Arnica is one of the best-kept healing secrets out there. It is native to Europe and has been used there for healing over the centuries. Here in America it seems we are just catching on to some of these amazing medicinal helpers.
Arnica Montana is a homeopathic medicine made from the Arnica flower in the sunflower family. In flower form arnica should not be taken directly as it is incredibly strong and needs to be diluted. It can be taken internally though use of homeopathic “pellets”, tinctures, or applied topically as an ointment.
It’s recommended for use on pain, bruising, muscle strains or sprains, muscle soreness, and speeding healing in general. It can be used post work out, after traumatic injury or accident and is often prescribed after surgery to speed healing and recovery time.
A randomized study published in 2007 looked at a group of just over two hundred people with osteoarthritis in their hands. It was found that an arnica gel applied topically worked just as well as daily ibuprofen, and with minimal side effects.
Another study of 79 arthritic knee patients showed that arnica gel was applied twice daily for three to six weeks, they experienced significant reductions in pain and stiffness and had marked function improvement.
It can be found online or at most health food stores and usually will come in a little 2” tube or small bottle. The cover twists allowing the tiny round pellets to fall into the cap. They are then taken sublingually for super fast absorption directly into your blood stream. Pellets are taken 2-4 times a day, 5 at a time.
It is important to note that these, as well as other homeopathic remedies, are best taken straight from the cap and placed under the tongue. Not only are you less likely to drop them (as they are very small), the oils on your skin can alter them making them less effective over all.
Do not use mint toothpaste or mint products for 30 minutes after taking any homeopathic medicine as well – mint will neutralize some of the benefits.
So, next time you are at the natural foods store, grab some arnica for your medicine cabinet. You never know when you just might need it.