis and gout pain, stinging nettle is high in iron and packed full of other beneficial nutrients. Among herbalists, it's a well-known and very beneficial spring tonic.
Use strong gloves and wear a long-sleeve shirt as protection against being stung while harvesting and chopping the fresh herb.
Infusion of dried herb - 3 to 6 grams three times a day.
Other medicinal herbs that help ease arthritis pain include Boswellia, ginger, cat's claw, and celery seed, however stinging nettle is usually easy to obtain and is inexpensive.
Proprietor, author, and tutor of The Home Herbalist Online Course.