Bursitis • Natural home remedies

Bursitis describes inflammation of the bursae, little sacs of fluid found around body joints.

Man receiving massage for Bursitis

WHAT IS IT?

This can be a painful, on-again off-again condition.  Repetitive stress to a joint increases your chances of having inflamed bursae.

WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS?

Some or all of these may be present:

  • Pain and tenderness
  • Redness
  • Stiffness
  • Swelling
  • Warmth

ALLOPATHIC TREATMENT

Allopathic treatment might be corticosteroids which will depress immune function and while it will decrease inflammation, is not curative.

SELF TREATMENT

DIET

A healthy immune system is always the first line of defense against disease and inflammation (i.e. diseases with “itis” in the name). To promote a healthy immune system, it is important to eat a balanced diet, with as much variety as you can manage, with lots of whole, fresh vegetables and fruits, quality protein and healthy sources of monounsaturated fat. The Zone is an excellent nutrition plan.

FOODS THAT MAY PROMOTE HEALING

  • Apples
  • Anti-inflammatory foods
  • Beets
  • Black beans
  • Bone Broth is rich in minerals
  • Broccoli
  • Coconut oil
  • Dark chocolate has anti-inflammatory properties
  • Fermented foods, like Miso
  • Garlic
  • Ginger
  • Oysters
  • Pineapple
  • Raw honey
  • Red peppers
  • Wild salmon and other cold water fish

FOODS AND OTHER SUBSTANCES TO AVOID

  • Alcohol
  • All inflammatory foods
  • Fatty foods
  • Legumes
  • Omega 6 oils
  • Processed foods of any kind
  • Processed sugars
  • Smoking

TEAS AND OTHER LIQUIDS

  • Chamomile
  • Ginger tea
  • Green tea
  • Mullein
  • Willow bark tea (thins the blood)

HERBS AND SPICES

  • Ginger
  • Rosemary
  • Turmeric

ESSENTIAL OILS

Essential oils can be administered via a diffuser for inhalation, administered topically in a carrier oil, or undiluted drops can be added to a hot bath.

  • Frankincense
  • Peppermint

OTHER SUBSTANCES AND SUPPLEMENTS

The cost of having a blood test to determine if you have nutritional deficiencies is likely to be negligible compared to over-consuming expensive supplements that you do not need.

  • DMSO topically
  • Enzymes
  • Omega-3’s
  • Probiotics
  • Vitamin B
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin E

HYDRATION

Water is essential and a main nutrient for the human body. Without it, you cannot survive for many days. Staying hydrated is fundamental for a healthy body, so how much is enough? There are so many differences in people (i.e., how much we sweat), as well as the diets we consume (a lot of water comes from healthy, whole foods), but a general rule is to consume enough water that your urine is clear, but not so much that you dilute your nutrients. If you are taking certain supplements that make your urine yellow, then you can start out with the formula of drinking ½ ounce to 1 ounce of water for each pound you weigh. If you weigh 130 pounds, drink 65 to 130 ounces of water a day. Definitely drink when you are thirsty.

EXERCISE

That exercise is beneficial is undisputed. If you are ill, you will want to take it easy, of course, but there is always something you can do to support your body. Do what you can do without making yourself feel worse. Exercise in fresh air whenever possible.

EMOTIONAL SUPPORT

Stay calm. Anxiety undermines health. Practice relaxation exercises, talk to a friend. Do what works for you to keep mellow.  See the post for Stress for relaxation strategies.

OTHER THINGS YOU CAN DO

  • Apple Cider Vinegar compress
  • Castor oil
  • Cat stretch
  • Cold compresses on swollen areas
  • If the bursitis is in an elbow or shoulder, try swinging your aching arm for a couple of minutes now and then.
  • If the joint is hot, use ice, alternating 10 minutes on and 10 off, repeatedly.
  • If there is no heat in the joint, try 10 minutes of ice, 10 minutes of heat repeatedly.
  • If you have no infection, massage with warm oil for several minutes.
  • Lose excess weight to relieve stress on joints.
  • Move around frequently.
  • Stop any activity that is causing or exacerbating the pain.
  • Use good posture to relieve pressure on joints.
  • Wrap the affected area in a compress unfiltered apple cider vinegar for several hours a day.

ALTERNATIVE THERAPIES

  • Acupressure (http://pointfinder.org/bursitis/)
  • Acupuncture for pain relief
  • Biofeedback
  • Chinese Medicine
  • Earthing
  • EFT
  • Homeopathy (http://www.austinclinicofhomeopathy.com/homeopathy-help-blog/austin-homeopathy-tendinitis-and-bursitis)
  • Massage
  • Meditation for a calm mind

PREVENTION

  • A wholesome, balanced diet
  • Regular exercise
  • Low stress levels
  • Quality sleep
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