Vinegar honey arthritis

by Nathan Wei, MD, FACP, FACR

Nathan Wei is a nationally known board-certified rheumatologist and author of the Second Opinion Arthritis Treatment Kit. It's available exclusively at this website... not available in stores.

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Dr. D.C. Jarvis, practitioner in Vermont, wrote a book entitled Arthritis and Folk Medicine. It is an interesting account of the centuries-old remedies used by farmers in Vermont for preserving vigorous health into old age. The book explains in detail the uses of apple cider vinegar for everything from relieving arthritis to reducing blood pressure to curing osteoporosis.

Jarvis believes that people with arthritis are calcium deficient, yet their joints and blood vessels are lined with calcium deposits that interfere with blood circulation and cause pain. He explains: “People with arthritis are usually classified as calcium deficient, although they do tend to accumulate calcium deposits. Vermont folk medicine says they are not making hydrochloric acid in the stomach, or else the amount made is too small. Normal calcium metabolism is so highly dependent upon this acid that when there is a lack of it a disturbed calcium metabolism is inevitable.”

Apparently Vermonters believe that treatment of arthritis, and many other health problems, must begin in the stomach. Jarvis found that when an apple cider vinegar cocktail is taken daily, calcium deposits are released back into solution in the bloodstream to be re-circulated to the proper parts of the body (the bones), thus alleviating arthritic pain and warding off

osteoporosis. He explains: “The bones are a storehouse for calcium, and the ability to deposit calcium in the bony framework of the body with the aid of vinegar is certainly of value in elderly people because it makes the bones stronger and much less likely to be broken.”

In his conclusion, Jarvis summarizes the Vermont folk medicine prescription for arthritis: “Give 2 teaspoonfuls of apple cider vinegar and 2 of honey in a glass of water, taken at each meal. If this mixture is not accepted by the stomach at mealtimes it may be taken between meals.”

Use the cider vinegar and honey treatment for arthritis and also apply cider vinegar externally to painful joints. Local treatment can also be given by soaking the arthritic hand, or foot in a strong, comfortably hot solution of cider vinegar for ten minutes, two or three times a day - (a quarter of a cup of cider vinegar to one and a half cups of water).

Arthritic knees can be attended to by making a poultice - soak the cloth in a mixture of cider vinegar and water, (as per above mixture) wring out and wrap it around the joint, then secure with a dry cloth to retain heat. When the wet cloth cools, it should be wrung out in the hot solution and applied afresh. Repeat several times, twice daily.

The Arthritis Foundation does not endorse this treatment and lumps it under unproven remedies. My patients sometimes will try things like this. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t. I personally don’t see any real harm in trying it. While I wouldn’t advise using this as a substitute for what your rheumatologist recommends, I don't see the harm in trying it.

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