Q. I took Celebrex for over 10 years for arthritis but it eventually lost effectiveness. My new insurance company would not cover Celebrex unless I tried three other medications: meloxicam, ibuprofen and naproxen.
My doctor suggested fish oil and it provided significant relief, about what I had experienced with Celebrex. Then I read your article about gin soaked raisins and tried them too. I now have less pain and discomfort than I ever did with Celebrex.

A. Joint pain can be challenging because all the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs NSAIDs) that are prescribed have side effects. Ibuprofen, meloxicam and naproxen can be hard on the digestive tract, to put it mildly. They all have the potential to trigger life-threatening perforated ulcers.
All these drugs you have mentioned, including Celebrex, may also raise blood pressure and increase the risk for cardiovascular complications. A recent analysis of data from Denmark confirmed this risk for all NSAIDs except naproxen (Annals of Internal Medicine, online Jan. 15, 2013).
Another drug, prednisone, can cause insomnia, hypertension, diabetes, swelling, osteoporosis and cataracts.
Fish oil and gin-soaked raisins offer much less risk. Some people, like you, find they can be quite helpful. We summarize the pros and cons of medications and offer details about many non-drug options in our Guide to Alternatives for Arthritis. In it, we also discuss other anti-inflammatory foods and spices, such as turmeric, tart cherries, boswellia, ginger, grape juice and pineapple.

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  1. Dee
    Reply

    We have bought the correct gin and raisins to try for our arthritis, but don’t know the recipe for preparation as well as amounts of each, storage, and other pertinent information. Would appreciate any help to get us started. We are in our 70’s and prefer to try a non-narcotic approach. Your comments have been inspiring and give us hope.

  2. fyg
    Reply

    A plant-based diet should help with arthritis. This diet removes foods that cause inflammation.
    I used to suffer from a bulging disk in my neck and after I went on the plant-based diet (vegan) I have absolutely no pain whatsoever. Drugs have too many side-effects so go vegan instead.

  3. SarieD
    Reply

    I have arthritis in my knees and hands, and I found relief taking gluten and all products containing wheat from my diet. Its amazing, the relief I have found. If I eat any wheat or gluten the arthritis returns. Dr William Davis, the author of Wheat Belly advocates taking wheat out of our diets for many reasons, specifically the wide ranging effects wheat has on our bodies, and I have followed his advice. I highly recommend trying this approach.

  4. MARGARET
    Reply

    Yes, I believe in Cod Liver oil, and Omega3. Both help. Right now I’m taking Instaflex too. They prescribe 3 a day… I take one. Can’t use my walker all day, use a chair. But can stand a do a few things and use my walker, of which I wasn’t doing at all. Wanted knee replacements, but at the time got ill and to skip that process. Was doing that ill on, ill off stuff and never got my knee replaced. Only know that Cod Liver Oil and Omega3 help. And I’m in bad shape. Try it. Good Luck

  5. cpmt
    Reply

    I am diabetic, prednison increases the sugar to dangerous levels (500+) for me (and my doctor didn’t know this side effects !!!). BETTER eat or drink CHERRIES, its juice, frozen, in can/jar etc…ALSO ginger and cinnamon are anti inflammatory

  6. KATHLEEN V.
    Reply

    how many gin soaked raisens do I have to eat daily to help with arthritis?
    PEOPLE’S PHARMACY RESPONSE: 9

  7. Mary
    Reply

    What is the best fish oil for joint pain and how much should be taken?

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