Rheumatoid arthritis is the most common inflammatory arthritis and is a major cause of disability. It was known to exist in early Native American populations about several hundred years ago but might not have appeared in Europe until the seventeenth century. Early theories on the pathogenesis of Rheumatoid arthritis focused on auto antibodies and immune complexes and the contribution of auto antibodies has returned to the forefront more recently. Based on the pathogenic mechanisms specific therapeutic interventions can be designed to suppress synovial inflammation and joint destruction in rheumatoid arthritis.



There are so many medicinal plants that have shown anti rheumatoid arthritis properties. So the plants and plant products with significant advantages are used for the treatment of Rheumatoid arthritis.



• Warm, swollen joints


• Symmetrical pattern of affected joints


• Fatigue, occasional fevers, loss of energy.


• Joint inflammation often affecting the wrist and finger joints.


• Joint inflammation sometimes affecting the joints in the neck, shoulders, elbows, hips, knees, ankles and feet.



1. Nidan Parivarjan/ elimination of cause.


2. Langhana, Deepana, Pachana to promote Agni.


3. Appropriate Elimination of Ama(Toxins) by Selective Sodhan.


4. Dietary Restrictions advocating Katu, Tikta, Usna, Laghu.


5. Use of Medication for Pain & Inflammation.


6. Snehana, Swedana, Vasti in chronic Niramawastha.


7. Local care of Inflamed Joints.


8. Exercise & Physiotherapy.


9. Samshaman Treatment with specific drugs.


10. Rehabilitative procedures and long follow-ups.
Shodhana Chikitsa


1. Mild purgatives, which digest ama also such as eranda saneha,drugs like gandharva haritki can be given.


2. Basti or enema shoulb be given –kshar basti such as vaitarna basti.
Shaman Chikitsa


1. Langhanum(Fasting)


2. Swedanum(Fomentation)-local hot fomentation using sand etc
Care of Joints in ‘Amavata’


1. Physical activities causing pain in the joints should be avoided.


2. Staying in one position for too long should be avoided.


3. Good posture of the Joints should be maintained.


4. One should sleep on a firm mattress or bed.


5. Weight should be controlled as excess of weight adds stress to the joints.


6. Exercise is very important to keep the joints in working condition.






Gentle exercise can help to strengthen muscles around joints and also helps to fight fatigue.



RELAX: Techniques such as hypnosis, guided imagery, deep breathing and muscle relaxation can be done to control.


YOGA: Yoga can help to improve strength and flexibility. The exercises should be performed with caution by people with rheumatoid arthritis who have spinal problems.



Intake of GINGER: Ginger has been used for thousands of years in ayurvedic medicine and other systems of traditional medicine, as an anti-inflammatory agent.



Ginger is found to be very effective in the treatment of arthritis and helps to alleviate pain. A mixture of soups, sauces or salads with ginger could be used in the treatment of arthritis.



Intake of TURMERIC: Turmeric is an extremely effective anti-inflammatory herb and acts as an effective pain reliever. Curcumin and curcuminoids are the two essential chemicals that help to decrease inflammation and is the most recommended remedy for rheumatoid arthritis.



Suggested diet and life style to treat Rheumatoid arthritis are :
Do mild weight bearing exercises regularly as they improve bone density. When certain yogasanas are done with rythming breathing techniques they increase the tissue building and improves the strengthening and stretching of the muscles around the points. Not to climb stairs or bend or squat. Walking a little distance may help. Biking, swimming or aerobic dances helps to improve the bone condition.



Avoid alcohols, cigarettes, carbonated beverages. Take food that is rich in calcium like cheese, orange juice, leafy vegetables. Cereals etc. Drink milk regularly as it has vitamin D content in it. Take a lot of vitamin K rich foods such as lettuce, spinach, Brussels sprouts etc., Take care to consume only freshly cooked warm food and take hot soups of lentils, pulses and meat with ginger, black pepper and long pepper powdered sprinkled to it.. It is essential to include a moderate amount of ghee and oil in diet as it lubricates the joints. Avoid taking food that are sour, spicy, deed fried, oily, pungent, acid, dark poultry, refined sugar, fermented food and also lessen the intake of salts. Also follow some basic rules of not eating wrong combination of foods, eat only up to your limit, Strictly follow the timings of your eating and do not eat in between the meals.


A modified diet and good lifestyle along with ayurvedic medicines and panchkarma will yield a great result in treating Rheumatoid arthritis.


Dr Adarsh

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