Home remedies that may work for arthritis
A potent antioxidant found in green tea called epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) may help put the brakes on the joint pain and inflammation that are hallmarks of rheumatoid arthritis, according to a study in mice published in Arthritis and Rheumatology. While the results are preliminary (and animal research isn’t always applicable to humans), there’s no harm in sipping a cup or two of green tea a day until scientists know more. And if we are talking about osteoarthritis, the wear-and-tear form of the disease, a substance in red hot chilli peppers may do the trick. Chilli peppers contain capsaicin, and a study review published in Progress in Drug Research found that in topical form it can reduce joint pain, stiffness, and swelling related to osteoarthritis. Try applying a capsaicin cream four times daily to sore joints.
Home remedies that work for insect bites
For run-of-the-mill itching, look no further than that breakfast staple, oats. “Colloidal oatmeal has a long history and equally solid biological basis for its anti-inflammatory and anti-itch effects,” says Dr Adam Friedman, professor and chair of dermatology at George Washington School of Medicine and Hospital. Find it as a cream or even an over-the-counter bath powder, and follow instructions on the label.
If you’ve already scratched the bite, prevent infection with Manuka honey (not regular honey), which comes from New Zealand and may help in the treatment of wounds. “It is a great osmotic agent, meaning that it pulls water into the wound/skin and is an antibacterial agent,” Dr Friedman says. “Hydrating the skin can help cool it off, and the antibacterial properties are useful as a scratched bug bite is susceptible to infection.”
Home remedy that may work for colds
Your mother was right. (Isn’t she always?) “Chicken soup has been shown to be helpful for colds in a study,” says Dr Len Horovitz, a clinical instructor in medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College. One of the best home remedies, chicken soup may have anti-inflammatory properties that can ease the symptoms of upper respiratory tract infections, according to a study published in Chest. The researchers found that chicken soup curbs white blood cells called neutrophils, reducing their movement when tested in laboratory dishes. Just keep in mind that a warm cup of chicken noodle is no stand-in for a visit to a doctor. “It’s important to be seen and examined, to have a strep test or influenza test to be sure it is ‘just a cold,’” Dr Horovitz says.