Q. My husband and I are both suffering from arthritis pain. His knees hurt and I have problems with my thumbs and my hips. My doctor says hip replacement is in my future.

We have tried glucosamine and chondroitin. The supplements seemed to help for a while, but now we are both limping again. Do you have any natural suggestions for arthritis?

A. One possibility is a home remedy that combines Certo with grape juice. Some folks say it works wonders for stiff, painful joints. Certo is plant pectin, used to thicken jams and jellies. A teaspoon or two added to a small glass of grape juice three times a day may be worth a try.

One reader offered this story: “I have suffered from severe pain in my hips for three years and shoulder pain for ten. For the past three weeks now I have been taking a tablespoon of Certo in 8 ounces of no-sugar-added Concord grape juice morning and afternoon. I sip it slowly over the course of several hours.

“I have gone from needing a couple of Vicodin daily to not using any. Some days I take a single ibuprofen for my pain relief. That is a huge difference!”

We have written about natural approaches to coping with joint pain in our Guides to Home Remedies and Alternatives for Arthritis.

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  1. Hellen
    Reply

    The Balm of Gilead tree has a resin on the newly formed buds as leaves develop and form. This Indian remedy has proved to help more than any pain medication. the trees were brought to our home at the foot of the Applachian Mt.s in NC. They have been rooted, and shared with many folks along with the salve made by heating the buds in petroleum jelly, then pour the hot liquid in containers. It is wonderful aid for any pain.

  2. eddie
    Reply

    I’ve tried everything from glucosomine to devils claw but the only time I’m not in any pain is when I’m training on the weights or riding my bike.The bottom line is to bite the bullet and be active and not to give in.

  3. mac
    Reply

    Where can I purchase Certo/Sure Jell in larger quantities? My local WalMart grocery section only carries Sure Jell in 3 oz sizes. Using a tablespoon at a time, I go thru a box in a day or so for my husband and myself.

  4. Lydia
    Reply

    I have had some hip pain for about 2 months now….I use a heat/pain stick on pad that I purchase from CVS drug store…..you have to get the ones that heat up..lasts for 8 hrs. which is perfect…this combined with hot baths and massage and exercise work fine.

  5. John C.
    Reply

    I have solved many of my own joint problems, including the ones you mention above, with massage, most of which I can do myself. Joint pain often has a muscular component. Usually some, and often all, of the pain is muscular. Overly tight muscles can cause inflammation of the joint capsule as well as misaligned joints.
    The pain often comes from the soft tissue surrounding the joint rather than the joint itself. Massage can show us how much of the problem is muscular and can relieve much of the pain quickly and easily.

  6. GFD
    Reply

    Thank you very much for repeating the information for Arthritis & the use of Certo & grape juice. I initially only had 1 tablespoon in 8 oz.s of juice per day and found the results marginal. I read your Newsletter at another time and based on that information increased my dose to 3 times per day in a small amount of grape juice. It has made all of the difference in the world. My knee pain is minimal; I can walk around for greater lengths of time without discomfort. Thank you again!

  7. sh
    Reply

    started taking certo and grape juice this weekend for hip and knee pain from curvature of the spine. I have a already slept without waking from knee pain. I would caution people from sipping on grape juice over course of day due to the sugar content of grape juice. It is bad for your teeth ( I work for a dentist) to bath your teeth in sugar all day long. It would be better to drink it at one time and drink water after that.

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