by Dr. John Christopher
Arthritis is a disease which affects the joints. It is attended by pain, heat, redness, stiffness and swelling. Archaeological evidence indicates that arthritis was known as far back as the earliest dynasties of ancient Egypt and possibly before that time. In the new world we find "prehistoric" North American Indian skeletal populations exhibiting arthritic deposits and bone deformities. The disease knows no boundaries as far as age, social status, or geographical distribution.
I, myself, came into this world bearing the unsavory burden of rheumatoid arthritis, a chronic form of the disease involving the destruction of the tissues of the joints, the cartilage of the joints, and even the bone surfaces themselves. Usually this disease comes upon a person after the age of thirty or forty, but the condition can be inherited. Some other symptoms include excruciating pain or swelling in the joints, debility, anemia, weight loss and fever. If there is extensive damage, the joints themselves can become fused together as the body deposits scar tissue in and around the joints. Rheumatoid arthritis often occurs and recurs during a person's life as it has done during mine. Physical stress or emotional stress can bring it on.
The other common type of arthritis, osteoarthritis, is generally found in older people. It is characterized by the wearing away of the cartilage, the gristle or white elastic substance attached to the articular bone surfaces. The function of the cartilage is to provide a smooth surface for the movement of the bones over each other at the joints. Often this cartilage is worn away and the bare surfaces of the bones rub against each other at the joints. This is extremely painful. The knee joints and hip joints are generally affected because of the constant weight of the body placed on them. The sufferer feels stiffness in the joints accompanied by pain and inflammation often after activity and damp or humid weather.
Several other medical terms have been applied to variations of the osteo and rheumatoid arthritis. These names are not important here. What is important is that we go to the cause of arthritis and apply our remedies accordingly.
There is an advertisement from the media that states "Arthritis STRIKES one person every so-and-so minutes, so give your money to us so we can research and find a cure." Actually arthritis does not Strike an individual. The groundwork for arthritis is laid by generations of man's transgression against the laws of nature. Arthritis has been said to be "incurable." This is because most researchers have not looked into the fundamental reasons for the existence of a disease. We see in our society today, that arthritis is not just a disease that a few oldsters occasionally get, but that it has reached epidemic proportions among the population. The so-called incurable diseases, arthritis, cancer, high blood pressure, heart disease, etc., are due to the long-term suppression of symptoms of these maladies by the extensive and indiscriminate use of allopathic (in most cases unwholesome and inorganic) drugs. The patient often has to take over/ under/or around-the-counter drugs for a lifetime in order to "manage" their disease while the natural body functions slow up and eventually shut down.
There is one basic cause for any disease and this is simply malnutrition. Poor food, poor digestion, poor assimilation, poor utilization, poor elimination. Add stress to this picture and you will see how a wonderful and complex mechanism designed by the Creator of the entire universe, made to function for 1,000 years, can be brutally destroyed by man's inventions: diseases.
One of the medical discoveries for the relief of arthritis, aspirin, was lauded as being the panacea of the century. But just a few years later, we found out the extensive damage that can be done to the stomach by this insipid poison. Mothers who have faithfully followed their doctor's orders and given their children aspirin for fever are now being told that this is a very dangerous practice and should be discontinued. Drugs for arthritic pain have come and gone, each one being replaced by a new, uncertain experiment, possibly giving forth worse side effects than its predecessors. There is one thing about Mother Nature, folks, she is consistent. Nature's laws can be applied yesterday, today, and tomorrow. An apple or a fig was just as good for you in King Solomon's time as it is today-provided it isn't sprayed with DDT, thanks to our pals in the human race.
In this letter we will give you our recommendations for relief of arthritis. They will always remain unquestionably simple and wholesome and have helped many through our years of practice.
An absolute necessity in life is water. It is the universal solvent, the lubricator. The human body is composed of over 80% water. Most of the water we drink comes from the ground and carries with it minerals in solution. It is hard water that often has a lot of calcium in it. I'm sure all of you have seen the calciferous build-up on the inside of a tea kettle or a water vaporizer. When we drink water, this calcification actually goes into our system and cannot be processed by the body. It is accepted but not assimilated. It may be shuttled around the body because it cannot be used. An excess of inorganic calcium can be deposited around the area of the joints, causing great discomfort. We recommend drinking steam distilled water instead of any other.
The consumption of meat adds uric acid wastes to the system, producing gouty inflammation. Processed "foods" with excessive carbohydrate intake also contribute to the malfunction of every cell in the body. It's always been a wonder how we, as a nation, spend so much time and monetary energy to find the proper animal feed when we don't even know what to feed ourselves.
VITAMIN C (citric acid) AND ARTHRITIS
Several studies have been done on the connection between Vitamin C and arthritis. Richard Lucas in his book, Nature's Medicines reports that in a hospital treating chronic diseases of the elderly, pain of arthritis was decreased within one month by the addition of 8 ounces of orange juice to the daily diet. In another study it was found that arthritis sufferers were relieved of gouty symptoms by drinking canned cherry juice. Because many people eat meat, they have a build-up of uric acid in the system which tends to create these symptoms. Blood uric acid dropped as a result of taking 1/2 lb. of fresh or canned cherries a day.
