Arthritis Treatment by Ayurveda: A Holistic Approach

Ayurveda is an ancient system of medicine that has been practiced in India for over 5000 years. It is a holistic lifestyle approach that focuses on treating the body as a whole, rather than just treating the symptoms of a disease or disorder. One of the diseases that can be managed through Ayurveda is arthritis, and with its focus on natural remedies, arthritis treatment by Ayurveda can be an effective way to treat this autoimmune disorder and reduce pain and inflammation.

Ayurveda can help identify root causes of arthritis and restore balance. This article will discuss treatments used to manage the condition.

What is Arthritis in Ayurveda?

According to Ayurveda most pains in the human body are caused by the imbalance of Vata (air) dosha.

Arthritis is one such condition which is caused by the accumulation of Ama (undigested food byproduct) and imbalance of Vata.

In fact, Ama circulates in the whole body deposits at the sites which are weaker. And, when it deposits in the joints along with imbalanced Vata, it results in a disease called AmaVata.

And, this Amavata is arthritis!

Basic Rules of Arthritis treatment by Ayurveda

  1. Balance the doshas: Ayurveda believes that imbalances of the three doshas – Vata, Pitta and Kapha – may contribute to the symptoms of arthritis. It is important to restore the balance of the doshas for an effective treatment.
  2. Eat a balanced diet: Eating a balanced diet is important for overall health, especially for those with arthritis. Fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and healthy fats can reduce inflammation and relieve pain.
  3. Herbal remedies: Herbal remedies are used in Ayurveda to reduce inflammation, pain, and stiffness associated with arthritis. Common herbs used to treat arthritis include turmeric, ginger, and ashwagandha.
  4. Exercise: Exercise is an important part of an arthritis treatment plan. Moderate exercise can help reduce pain and stiffness, improve joint mobility, and increase muscle strength.
  5. Massage therapy: Massage therapy can help relieve pain, reduce inflammation, and improve joint mobility.
  6. Stress reduction: Stress can worsen the symptoms of arthritis, so it is important to practice stress reduction techniques such as yoga and meditation.

Remedies for Arthritis in Ayurveda

As described above ama and Vata are the main causes, so efforts should be made to digest ama and to reduce the Vata.

  • Improve your digestive power: The digestion should be improved so that no further ama is produced. Efforts should be made to relieve pain and inflammation. This is the line of treatment according to Ayurveda.
  • Do Intermittent Fasting: Fasting[1] is very beneficial for digesting the Ama. The fasting should be complete or partial, depends on the strength of the person, season and, place.
  • Drink lukewarm lemon water : Two teaspoons of lemon juice mixed in 250 ml. of warm water and a teaspoon of honey is good to take twice a day -morning and evening.
  • Oil Massage with Sesame/ Mustard Oil: Body massage with sesame or mustard oil helps to reduce the Vata and thus reduce the pain. The joints affected by pain can be massaged for a longer time.
  • Do Light Exercises: Light exercise is useful but you must know your limits, As a general rule, if any exercise, including walking, causes pain after one hour, you have crossed your limits.
  • Consume Vitamin C rich beverages: Liberal intake of orange juice or sweet lime juice or Vitamin C enhances the efficacy of any anti-rheumatic drug since Vitamin C can reduce skeletal pain.
  • Take Guggul Ayurvedic medicine: Guggul is a very helpful herb for arthritis relief. An amount of 1-3 gm dose of Guggul resin should be taken twice a day after meals with warm water.
    Caution: Not suggested for people with kidney diseases or acute rashes.

Ayurveda advised Diet for Arthritis

Diet in Arthritis plays an important part in fighting the inflammation. In fact, a meal which is easily digestible and not produces gas is considered as the best in Ayurveda remedy for Arthritis.

  • Fruits in Arthritis: Juices of carrot, beat root and cucumber mixed together is also beneficial. Also, green salad with a dressing of lemon juice and a little salt works well. Moreover, fruits like apples, oranges, grapes and papaya are also known to be beneficial in this ailment.
  • Vegetables/Spices in Arthritis: Cooked vegetables like squash, zucchini and pumpkin are good. Cooking with spices like cumin, coriander, ginger, asafetida, garlic, fennel and turmeric is also helps a lot.
  • Worst food in Arthritis: Avoid eating hot, spicy and fried foods, sweets, wind forming foods like cabbage, cauliflower, spinach, broccoli, okra and potatoes should be prohibited. Avoid taking too much tea, coffee, alcohol, white sugar, yoghurt, chocolate and cocoa, excessive smoking.

Lifestyle regulation in Arthritis

Ayurveda suggests that individuals with arthritis should follow a lifestyle that focuses on maintaining balance and harmony in the body. This includes following a healthy diet, avoiding physical and emotional stress, and getting plenty of rest. In summary –

  • Regulate Pain: Exercising regularly, using hot and cold therapies, finding ways to reduce inflammation, and using herbs and other natural remedies can all help manage symptoms of arthritis.
  • Erratic Lifestyle control: Sleeping during day time, staying up late in the night and mental tensions like worry, anxiety, fear, stress and grief etc., should be given up.

Ayurvedic Supplements for arthritis

Ayurvedic supplements for arthritis are made from natural herbs, minerals, and other plant-based ingredients. These herbal supplements are believed to work by reducing inflammation, improving circulation, and boosting immunity.

Ayurvedic supplements

Herbs such as Boswellia serrata, turmeric, ashwagandha, and ginger are often used in ayurvedic supplements for arthritis. Boswellia serrata has anti-inflammatory properties and has been used to treat inflammation and joint pain in traditional ayurvedic medicine. Turmeric contains curcumin, which has anti-inflammatory effects and may help reduce joint pain. Ashwagandha is an adaptogen herb that has been used to reduce stress and improve energy levels, and ginger is often used to reduce pain and inflammation.

Consult a healthcare professional before starting

When taking ayurvedic supplements for arthritis, it is important to consult a healthcare professional to ensure that the supplement is safe and effective. It is also important to follow the recommended dosage and to avoid taking more than the recommended amount. Furthermore, it is important to note that ayurvedic supplements may not be suitable for everyone, so it is important to speak with a healthcare professional before taking any supplement.