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Health Tip

Blackberry Juice to Provide Relief From Joint Pain

The therapeutic uses of blackberry have been known since the days of antiquity. The ancient Greeks used it to treat gout, an inflammatory disease of the joint. Because of this, the shrub is also called goutberry. Traditional healers use its roots, leaves and barks to treat diarrhea and inflammations of the mouth - and not without a good reason. Research has found that it is, indeed, packed with ingredients that make it an excellent pain-relieving medicine. The scientific name for this deciduous shrub native to the Mediterranean region is Rubus Villosus.

What are its main constituents?

Blackberries are packed natural compounds that have potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. These compounds include tannins, sterols and flavonoids, such as as ascorbic acid, beta-amyrin, chlorogenic acid, ferulic acid, stigmasterol and ursolic acid. A report published in the "American Journal of Clinical Nutrition" in 2006 has placed it at the top of the list of natural antioxidants. One cup of blackberry juice has up to 7,701 antioxidants that may help prevent damages to cells and tissues, according to St. John Providence.

How does it provide relief from joint pain?

Join pain is caused by diseases such as gout, rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. These inflammatory diseases are chronic in nature and can cause a significant amount of pain. They have a degenerative effect on the joint membrane and cartilage, which means these organs gradually deteriorate and lose their functions. These diseases have no known cures, and treatment is concerned only with relieving the inflammation and pain. Drugs like acetaminophen and NSAIDS are used for this purpose, but they are too strong for many patients. Blackberry juice concentrates all the ingredients found in the fruit, including antioxidants, which provide relief from joint pain. Blackberry juice is easy to make, but it would still be wise to ask an expert or experienced practitioner for advice on dosage levels

How does it provide relief from inflammation?

Inflammation is our body's natural reaction to invasion by pathogens, toxic chemicals and physical trauma. This helps protect the body from diseases. Sometime, however, the reaction keeps going on even after the job is done, and this is where the trouble starts. This results in chronic inflammation that can lead to diseases such as joint disorder, cancer, diabetes and heart disease. Blackberry juice helps relieve pain and reduce inflammation because of its antioxidant properties.

How do antioxidants help relieve joint pain?

Molecules called oxidants and other free radical floating around in our body can damage the cells and tissues. This is called oxidative effect. The oxidants reduce the body's ability to fight toxins, which are responsible for inflammation. The free particles are responsible for degenerative diseases like osteoarthritis. A study published in the "Iowa Orthopedic Journal" in 2007 found that the pain associated with osteoarthritis was caused by oxidative damage, and this could be treated by antioxidants. The research suggested foods rich in antioxidants, such a blackberry juice, to cure the condition.

Does blackberry juice have side effects?

Blackberry juice has some minor side effects that can be avoided. It can make constipation worse, so you should avoid it if you are constipating. The tannins in blackberries may interfere with absorption of other medicine that you are using, if any. If taken on an empty stomach, tannins can also slightly upset your stomach, so eat something before you drink the juice.

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