What is an Anti-rheumatic?

Rheumatism describes any disease marked by inflammation and pain in the joints, muscles, or connective tissues, and specifically, these herbs are those which will have an action on reducing and/or resolving symptoms of musculoskeletal disease.

How Anti-rheumatics Work

Most anti-rheumatic herbs are also largely considered to be Anti-inflammatories & Alteratives, in that they will alter the body’s processes of metabolism so that tissues (such as muscles & joints) can best deal with a range of functions including the elimination of wastes while modifying various inflammatory & immune mediators of the dis-ease. They are mostly employed in cases of chronic inflammatory or degenerative diseases such as arthritis & fibromyalgia to support and encourage the cleansing work of the body.

Other herbal actions that can be considered to have an anti-rheumatic effect include Rubefacients (when used topically) and Andoynes.

Some identified plant constituents have been shown to have an anti-rheumatic effects, including resin, iridoid glycosides, saponins and salicylates, however the overall action of these plants is much more than any one chemical!

Herbal Examples:

  • Harpagophytum procumbens (Devil’s Claw)
  • Dioscorea villosa (Wild Yam)
  • Curcuma longa (Turmeric)
  • Centella asiatica (Gotu kola) 
  • Petroselinum crispum (Celery seed)
  • Arnica montana (Arnica)