Rheumatoid Arthritis Back to Articles Rheumatoid arthritis is a serious form of arthritis where the immune system which is supposed to defend the body, actually starts to attack it. It is more serious than say osteoarthritis simply because in addition to the standard joint pain and swelling, rheumatoid arthritis can also cause anemia, poor circulation and debilitating fatigue. The best natural treatments for rheumatoid arthritis are the same as osteoarthritis, however with more emphasis being placed on diet. Here is a look at a few that have proven to be particularly helpful. Heat Application Whether it be electric blankets, heating pads or hot packs, applying heat to painful joints can offer substantial relief. One method of heat application that has shown to be particularly helpful is hot baths, especially when infused with essential oils such as rosemary and eucalyptus. Cold Application At the other end of the spectrum is the application of cold. This is most effective and appropriate when your joints are really inflamed. A cold pack or bag of peas compressed against the area can bring much needed relief in a short period of time. This is due to the fact that the cold reduces the swelling fast and also stimulates the nerve endings which acts as a distraction against deeper joint aches and pains. Vegetarian Diet Recent studies have shown that people with rheumatoid arthritis showed significant improvement after just 30 days of switching to a vegetarian diet. This diet also excluded eggs, dairy, gluten, caffeine, alcohol, salt and refined sugar. Going vegetarian may seem like a daunting prospect if you are a heavy meat eater however being vegetarian is not about just eating vegetables / salads. There are lots of beautiful tasting, hearty dishes that can be prepared. If you are interested in this just do a search online for vegetarian recipes. You will find plenty. However, if vegetarianism is not an option for you, the next best thing is to really tune into your body after you eat. This will give you some insight into which particular foods seem to flare up your symptoms. You can then decide whether or not to reduce or exclude these foods from your diet. These are just a few things you can do to treat your rheumatoid arthritis naturally. I know this is an awful condition to have to deal with (my Mother has it) and my heart goes out to you. Just keep an open mind and keep trying new things until you have got enough 'things that help' in your back pocket that you can draw on as needed. For a truly excellent and professional massage therapy session visit this Massage Gold Coast website and make a booking with Tania Hodder. She is one of few Gold Coast massage therapists that I highly recommend. Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Jamie_Thomas Jamie Thomas - EzineArticles Expert Author