BACK TO ASK THE HERBALIST
ANSWERS FROM CARLOS:
QUESTION: My father
has osteo arthritis, gout, and inflammation, I was
wondering if these herbs are safe in pill form taken as
recommended on back of the bottle, They are herb shop
brand: devils claw, licorice root, Siberian ginseng,
DHEA, pregnenolone,and triphala, I picked these because
I read that arthritis is always an adrenal/endocrine
weakness so i wanted to strengthen these glands and the
devils claw for inflammation/pain. Also are most herbs
ok to combine as long as taken by directions? Thanks!
Many herbs are safe to combine, but that does not mean
they should be. with herbs it all may depend on which
herbs, in what form, at what dosage and at what
frequency. My honest advise is to never self-medicate.
In most cases I never suggest Western herbs in pill
form, extracts and tinctures are stronger and work
better and faster.
Take for instance your choice of pregnenolone, I
personally would never suggest it. I prefer to stay away
from any and all steroid hormones. The triphala may be
of some use if he falls under the indicators of
Ayurvedic medicine. The licorice may be helpful for
digestion. and adrenal weakness. The others are okay.
For relief of the pain and inflammation I would
encourage you to obtain an ointment by the name of Yee
Tin, massaging with a few drops in circular motion and
then applying a heat pad to the area may just do the
trick. Another great formula comes to us from China
named Yunnan Baiyao (Paiyao), 4 capsules 3xs per day.
This formula is a good pain reliever and opens up
circulation of blood to the needed areas, so it would
help reduce the gout and inflammation.
I recently had surgery and was told to stay away from ibuprofen and
aspirin. I have VERY bad joint pains especially in my
knees. What do you recommend? Is Glucosamine safe for
You failed to state the reasons your doctors told you to
stay away from aspirin I assume it is because of the
blood thinning agents. I would strongly suggest that you
add 50mg Zinc once daily, the properties in Zinc helps
us heal faster.
Glucosamine should be okay. But remember, If you are
allergic to shellfish you should consult your physician
before using glucosamine products. Glucosamine is
derived from shellfish. If you suffer from
diabetes, please check your blood glucose levels
frequently as it may increase the risk of developing
insulin resistance. It should always be taken with
meals to avoid gastric problems.
I would also suggest Yunnan Paiyao a very famous and
very effective Chinese formula. Taken 4 pills 3xs day,
it should work very favorably.
ANSWERS FROM LORHYL:
My wife has Rheumatoid arthritis and she lost her right
wrist movement, she is only 28 years old, 68 kg weight
she has problem with both knees, neck and elbow. Which
herbs can we use to cure it? is it possible with herbs.
ANSWER: First of all, take a close look at her
diet, make sure she is eating, healthy, fresh, non
processed foods. Make sure she is not eating
Nightshades, they are the Solancea, plants, all related
first cousins. They are :
potato, tomato, eggplant, green pepper, (also red and
yellow), paprika. These foods, in certain types of
people, cause arthritis, and severe arthritis, in many.
Read the downloads on diet. Cleaning the toxins out of
her diet, will help tremendously. Give her the
following herbs, and supplements:
- our formula, Free Flowin, with turmeric and other
herbs for pain, inflammations and arthritis
- Omega 3 oils
- Astragalus, pills, 3 , 3 times daily
- Schizandra pills, 3 - 3 times daily
Rub Neem oil, into the joints, several times daily. Eat
very healthy, drink raw juices.
ANSWERS FROM KAREN
CAN GIARDIA CAUSE ARTHRITIS
My son is 19 and diagnosed with arthritis in the
cervical and lumbar spine. I also have what seems to be
arthritis in the lower back and my 15 year old has
similar symptoms. We all had giardia about 10 years
ago, which was treated with an antiflagyl medicine, but
were never re-tested. After doing some research, I
suspect that the giardia may have gone into a chronic
state and may have resulted in these inflammatory
conditions. Both kids have severe allergies and asthma.
The doctors I've seen recently just wanted to know if
we'd been treated for the giardia. The answer was yes,
so they move on. But, I'll push to be retested and
My question is that I read that we should
increase our Omega 3 oil intake. Also that a
combination of flaxseed and alcohol 4:1 used as a
liniment would help the arthritis stiffness and pain.
The cervical spine issue is the most serious and we've
used the therma heat products which provides relief. I
want to make a sack with alfalfa seeds that my son could
heat and put over his neck, but the idea of a liniment
also sounded like it works if you rub it in. I don't
know how to make this liniment, and from your site it
looked like adding some other herbal ingredients might
make it more effective. I thought if I could make this
sack it could be soaked in other spirits, rubbing
alcohol or a mixture and then heated in the microwave
before using. But, that might get messy and it would be
good to be able to reuse this sack.
What are your thoughts? Also, are there
herbs we can take to repair the intestine from the
parasitic infection that would also be "safe" for my
ANSWER: Giardia is caused by a parasite that
lives in the lower digestive tract. I've never heard of
"chronic" cases turning into arthritis. That has to be
something else. They aren't even remotely related. I
would seriously have a chiropractor look at your son.
