Q and A: Herbs for Gout

 In every issue of Herbs for Health, professionals from a variety of health-care fields answer your questions about using medicinal herbs. Herbalist Mindy Green and physician Robert Rountree responded for this issue.

Q and A

Several readers have inquired about herbal treatments for gout. We consulted our resources to find a simple recipe or two to help avoid gout attacks. It is, however, a serious and sometimes debilitating illness requiring consultation with your health-care provider.

Gout is a type of arthritis in which uric acid crystals build up, causing severe inflammation and intense pain. Although many joints can be attacked, the most common site is the big toe.

In Home Herbal (Dorling Kindersley, 1995), Penelope Ody recommends a diuretic tea containing dried celery seed, heather flowers, and yarrow. She suggests combining 50 g of the celery seed, 15 g of the heather flowers, and 15 g of the yarrow and storing the mix in an airtight container. To make a tea, steep 2 teaspoons of the mix in 1 to 2 cups of boiling water. Drink 1 to 2 cups daily.

The information offered in Q & A is not intended to be a substitute for ­advice from your health-care provider.

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