When you’re struggling with the pain of osteoarthritis… when even the simplest tasks like climbing the stairs or opening a jar of mayonnaise can feel like torture… you’ll do anything for relief.
And that’s why so many patients I meet spend their days popping NSAID (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory) drugs like aspirin, ibuprofen, ketoprofen, and naproxen.
Believe me, I get it. They work for a while, which is probably why one study found that 43 per cent of adults had taken a NSAID in the previous two weeks.
But that temporary pain relief comes with a much higher price than you may have ever imagined.
There are more than 100,000 NSAID-related hospitalizations each year in the United States and over 16,000 NSAID-related deaths. In the UK, some 4,000 people die each year from taking NSAIDs – double the number of deaths from asthma. Most of the problems come from serious gastrointestinal bleeding, followed by permanent damage to your kidneys.
Nobody should have to endure those risks for a little pain relief. That’s why I’ve worked to find new, alternative therapies that won’t just turn the dial down on your pain, but will also save you from harmful side effects and keep you out of the hospital.
A natural remedythat measures up to powerful anti-inflammatory drugs
I’ve recently discovered a remedy that works just as well as NSAIDs – with a small fraction (if any) of the scary side effects.
I’ve been having such success with this product… and the science behind it is so good… that I’m surprised that I had to do so much digging to uncover it myself.
The product is called Limbrel, a ‘medical food’ that’s used to treat osteoarthritis. Also known as ‘flavocoxid’, it’s a proprietary blend of the extracts of powerful compounds from two different natural plants. The inventors of this medical food figured out how to isolate those molecules and put them into a supplement that can pack the same punch as a prescription drug.
The compounds in Limbrel are called ‘flavonoids’ – and they’re basically the ‘good stuff’ that make coloured fruits and vegetables, green tea, and red wine classify as ‘superfoods’.
For this blend, however, scientists used portions of the Chinese skullcap (Scutellaria baicalensis) and the Acacia catechu tree (also known as the Cutch Tree, Senegalia catechu).
The studies of Limbrel are staggering – because they show this medical food to be equally as effective as a NSAID and just as safe as a placebo.
There’s a very well-done study out of Russia that showed that Limbrel relieved pain just as well as a naproxen (Aleve).
Limbrel was able to reduce pain by an average of 85 per cent – with significantly fewer adverse effects to the patients’ stomach and kidneys.
That’s a big feat… and very impressive for a natural remedy.
These plant extractsdo more than just maskyour OA pain
Instead of just treating your symptoms, or covering up the pain, Limbrel also uses natural ways of reducing your body’s ability to trigger inflammation.
Now this gets a little technical, but common NSAIDs work by drastically reducing the amount of inflammation being produced by two of the body’s three pathways (COX 1 and COX 2).
But your body isn’t stupid. It knows that it needs to maintain a supply of some of these inflammation-causing chemicals for jobs that aren’t necessarily related to inflammation. So it just sends them through the third, remaining pathway (LOX) in order to meet these needs. And, believe it or not, that’s what causes a lot of the side effects with NSAIDs.
Limbrel, on the other hand, ‘spreads its wealth’ by slowing down each of the three arms of the inflammation cascade (COX1, COX2, and LOX) – and thus the body does not panic and divert the chemicals to the unblocked pathway.
Limbrel is one of the first remedies to be shown to reduce COX1, COX2, and LOX at the same time, which manages the UNDERLYING processes that lead to inflammation and arthritis.
And that’s precisely what we holistic doctors are always trying to get to – the root cause of the condition.
Now, all of this is pretty encouraging; but the most amazing thing is that there’s yet ANOTHER huge benefit linked to Limbrel.
As you know, flavonoids act as a powerful antioxidant in the body. This means that the natural substances in this medical food will go around your body and clear out free radicals – the molecules that are actually causing the joint damage in the first place.
Your gut will thank you for making the switch
The really good news about Limbrel is that it has almost ZERO risk to the stomach. Little to no gastrointestinal side effects have been found in studies, and I haven’t seen any problems with my patients.
In one study, Limbrel was better-tolerated than NSAIDs in 90 per cent of patients who had to stop NSAIDs due to gastrointestinal side effects. In fact, there were no reports of anyone experiencing gastrointestinal difficulties in a 90-day human clinical trial.
On top of that, another study gave rats normal dosages of Limbrel, and after two months, the scientists found zero damage in their stomach linings when examined under a microscope. In comparison, when rats are given NSAIDs, they almost always develop some damage that can be seen under the microscope at the two-month mark.
In fact, scientists have not been able to find a dose high enough to kill even ONE of their experimental animals!
Since you’re a human and not a rat, you can rest assured that there are very few interactions with other drugs – but you should always make sure your doctor knows everything you’re taking just to be sure.
A prescription-strength alternative you can trust
There is one slight wrinkle to this powerful remedy: medical foods are natural remedies that are so strong that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requires you to get a prescription for them.
But if you are (or have been) on a NSAID and have not found a natural remedy that can help manage your pain, consider talking to your doctor about Limbrel.
There is plenty of science behind it and it’s been around since 2004 and in the US Physicians’ Desk Reference since 2009.
If you need to educate your doctor, you can go to www.limbrel.com and print out some information.
Make sure you tell him that both of the main components of Limbrel have been approved for use in prescription products in Japan for over 20 years and often qualify for reimbursement by their national health insurance.
There are other exciting studies in progress with this medical food for use in treating other inflammatory conditions, so I’ll be sure to update you as the findings are reviewed and released.
But with any joint-care product, no matter what you use, the key is to start early – the longer you wait, the more pain, joint inflammation and damage you’ll be dealing with.
Dr. Glenn S. Rothfeld
Nutrition & Healing
Vol. 10, Issue 4 • April 2016
Full references and citations for this article are available in the downloadable PDF version of the monthly Nutrition and Healing issue in which this article appears.