Osteoarthritis (OA) is a chronic condition of the joints in which the cartilage cushioning the ends of the bones gradually loses its elasticity and wears down. Without the protective cartilage, the bones begin to rub against each other, causing stiffness, inflammation, and loss of movement. Osteoarthritis treatment therapies with current conventional medicine generally focus on reducing pain and controlling inflammation; however, these approaches have no effect on the natural course of the disease.
Ayurveda offers many herbal treatments for the treatment of osteoarthritis. These herbs have documented anti-inflammatory properties without the side effects of commonly prescribed medications. For example, the American College of Rheumatology, a study was presented which showed that Ayurvedic herbal therapy was as effective in treating osteoarthritis of the knee as a commonly prescribed drug (Celebrex) and glucosamine - and with fewer side effects. The American College of Rheumatology has stated that Ayurveda offers “safe and effective treatment alternatives” for osteoarthritis.
The herbs boswellia, turmeric, ashwagandha, ginger, triphala, guggulu, and shatavari have been shown to decrease inflammation by interfering with the production of inflammatory chemicals in the body.