In recent years, there has been growing interest in the potential benefits of boron supplementation for individuals with rheumatoid arthritis. In this article, I’ll explore the potential advantages of boron supplementation in the treatment of RA.
Boron is a trace mineral that is naturally present in soil, water, and certain foods. It plays a crucial role in various physiological processes, including bone health, hormone regulation, and immune function. While the exact mechanisms are not fully understood, boron has been hypothesized to have anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory effects, making it potentially beneficial for rheumatoid arthritis sufferers.
Rex E. Newnham, Ph.D., D.O., N.D., of Leeds, England, provided information on boron and arthritis to The Rheumatoid Disease Foundation in 1986. Dr. Newnham provided statistical support for the use of boron in treating or preventing osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Read his excellent paper on this here: Boron and RA.
One of the primary benefits of boron supplementation in RA is its potential anti-inflammatory properties. Inflammation is a key driver of joint damage and pain in rheumatoid arthritis. Research suggests that boron may inhibit the production of inflammatory cytokines, substances that play a role in the inflammatory response. By reducing inflammation, boron supplementation can help to alleviate symptoms and slow down the progression of joint damage in individuals with RA.
Boron also has a positive impact on bone health, which is particularly relevant for individuals with rheumatoid arthritis. RA is associated with increased bone loss, leading to osteoporosis and an increased risk of fractures. Boron supplementation has been shown to improve bone density and calcium metabolism, reducing the risk of osteoporosis and promoting healthier bone structure in people with RA.
Furthermore, boron may have immunomodulatory effects, influencing the functioning of the immune system. In rheumatoid arthritis, the immune system mistakenly attacks the body’s own tissues (supposedly), resulting in inflammation and joint damage. Boron may be able to regulate immune responses and modulate the production of certain immune cells, potentially helping to restore the balance in immune function and alleviate symptoms associated with RA.
Several small-scale studies and and substantial amounts of anecdotal evidence have shown promising results. For example, there’s an excellent article/review on the nutritional importance of boron and a specific mention regarding it’s anti-inflammatory benefits, quote:
“A number of papers have indicated that boron reduces levels of inflammatory biomarkers.20,36,37 In a recent human trial involving healthy male volunteers (n = 8), a significant increase in concentrations of plasma boron occurred 6 hours after supplementation with 11.6 mg of boron, coupled with significant decreases in levels of hs-CRP and TNF-α. One week of boron supplementation 10 mg/d resulted in a 20% decrease in the plasma concentration of TNF-α, from 12.32 to 9.97 pg/mL, and in remarkable decreases (approximately 50%) in plasma concentration of hs-CRP, from 1460 to 795 ng/mL, and of IL-6, from 1.55 to 0.87 pg/mL.”.
It is important to note that boron supplementation should be approached with caution, and rheumatoid arthritis sufferers should consult with their healthcare providers before starting any supplementation regimen. (As always, this has to be stated.)
In conclusion, boron supplementation has shown potential benefits in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis. Its anti-inflammatory, bone-protective, and immunomodulatory effects make it a promising supplement for RA sufferers.