When joints swell it’s always because fluid has accumulated in the joint. The fluid is usually watery and yellowish – a bit like the fluid in a blister. Bleeding in the joints can occur, but that usually follows some form of trauma to the joint. Please consult your doctor should you experience this.
A good joint formula needs to:
- Build and maintain healthy cartilage
- Reduce pain and swelling
- Improve mobility in joints and decrease stiffness
- Manage pain
Look no further to find the right product for you:
Keep your joints healthy
Because joints contain many pain receptors, swelling is usually painful, at least initially, as the skin over the joint will of course be stretched. Swollen joints have limited movement, and this makes everyday activities difficult. Changes in the weather (especially damp and low pressure) can make joint pain worse for some people – others find it depends on how much physical activity they do.
A variant of the trauma caused is micro-trauma. This is due to repeated action of a joint, most frequently the wrist, fingers or elbow. It’s often insidious in onset, being quite developed by the time it’s noticed. Anyone who works primarily with their hands is at risk of finger and wrist joint problems.
Gout attacks take place when high uric acid levels lead to the deposit of gout crystals (often in the big toe or other joints like the knee or foot). It results in a red, hot swollen and extremely sensitive joint.
Osteo-arthritis is the most common cause of joint swelling, with fingers being affected most frequently. The swelling eventually settles down to become painless and permanent. Other joints can be affected, particularly the knees and the shoulder.
Rheumatoid arthritis is the most common auto-immune disease affecting the joints, and in the acute phase the affected joints are red-hot and swollen.
The synovial membrane (the soft tissue in certain joints) makes a great home for bacteria, and it’s also a good medium for immune reactions. Anything that brings about a strong immune response, such as an allergy, a reaction to a drug, infection or an auto-immune disorder, can play out in the joints, setting up an inflammatory reaction in the joint membranes.
As we age, our body’s ability to manufacture the glucosamine, the shock absorber and building blocks of cartilage, decreases, resulting in a gradual deterioration of joints.
Glucosamine and Chondroitin
Supplementing with glucosamine stimulates joint repair and increases joint mobility and in some cases is more effective than anti-inflammatories.
Chondroitin sulphate, often added to glucosamine compounds, enhances the action of glucosamine (the cartilage builder). With no side effects noted, glucosamine and chondroitin may be used for long periods of time.
Grape seed and Pine bark extracts are powerful antioxidants that support the countering of oxidative stress and cell degeneration. It also helps the body to keep uric acid more soluble. Vitamin C assists the body with collagen production and antioxidant support.
MSM (Methylsulfonylmethane) is a substance present in food and the human body and provides the nutrient sulphur. MSM inhibit pain impulses along the nerve fibres and curbs inflammation; increase blood supply and blood flow; decrease muscle spasm; soften scar tissue by altering the cross-linking process in collagen and curbs chronic and acute pain.
Essential fatty acids found in cold-water fish oil, evening primrose-, grape seed-, and extra-virgin olive oil are also beneficial in the treatment of arthritis and muscular and joint inflammation.
Herbs that promote wound healing are of great value in keeping joints working properly.
- Curcuma longa (the active component in turmeric), is a popular wound-repair ingredient. Its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anticarcinogenic, antiviral, anti-infectious and detoxifying activities were investigated in a study published in 2004 in the journal Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition.
- Boswelia serrata can reduce swelling, increase mobility and lessen morning stiffness. Boswelia assists the body to manage pain, enhance blood supply to the inflamed joints and assist with repair and recovery.
- Ginger has an anti-inflammatory effect.
- Devil’s claw displays both anti-inflammatory and pain management properties.
- Capsaicin (Capsicum frutescens) is an extract from hot peppers or chilli and act as an anti-arthritic phytochemical that renders the area to which it is applied insensitive to pain by depleting Substance P – the neurotransmitter that transmits pain impulses to the brain.
Do not take OsteoEze Gold Formula if you are allergic to any of the actives. The formula has blood thinning properties. So, take under the care of your healthcare practitioner if you are on blood thinning medication.
- Snaith M, ed. ABC of Rheumatology. London: BMJ Publishing, 2004.
- The Arthritis Foundation: www.arthritis.org
- The Arthritis Foundation of South Africawww.arthritis.org.za
- Murray M and Pizzorno J. Encyclopaedia of Natural Medicine. Little Brown and Co. (UK). [p.695]
- Hess A. Chondroitin Sulfate and Glucosamine Supplements in Osteoarthritis. Arthritis Foundation.
- Chandran B, Goel A. A randomized, pilot study to assess the efficacy and safety of curcumin in patients with active rheumatoid arthritis. Phytother Res. 2012 Mar 9.
This unregistered medicine has not been evaluated by the SAHPRA for its quality, safety or intended use.