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Finally, although they are not a long-term solution, the herbs that follow are useful for treating the symptoms of inflammation and relieving pain while you work at implementing the lifestyle changes above:
- Boswellia: Also known as boswellin or “Indian frankincense,” this herb contains specific active anti-inflammatory ingredients, referred to as boswellic acids that animal studies have shown significantly reduce inflammation. This is one of my personal favorites as I have seen it work well with rheumatoid arthritis patients
- Bromelain: This enzyme, found in pineapples, is a natural anti-inflammatory. It can be taken in supplement form, but eating fresh pineapple may also be helpful.
- Ginger: This herb is anti-inflammatory and offers pain relief and stomach-settling properties. Fresh ginger works well steeped in boiling water as a tea or grated into vegetable juice. Powder capsules are also available, but I recommend using the fresh root.
- Resveratrol: Resveratrol is a potent antioxidant found in certain fruits, vegetables and cocoa that is emerging as a modern-day fountain of youth. It works by preventing your body from creating sphingosine kinase and phospholipase D — two molecules known to trigger inflammation. The science surrounding this compound is so compelling that it has become one of my all-time favorite antioxidants, and I believe one that shows real promise of health benefits.
- Evening Primrose, Black Currant and Borage Oils: These contain the essential fatty acid gamma linolenic acid (GLA), which is useful for treating arthritic pain. It is reasonable for many to take these as a supplement, particularly if you struggle with dry skin in the winter, as this is a strong indicator that you are deficient in these fats.
- Turmeric, Tulsi and Rosemary: The transcription protein Nuclear Factor-kappa Beta (NfKB) is a major inducer of inflammation, and these three herbs are capable of modulating NfKB.