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Thursday, October 23, 2008

White Willow Bark Tea for Stiffness and Joint Pain

I have a problem stomaching most NSAID type drugs. I can take tylenol but from my experience it doesn't work on arthritis anyhow. Ibuprofen works but it has to be in my system all the time and after a couple doses it makes me sick. Aleeve works but it also is dangerous to use if you have high blood pressure. I don't feel my arthritis is so bad that I need RX drugs so I have a little 'secret recipe' I use instead.

I buy a bag of white willow bark online from a bulk herb website. I'm not sure which website I used last time-sometimes they change so I just do a google search whenever I need a new bag. The bag is enough to last me at least one season of cool weather. My current bag is over a year old. I keep the herb in a dark solid colored bag in the freezer so it stays fresh.

To make my tea or 'infusion' I just take a 2 quart sauce pan and fill it with water. I then add a small handful of willow bark. I bring it to a boil then turn it down to a low simmer. I set a timer for 15 minutes. After it cools I strain it into a large mason jar and keep it in the fridge. It lasts a few days.

To have a cup of tea I just reheat a cup in the microwave for about 1 minute.

Usually I do notice an 'easing' of my symptoms after drinking a few cups a day of this for a few days. Herbal medicines do not act as fast as OTC drugs but they can also have much less side effects. Willow contains the same active ingredient that is in aspirin--but it is not so concentrated and therefore does not tear up your stomach.

I think its a good little helper for mild arthritis pain and stiffness. I use it every year when it starts to get cooler outside.

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