Devils’ claw is a perennial plant with medicinal properties that have been with us for centuries. It’s native to South Africa, and they’ve used it to cure various illnesses since ancient times. The medicines derived from Devil’s claw have become popular they are now used in European countries. The excellent anti-inflammatory properties have made it a favorite medicine not only for arthritis but several illnesses as well. These include bursitis, gout, tendonitis, rheumatism, headaches and many more. Let’s take a look at the health benefits of Devil’s claw:
Natural Relief for Pain
There has been research conducted regarding the medical potential of devil’s claw as a pain reliever. It’s proven effective in relieving pain in the shoulders, neck, and lower back. People who took devil’s claw extracts every day for one month have experienced noteworthy reductions in their usual pains. They also needed fewer painkillers to deal with their condition. The root and tuber extracts of devil’s claw are standard in South African traditional medicine for centuries in the treatment of various illnesses. New studies have yet to fully understand how the extracts work in reducing inflammations and inflammatory pain. What is clear is that the extracts are beneficial in the treatment of various conditions with adverse effects occurring in only a few individuals.
Contains a lot of anti-oxidants
Devil’s claw extracts can indeed prevent diseases because of their rich antioxidant contents. Studies made on devil’s claw showed that it’s mainly rich in the water-soluble type of antioxidants. Further studies also revealed that the anti-inflammatory properties of the devil’s claw are the results of these antioxidants.
Arthritis is one of the diseases typically treated with devil’s claw extracts since long time ago. Early European colonists in South Africa came to know about the devil’s claw plant and since then has frequently been used to treat several illnesses. Patients with arthritis, for instance, took the medication for many months and they showed considerable improvements in mobility and experienced less pain.
Many medical practitioners now accept the devil’s claw extracts as a supportive medication in the treatment of rheumatic diseases. These illnesses are usually characterized by chronic inflammations and pain in the muscles, fibrous tissues, and joints. But some studies are doubtful on the effectiveness of devil’s claw extracts, and they conclude that it only has a small effect in the treatment of arthritis and lower back pains.
Supports the health of the kidneys
Aside from the various studies on the devil’s claw’s anti-inflammatory properties, a group is also researching its potential in the treatment of a group of kidney diseases known as glomerular diseases. This is still inflammation-related, and it refers to a disorder where the kidney’s tiny filters that are responsible for cleaning the blood get damaged.
In a conducted test, the devil’s claw antioxidants helped to suppress the formation of nitrites. This suggested that the devil’s claw extracts can be a potential anti-inflammatory drug that can be useful in treating glomerular inflammatory diseases in the kidney.
Good For Digestion
Devil’s claw extracts have been traditionally used in helping stimulate a person’s appetite. This is important to persons who are recovering from long illnesses or helping those who need to gain extra weight. The devil’s claw is also helpful in the maintenance of digestive health and in dealing with temporary discomforts like upset stomach, indigestion, and heartburn. Because of its abundant antioxidants and its anti-inflammatory properties, devil’s claw extracts can also be useful as a supplementary treatment for specific diseases like Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.
Helps Lower Blood Pressure and Cholesterol
Using devil’s claw extracts can cause the loss of water in the body through urination. Here, the extract serves as a diuretic. For people who retain too much water, doctors prescribe diuretics to lower down water in the body and consequently, lower the blood volume and bring it back to normal. When blood volume gets regulated, blood pressure will be well-maintained. There is also a potential of devil’s claw extracts in lowering cholesterol absorption in the intestine. Devil’s claw contains beta-sterols which are natural plant sterols. These aren’t absorbed into the bloodstream and, more importantly, they also prevent bad cholesterol absorption. Such property will surely make the devil’s claw a great “friend” for people who have high cholesterol levels.
Beneficial for Skin
Because of its long history in traditional medicine, people have already been using devil’s claw to deal with skin concerns like boils and sores. It can easily be topically applied in the treatment of minor scratches, wounds, and bruises. For its anti-inflammatory property, it can be topically applied to ease joint and muscle pains. It has yet to be scientifically proven that it can treat skin conditions but it’s available as a topical ointment.
Treats wounds, sores, and migraine headaches
Applying devil’s claw derivatives on wounds and sores can suppress the pain and inflammation associated with them. This is the reason why the extract is commonly used as a topical analgesic for temporary relief from pain. A migraine is a common ailment that affects millions of people and surprisingly, the cause, to this day, is still unknown. Luckily, we can get temporary relief from migraines by using analgesics. Devil’s claw extracts as an analgesic can help prevent recurring migraine headaches.
Helps Fight Chronic Inflammation
Reducing inflammation is one of devil’s claw’s valuable properties. Inflammation is the root of almost all diseases. Recent studies have shown that devil claw extracts can help in the inhibition of tumor necrosis factor alpha or TNF-Alpha. This is a cytokine or cell-signaling protein that’s involved in normal inflammations that can occur in the body as it maintains the immune system. When the TNF-Alpha gets over-activated, chronic inflammation will inevitably occur, and this could lead to various diseases. Presently, inhibiting TNF-Alpha is now a primary field of study in relation to the prevention of diseases which are inflammatory.
May Promote Weight Loss
Devil’s claw may is becoming a “wonder drug” because it’s useful in the treatment of many illnesses. Now, it can also be of assistance to those who want to lose weight. New studies have shown that the devil’s claw can also stop or slow down the production of ghrelin, also known as the hunger hormone. When ghrelin production gets suppressed, appetites go to lower levels. This means less food intake, and consequently, will lead to loss of weight.