Devil’s Claw

Devil’s claw is a medicinal plant. Harpagophytum (botanical name) is a Greek word that means “hook plant.”
This African plant derives its name from the look of its fruit, which is coated in hooks that are used to cling to animals and disseminate the seeds. The plant’s roots and tubers are used to prepare medication. Devil’s claw is used to treat atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), arthritis, gout, muscular pain (myalgia), back pain, tendonitis, chest discomfort, GI upset or heart burn, fever, and migraine headache. It’s also used to treat issues including infertility, menstruation irregularities, allergic responses, appetite loss, and kidney and bladder illness.

Devil’s claw

The plant has traditionally been used to cure rheumatism, arthritis, inflammation, and gastrointestinal problems.
Preparations of devil’s claw root are now utilised as anti-inflammatory medicines and pain relievers.
It contains anti-inflammatory, pain-relieving, antioxidant, and appetite-suppressing properties, according to laboratory and animal research. It also aids in the prevention of bone loss induced by inflammation.
Patients with osteoarthritis of the hip or knee, as well as rheumatic diseases, have shown to benefit from it in human trials.
More studies are required.

Health benefits :

The compound harpagoside, which is thought to have anti-inflammatory and analgesic (pain-relieving) effects, is responsible for many of the advantages of devil’s claw. Rheumatic diseases involving the joints, ligaments, tendons, bones, and muscles are often treated with this herb. Back pain, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and tendinitis are among them.
Some think it can help with fibromyalgia, sciatica, nerve pain, gout, and Lyme disease symptoms.

Dried root infusions might help with indigestion and appetite stimulation.
To treat sores, ulcers, and boils, an ointment prepared from the root can be used on the skin.

While there isn’t enough proof to back up its claims, a few tiny studies have shown that devil’s claw might be quite helpful in some conditions.
Some of the most important results are as follows :

Osteoarthritis :

Taking devil’s claw orally, whether alone, with additional components, or in combination with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), appears to help alleviate osteoarthritis pain. Some patients who use devil’s claw for pain relief appear to be able to reduce the amount of NSAIDs they consume.

Back pain :

The consumption of devil’s claw appears to alleviate low-back discomfort.
It appears to be on par with certain non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications in terms of effectiveness (NSAIDs).

Rheumatoid Arthritis :

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune condition in which the body’s immune system attacks its own joints. Unlike osteoarthritis, which is caused by inflammatory chemicals like interleukin 6 (IL-6), rheumatoid arthritis is caused by immunological proteins known as autoantibodies. These autoantibodies cause acute pain and inflammation by directing the body’s own defences to the joints. While devil’s claw appears to suppress the generation of IL-6, making it beneficial in the treatment of osteoarthritis, its mode of action renders it only slightly effective in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis inflammation.

Side effects :

If taken in moderation, devil’s claw seems to be safe, however its long-term effectiveness has yet to be determined.
Diarrhea is the most prevalent adverse effect. Stomach discomfort, headaches, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, loss of taste, changes in blood pressure, irregular heartbeats (arrhythmia), and ringing in the ears are some of the other symptoms .
Allergic responses have been reported, however they are exceedingly uncommon. It should not be used in individuals who have or are being treated for cardiac rhythm problems since it can alter heart rhythm.

It may also decrease blood sugar. People on diabetic medicines should avoid devil’s claw since the two together might cause hypoglycemia (an abnormal drop in blood sugar). It should not be used in patients with diarrhea-prone irritable bowel syndrome (IBS-D), gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), or peptic ulcers due to gastrointestinal adverse effects.
Because the treatment may enhance bile production, it is not recommended for those who have gallstones. Because it might cause uterine contractions, devil’s claw should not be used during pregnancy.
The supplement should also be avoided by nursing moms and toddlers.