The liniment you describe sounds more like a tincture to
me. Not knowing the recipe, it's hard to say. I have a
special liniment for my clients who are skiers and
athletes. If you are interested, e-mail me with the word
ORDER in the subject line. If you are still suffering
from the parasites, you need to look carefully at your
drinking water. It is caused by dirty water or food that
has been exposed to animal feces, so something is
getting into your food supply or your water supply if
treatment hasn't eliminated it. Try some Barberry Root
Tea. It will kill the parasite. Also, Acidophilus will
set up the good bacteria in your digestive tract to ward
off the beasties.
I have been told that ACETYL-MYRISTOLEETE will help
arthritis. Is this a
herbal substance? What can you tell me about it?
Unfortunately, cetyl myristoleate is not natural or
herbal. It is a compound developed by a man named Harry W.
Diehl in a home lab in Maryland. I did some research for
you and it seems his company sells this product and
includes milk thistle, which is a liver tonic and
cleanser. My first question is, if this is healthy, why
include a liver cleanser?
following list includes several herbs that may help
relieve the pain of arthritis. There is no known cure.
Devil's Claw: an anti-inflammatory, analgesic, digestive
stimulant, Devil's Claw is officially recognized as an
anti-rheumatic in Europe.
Yucca improves digestion with actives called saponins. A
problematic digestive system can result in excess
histamine production, which leads to worsened inflammation
and pain in some people.
Alfalfa leaves provide needed nutrients to help bring your
body to a healthy and aid in healing.
Wild Yam root:
(AKA Rheumatism Root) This root is an anti-inflammatory
that can help reduce pain. It also has mild diuretic
properties to gently cleanse the body of toxins and waste.
Sarsaparilla is officially recognized in Europe for its
anti-rheumatic, anti-inflammatory properties.
White Willow bark:
White Willow Bark contains salicin, a pain reliever.
Salicin is used to make aspirin, but when the herb is
used, it will not irritate the stomach.
Horsetail contains silica, which is vital in strengthening
and regenerating connective tissue (found abundantly in
a mild laxative, Chickweed aids in overall cleansing of
the body. The laxative effect is so mild that most people
do not notice it.
with any herb, if you are pregnant or nursing, or if you
are taking any type of medication, you should consult your
ANSWERS FROM DAVID BRILL
QUESTION: I'm finding that the fingers on both
hands are difficult to manipulate 1st
thing in the morning. They do improve later
although there remains some
stiffness throughout the day. Also I'm in constant
lower back pain when
using a treadmill or playing golf, which does not ease
ANSWER: I would suggest seeing a doctor in
your area to find out what is wrong, without knowing
your age or other factors it is hard for me to guess
what is wrong.
If I had these symptoms I would assume I had a problem
with inflammation and possibly circulation or nerve
Ginkgo is good for circulation
Saint Johnswort is good for nerve issues
Turmuric is a great antiinflammatory
Hawthorn is good for circulation and connective tissue
QUESTION: my husband is trying to tell me absynthe
can be used as an arthritus(sp) cure, or to ease the
pain. I can't find that in any of my nutritional
material. Is that true?
ANSWER: I am assuming you are talking about
Wormwood sometimes called Absinthe or Absinthium, Latin
named: Artemesia absinthium.
This herb has been traditionally used internally for
intestinal worms, amoebas and other parasites. It
has also been used externally as a linament in vinegar
or as a bath for rheumatism, sprains, strains, and sore
muscles, this may be the association for the arthritis
mentioned in your question. It is also a strong
bitter herb, in the realm of herbal medicines there are
herbs that have the same actions and are much
safer to consume.
Caution is suggested for use of this herb, it is very
toxic and should only be used by those trained to
do so, it is high in volatile oils: pinene and thujone
(a central nervous system poison) other constituents
include absinthin, absinthic acid, cadinene,
isovalerianic acid, lignans, phenolic acids, phellandren.
QUESTION: I would like to know of a
herb and how to prepare it for easing inflamation. This would be from
Devil's Claw, Yucca, and Alfalfa seed. All are traditional
arthritis remedies. They decrease pain and inflammation.
Meadowsweet, Honeysuckle, Mulberry bark, Willow bark, Black or Sweet
Birch, Wintergreen. For symptomatic relief of pain and
inflammation similar to aspirin.
Other anti-inflammatory compounds not in above categories: Guiac
(Guiacum) or Lignum vitae, Boswellia (Ayurvedic herb), Turmeric and
In the diet
Increase water consumption. Most people don't get enough water,
but the water it helps with the inflammation and increase the fluids
between joints cushioning them more. I would drink upwards to a
gallon a day.
Increase Omega 3 fatty acids. If the consumption of dietary or
supplementary Omega 6 to Omega 3 fatty acid ratio is off, inflammation
will increase. Increase fish oils, or flaxseed oil for
vegetarians, but flaxseed is harder to absorb.
Eliminate refined or processed foods it whole foods, lots of colorful
fruits and vegetables. You want a diet rich in Flavonoids, which
are anti-inflammatory. Therefore increase consumption of
berries, grapes, cherries, rose hips, dark chocolate (unsweetened),
colorful edible flowers, elderberries, blueberries, black and red
There are other specific foods that are helpful. Pineapple
contains Bromelain, an anti-inflammatory. Papaya has anti-inflammatory
components. Paw Paws are a native fruit, called custard banana,
with similar properties. Lemon juice or apple cider vinegar--one
tablespoon in 8 oz water, drink throughout the day. Must be
freshly squeezed lemon juice. Raw vegetable juices
Raw milk contains constituents some say reduce inflammation in