Is Boron a Natural Arthritis Cure?

The element Boron was first isolated in 1808, but was not actually recognised as an element until 1824. However, it is only in more recent years that studies have shown the importance of boron in the diet and that it could play a part in the prevention of osteoporosis and osteoarthritis.

Osteoporosis SignThe nutritional value of boron has been investigated particularly actively since 1989 when the U.S. Department of Agriculture conducted an experiment which saw a group of postmenopausal women take 3 mg of boron a day. The results of the trial showed that boron can reduce excretion of calcium by 44%, and activate estrogen and vitamin D.

It has also been observed that following absorption, boron seems to concentrate to a higher degree in bone than in blood. Once intake of boron has ceased though, a rapid drop in bone boron levels is seen with any excess boron being quickly excreted from the body in urine, faeces, bile and sweat. As extra boron is not stored in the body, a regular of intake of the mineral is therefore required for optimal health.

There are a number of important nutrients that have been shown to interact with boron. These include vitamin D, calcium, magnesium, phosphorous and copper. Many of these are also known to contribute to bone density and joint health. In addition, anti-inflammatory actions have also been attributed to boron too.

FSA Boron QuoteThe Food Standards Agency in the UK state… “Boron is thought to help the body make use of the glucose, fats, oestrogen and other minerals, such as calcium, copper and magnesium, in the food we eat.”

All of the evidence for boron supplementation being beneficial for sufferers of osteoarthritis has resulted in a number of trials being carried out in the last few years. Whilst not entirely conclusive, these seem to indicate that many osteoarthritis sufferers do see an improvement after taking a boron supplement. Although there is often an initial period when an aggravation of symptoms is reported (this is known as Herxheimer response) for up to 3 weeks, those who notice an improvement generally do so within four weeks.


Kale, Avocado and AlmondsSources of Boron

Of course, boron intake can also be increased through a dietary change. Boron occurs naturally in all foods produced from plants. Some of the best sources of the mineral include green vegetables, fruit and nuts. Of these, soya, prunes, almonds, peanuts, pecans, grapes, raisins, avocado and wine are all particularly rich in boron.

Legumes, nuts and avocados contain 1.0-4.5 mg boron per 100g, while other fruits and vegetables provide 0.1-0.6 mg boron in every 100g. As boron does not readily accumulate within the tissues of animals, meat and dairy products are poor sources of the mineral, providing less than 0.6 mg boron per 100g.


OsteotraceBoron Supplements

For those wishing to boost their intake of boron by taking a boron supplement, there are a number of products available. One of the longest established is OsteoTrace, which has been specifically formulated by ARONHA (Arthritis, Rheumatism and Osteoporosis Natural Healthcare Association). OsteoTrace contains boron along with a balance of other essential nutrients and complimentary vitamins which are thought to be beneficial for sufferers of osteoporosis and osteoarthritis.