Many of our herbs contain Vitamin C. One of the highest is rose-hips. Rose hip tea is very refreshing and will certainly be an aid in eliminating uric acid build-up. Hibiscus flowers also contain high amounts of C. Any citrus fruits can also be aids.
He noted that Vermont folk medicine, although they did not distinguish between arthritis, bursitis, rheumatism, gout, osteoarthritis, etc., they were successful in treating all these diseases with two teaspoonfuls of apple cider vinegar and two of honey in a glass of water three times a day. They felt that arthritis treatment began in the stomach where the acid balance prevented putrefaction of food. (Bacteria will not grow in an acid medium.) These bacteria guard the door to proper assimilation of nutriments in the stomach and intestine. One of the body's chief necessities is calcium. If the calcium balance is off, the results will be seen in many ways. There will be frayed nerves, inferior fingernails and hair, and other disorders including susceptibility to infectious diseases and arthritis resulting from altered body chemistry.
Calcium enters into solution in an acid medium. The apple cider vinegar creates an acidic medium which is capable of dissolving excess inorganic calcium--even if it is in the form of arthritic deposits in the joints. Cows, when allowed to graze by their own instincts, will always choose acidic vegetation over alkaline. When they are fed winter feed, they may run the risk of developing milk fever which affects the quality of their milk, often paralyzes their hind legs, and makes for difficult calf delivery. The acidity of the system determines the health of the newborn calf as well. Animals even take to drinking apple cider vinegar voluntarily when it is set before them.
OTHER FACTORS IN ARTHRITIS
A malfunctioning nervous and endocrine system can also be a factor in arthritis. The hypothalamus sends a signal to the parathyroid to begin dissolving bone if the body needs calcium elsewhere. The thyroid gland is the regulator of the reverse process. If the thyroid is underactive, bone may continue to dissolve, causing osteoporosis or bone loss. If it is overactive, excess calcium is deposited back into the bones. When the bones have enough calcium, the malfunctioning thyroid can't say "quit!" So, excess calcium may be deposited on the outside of the bones and even the joints. It would do well to check that thyroid (through iridology or otherwise) and use kelp or some form of organic iodine to rebuild it if it is degenerating. The thyroid herbal formula (Kelp T) is a good aid here along with the perfect glandular food, three parts mullein and one part lobelia (as a tea, capsule, or fomentation over the thyroid area).
We have found that an arthritic person can improve their condition remarkably in a few short weeks by making three changes in diet (if nothing else):
1. eliminate meat from the diet
2. eliminate refined sugar from diet
3. drink plenty of distilled water
A very wonderful herbal aid for arthritis and rheumatism is AR-1 formula consisting of hydrangea root (a great calcium solvent for any part of the body), Brigham herb (high in copper), yucca (with saponins that have a detergent-like action within the blood stream to cleanse and purify), chaparral (also high in copper), lobelia, burdock root, sarsaparilla, wild lettuce, valerian, wormwood, cayenne, black cohosh, and black walnut. These herbs detoxify and dissolve old calcium deposits. Some of the herbs are very high in organic calcium, which can be used by the body. There are also herbs which kill fungus and infection and some good pain-relievers. We add here that the process of arthritis is a long one, to have the disease reach a chronic state, and relief (that is, complete relief) can only be a slow process of rebuilding the system. We have mentioned the herbs that are high in copper. We have seen many arthritis sufferers wearing copper bracelets to get relief from the disorder. The marvelous herbs high in copper will do the job much better.
For extreme cases of joint inflammation and pain, we recommend our BF&C Formula which is our Bone, Flesh and Cartilage formula, or the Comfrey Fomentation. This could be used either as a fomentation or as an ointment. It is wonderful to dissolve calcium spurs. Make a tea of the following herbs: oak bark, marshmallow root, mullein, wormwood, lobelia, skullcap, comfrey leaf, walnut bark, and gravel root. Use one ounce of the combined herbs to a pint of water. Soak the herbs for four to six hours prior to simmering them down to one-half the original volume. Then you may add one-fourth the amount of vegetable glycerine if desired. For severe cases, drink one-fourth a cup of tea with three-fourth's of a cup of distilled water three times a day.
For very advanced cases of arthritis, we recommend the "Incurables" program. The fresh fruit and vegetable juices are a necessity. Dr Arthur W. Snyder also recommends celery and cucumber juice, carrot, endive, and apple juice.
Dr. Norman W. Walker's idea is that arthritis is caused by inorganic calcium deposits in the joints as a result of eating concentrated carbohydrates in excess. He suggests grapefruit juice, celery juice, carrot and spinach juice, and carrot and celery juice; carrot, beet, and cucumber is also recommended.
Arthritis need not be the crippling scourge of mankind. If dietary discretion is applied early enough, arthritis can be prevented. In the later stages, it can be reversed if care is taken to apply the simple principles of nature, consistently and faithfully.
Information taken from Dr. Christopher's Newsletter Volume 3 Number 11. Used by permission.