Evening primrose oil (Oenothera biennis) is a rich source of gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), an essential fatty acid that has been shown to decrease joint pain and tenderness. Recommended dose: 240 mg daily.
Fish oil. The omega-3 fats EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) found in deep-water fish, such as salmon or herring, encourage the production of anti-inflammatory prostaglandins. These healthy fats also lower bad (LDL) cholesterol while raising good (HDL) cholesterol. Recommended dose: 1,500 mg, 3x/day.
Ginger (Zingiber officinale) is believed to suppress cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and other inflammation-related enzymes. Preliminary studies show ginger may also lower cholesterol and prevent blood clotting by keeping fibrinogen levels low in the blood. Recommended dose: 200–300 mg in gelcaps, 3x/day.
Turmeric (Curcuma longa) is often used in combination with ginger. It has been shown to kill Helicobacter pylori a bacteria that may cause stomach ulcers and ignite inflammation. Recommended dose: 0.3–1 ml of the standardized liquid extract, 3x/day; or 300–500 mg standardized curcumin capsules, 1–3x/day. For better absorption, many take curcumin in combination with bioperine, or black pepper extract.
Vitamin C was found to lower levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), a biomarker for chronic inflammation, by 24 percent (Journal of the American College of Nutrition, 2004, vol. 23, no. 2). Recommended dose: Study participants took 515 mg of vitamin C daily for two months. In the study, the reduction in CRP occurred only when vitamin C was taken alone. Patients who received an antioxidant containing vitamins C and E and alpha-lipoic acid experienced no significant drop in CRP.