Dietary supplements are quite popular alternative and complementary treatments for people who have arthritis. However, they aren’t designed to cure, prevent, diagnose or treat diseases, as they only have some health benefits. The FDA regulates dietary ingredients and supplements, but there are different rules and regulations compared to conventional drugs. Some of these products have beneficial properties that help users control their inflammation.
It’s a special group of protein-dissolving enzymes found in the fruit and stem of pineapples. It’s famous for excellent anti-inflammatory effects that happen when it changes the activation and migration of white blood cells. As a herbal supplement, bromelain comes in capsules and tablets. A normal dose is up to 2,000 mg taken 3 times a day between regular meals.
It’s a tree originated in India, and its extract is derived from the gun resin of its bark. This extract is also called Indian frankincense, and this Ayurveda herb is known for analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties. Being a dietary supplement, Boswellia is available in capsules and standard pills, and a standard dose is 300-400 mg taken 3 times a day.
It’s an important component of human connective tissues in cartilage and bones. In dietary supplements, chondroitin is derived from pork by-products and bovine trachea. Its use relieves pain and offers anti-inflammatory effects. It also slows down the progression of osteoarthritis and improves joint functioning. You can take chondroitin as special powder, tablets and capsules, but not more than 1,200 mg a day (divided into 2-4 doses).
It’s derived from dried rot barks of one woody vine type originating in Amazon rain forests in different parts of South America. You can find it in tea bags, tablets, capsules and liquids in the modern market. A standard dose shouldn’t exceed 1,000 mg. This supplement has anti-inflammatory properties, because its intake inhibits tumor necrosis factor while stimulating the immune system.
It’s a perennial shrub growing in Southern Africa. It has red flowers, lush foliage and tiny hooks covering fruits. People named this shrub because of its appearance, and it has branching shoots and roots that can be both main and secondary. The latter ones are tubers, and they are famous for many health benefits, including anti-inflammatory and pain relieving. That’s why Devil’s claw helps users lower their uric acid and works as a digestive aid. You can take it in the form of liquids, capsules, powder and tincture. The right dose is up to 1,000 mg taken 3 times a day.
The flax plant has seeds that contain omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids. Some of their fat is concerted into DHA and EPA, which are active ingredients of fish oil. You can find flaxseeds in oils, capsules, flour and ground meal.
This supplement is derived from different oils of cold water fish, such as salmon, tuna, mackerel, cod, herring and others. It’s a great source of essential omega-3 fatty acids widely known for their anti-inflammatory effects that block prostaglandins and cytokines. They are available as soft gels and capsules. To treat rheumatoid arthritis, take 2 g of DHA and 3.8 g of EPA.
Gamma-linolenic acid is a certain omega-6 fatty acid found in plan seed oils, including borage, primrose and black currant oils. The human body can convert it into special anti-inflammatory chemicals. GLA is available as oil and in capsules, and users need to take 2-3 g each day.
It’s derived from fresh and dried roots of ginger plants and used because of its anti-inflammatory properties, similar to certain COX-2 inhibitors and NSAIDs. Ginger works by inhibiting chemicals promoting inflammation, and it comes as oils, extracts, capsules, tea and powder.
It’s an organic sulfur compound found in humans, fruits, animals, grains and vegetables naturally. It’s destroyed when food is processed, and that’s why people take MSM supplements to relieve their inflammation and pain associated with arthritis. They can take liquids, capsules, tablets and topical creams, and normal doses range from 1 g to 3 g a day (taken with meals).
Thunder God Vine
It’s derived from skinned roots of vine-like plants growing in Asia. This Chinese herbal remedy is taken to treat joint pain, inflammation and over-activity of people’s immune system.
It’s a chemical found in different foods, such as teas, onions, apples, berries and red wine. Quercetin can naturally occur in some herbs too, and it’s widely known for its anti-inflammatory properties. It works by blocking pro-inflammatory chemicals, including prostaglandins and leukotrienes.
It’s a lily-like and perennial shrub growing in Indonesia and India in addition to other tropical areas. Its roots belong to a ginger family, and they’re dried to yellow powder to be used in different curries, foods and Ayurveda. Turmeric is famous for its excellent anti-inflammatory properties, and it works by blocking inflammatory enzymes and cytokines. You can buy it in spices or capsules, and your usual dose is about 400-600 mg taken 3 times a day. If you choose powder, take 1-3 g a day.
Important Things about Anti-Inflammatory Supplements
Some people have a common misconception that all herbal supplements are safer compared to prescription drugs, but they are wrong. That’s because all the above-mentioned anti-inflammatory supplements have certain side effects, though they are herbal. It’s necessary to talk to doctors before taking any of them to be on a safe side. They’ll tell you more about possible side effects and drug interactions. Their possible beneficial effects deserve your attention, so use these supplements safely.