I have been newly diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis. I’m thinking of stopping my medication as I get nauseous after taking them. I recently read in an article which says that acupuncture has many health benefits and one of them includes relief from arthritis knee pain(http://www.physiomobility.com/blog/health-benefits-acupuncture/ ). Has anyone done it for arthritis? Is it safe? How long and often should I receive the treatment?
Newly diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis
Not all arthritis is the same. I think rheu. arth. is a special condition. I have another form of arth. called "degenerative disk disease"; it was very difficult to get under control and a lot was tried including drugs and in and out patient physical therapy for some time (4-6 months); and one of the things that helped a little was acupuncture, but it wasn't the first course of action.
It was, however, prescribed by a physician, not me. I don't generally think its wise to prowl the internet to play doctor on yourself, especially if your doctor doesn't know about it. The doctor nixed chiropractice, for example.
Although its a permanent condition, I am not in pain and have had only one minor relapse.
If you are willing to try acupuncture then try eating strict Paleo for 60 days. I have seen severe cases significantly improve eating Paleo - my sister for one. She was crushed by the condition and even further devastated by the meds. She is off the meds for about a year and is serious about it. Those meds can be nasty to live with and the long term trouble is not good. She is hiking and biking and pain free. Her doctor is very surprised.
That "paleo diet" is one of several fad notions not supported by science at either end (information about paleolithic human diets or studies of those who currently use the diet).
That said, the diet probably won't hurt you; and might help general health depending on what your current diet is; but any expectation it would do something specifically beneficial for rheumatoid arthritis - well - I think you need to talk to a doctor; not just cruise the internet or used bookstores.
There are other anti-inflammation diets out there and many doctors do support them - a "lite" version of Paleo. The Paleo diet is one of the more thorough. Many doctors in general look only to the Govt and it's recommendations. I have seen it work and also know doctors who embrace it. The problem with the Paleo diet is that you have to learn about it and then implement it. It is not that simple to do it. I am not saying that it will always work and I am not suggesting that anyone can just start doing it... it takes serious commitment.
I also will not tell you that it WILL work for you or anyone else. It may or may not help RA, but in your case, you won't know until you try it.
You might be surprised to realize how few doctors are versed in diet in general. Doctors use drugs. My sister's doctor has a huge arsenal of drugs that he prescribes. He really was surprised to see her improvements. It has been remarkable. He cannot recommend diet, it's not his field. It is not standard of care.
From Eva T
A note on paleo treats like cookies, brownies, cakes and everything in that category: I don’t have an issue if people eat them, but please don’t consider them in your first 30 days if you’ve had issues with overconsumption of hyper-palatable foods. A paleo brownie is still a brownie. If you’re trying to reset your palate, then do yourself a favor and abstain as you’re getting used to eating “normal” foods like meat and veggies. I don’t keep baked goods in my house, I don’t “bond” with my kids over making cookies, and I advise my nutrition clients to do the same."