Salix alba, more commonly called white willow bark has been used for traditionally for fighting inflammation as it contains a natural compound called salicin (which is similar to aspirin (salicyclic acid).
The benefit of white willow bark over aspirin is that some people taking aspirin for their osteoarthritis get an upset stomach, whereas no such side effects are found with the natural white willow bark.
In clinical studies, the effectiveness of white willow bark to treat this condition have been mixed. e.g. In 2001 a study showed white willow bark was effective in alleviating pain, yet in another study in 2004, they found that the willow bark was not more effective than a placebo in reducing pain.
Clearly a need for more studies before we can be sure of the benefits.
If you want to take white willow bark to see if it works for you, I suggest you read the guidelines on in an article on the About.com website called “White Willow Bark for Osteoarthritis”. In that article they talk about the safety aspects of using this substance, in particular who should avoid using it, and what other supplements can cause problems when taken in combination.
Some other Natural Pain Relievers
In this video, she outlines three natural pain relievers:
The previous video showed the author downing a glass of tumeric. In the next video, tumeric also takes central stage:
Prescription drugs prescribed for pain can have serious side-effects. This video gives you specific data, and then goes into the health benefits of using tumeric root as a natural anti-inflammatory.