Rheumatoid arthritis is the most prominent autoimmune arthritis. It is caused by a defective immune system that causes your defense system to target your joint linings. It affects the wrist and small joints of your hands, including the knuckles, other joints in your fingers and can eventually spread to your knees too.
It is considered one of the most disabling forms of arthritis as it affects both sides of the body, making it different from other forms of arthritis. It can also affect skin, eyes, lungs, heart, blood and even your nerves which is why it is one of the most feared forms of arthritis.
Over the years, several ways of treating rheumatoid arthritis have been discovered. Although there is still no cure for the condition, the treatment can significantly heal those that are newly diagnosed and can slow down the process that in the patients that have been suffering from the condition for a while.
When your immune system attacks your own body, certain chemicals lead to pain and inflammation on your joints. Medical experts are still unclear about what is the exact cause of inflammation in joints. Some suggest that is due to genetic make-up of the individual while other blame environmental factors such as cigarette smoke and infections.
New treatments have been introduced by rheumatologists to suppress the pain and reduce the inflammation caused by this condition. A major reason for why the inflammation needs to be controlled is because of its effect on your heart health. Inflammation can lead to the buildup of plaque in the walls of your arteries. People with this form of arthritis are advised to consult with their doctors regarding the prevention of heart disease.
Other than medication, regular exercise, specific foods and drinks also help you treat rheumatoid arthritis.
A Virginia-based rheumatologist, Mahsa Tehrani has found that certain organic teas help with the reducing of inflammation caused by rheumatoid arthritis.
“Tea has fantastic anti-inflammatory properties which can theoretically help with the underlying inflammation,” she claims.
Here’s a list of teas Tehrani recommends:
Ginger tea is known for helping with healing the digestive system but an Italian study in 2016 found that patients that were given regular doses of ginger reported a better quality of life and significant improvement in pain. To make the tea, just slice up some ginger root and let it steep in boiling water for 10minutes. Note that ginger can act as a blood thinner, so if you’re already on blood-thinning medication, opt for a different tea.
Amongst the many benefits of green tea, is its ability to block the effects of RA without impacting cellular function. According to medical experts, green tea can be considered an alternative to medicine in the future for those suffering from RA.
Rose Hip Tea
Rose hip tea is not as common as other teas. The rose hip is the fruit of the rose plant that appears when the plant is not flowering. The fruit is a concentrated source of vitamin C and is regularly used in home remedies. A study published in Australian Family Physician in July 2012 found that the composition of nutrients found in the rose-hips have anti-inflammatory properties which benefit those with arthritis.
The box of regular black tea bags is loaded with quercetin, a bioflavonoid which has anti-inflammatory effects. However excessive amounts of black tea can have adverse effects, the high caffeine content can leave you feeling jittery and can reduce the impact of medication.
Willow Bark Tea
Willow bark tea is an ancient Chinese remedy. Its effects are similar to those of aspirin and several medical studies have found that it helps with joint pain and osteoarthritis. The study revealed that willow bark extracts have anti-inflammatory and pain-killing effects. That being said, willow bark extracts should not be consumed with people on many medications, pregnant women and those younger than 16.
Nettle Leaf Tea
Nettle leaf has been used in Europe to relieve muscle, joint pain, and arthritis for many years. A study published in 2015 found the antioxidant activity in the nettle leaf extracts hinders one of the main enzymes responsible for inflammation. Nettle is easily available in most grocery stores. Pregnant women and those with kidney and bladder issues should are advised not to consume nettle.
Rheumatoid Arthritis may be the most disabling forms of arthritis and it may not be curable, however, early detection and proper treatment can help mitigate its effects. Medication significantly reduces the symptoms of RA but those suffering can look for alternative solutions as well.
About the Author:
Rachael Everly is an undergraduate student who loves to write on the topics related business, finance, health, lifestyle and education. Follow @Rachael Everly for further updates.