Thanks to their powerful inflammation-fighting compounds, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, strawberries and cherries are among nature’s most extraordinary arthritis pain relievers. Imagine your daily treatment for your osteoarthritis (OA) or rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is eating a beautiful bowl of juicy berries for breakfast, or a cupful as a midday snack, or a luxurious, fresh berry dessert. That’s a great prescription for joint pain–one that’s equal to a dose of the leading arthritis drug. And far more delicious.
1. Berries beat aspirin for pain relief. Berries are the ideal food for people with arthritis because they’re also loaded with pain-relieving and healing power. Berries are nature’s richest source of anthocyanins, a group of antioxidant flavonoids with exceptional anti-inflammatory properties. Tart cherries, for example, are ten times more effective against joint pain than aspirin. Scientists at Michigan State University found that just 20 tart cherries contain 25 mg of anthocyanins, enough to block the COX-2 enzymes that make arthritic joints hurt, while reducing inflammation the same way that NSAID drugs do.
2. “Her pain completely disappeared!” Clinical studies prove it. At Baylor University, scientists conducted a small study testing the effect of cherry extract on people with arthritis. Five out of six participants experienced significant relief, without side effects. After a mere three months, at least one participant announced her pain had completely disappeared. Once she stopped the cherry extract, her pain returned, which is why she’s now drinking 100% unsweetened cherry juice and enjoying fresh cherries every chance she gets.[For more studies about the healing benefits of cherries go to http://www.cherrytherapy.com/facts.html]
3. Blue is best for arthritis. The tiny blueberry is a mighty arthritis-healing superfood. It’s packed with more antioxidants than any other vegetable or fruit, according to Tufts University researchers. Wild blueberries are even more spectacular, containing at least five different types of anthocyanins, the antioxidant that puts the “blue” in blueberry. This mega-load of antioxidant in berries and cherries also provides exceptional cell protection against free radical molecules, which damage DNA, cell membranes and joint tissue.
4. Berry juice relieves joint pain, too. Although whole fresh berries contain fewer calories, more fiber and superior healing properties, berry juice is a good option for powerful arthritis pain relief, too. If you buy commercial berry juice, be sure it’s made from organic berries and has no added sweeteners. Fruit juice is high in natural sugars, so it’s best to dilute it. Carry it with you to ease arthritis pain and quench your thirst at the same time. Make a joint-soothing spritzer by mixing one part 100% cherry, blueberry or other berry juice with two parts sparkling water or seltzer.
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