Natural treatment for ankylosing spondylitis and inflammatory arthritis

When I was diagnosed with Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS), and told by doctors it is an auto-immune disease, a form of inflammatory arthritis, for which the cause is unknown, and treatment consists of ‘heavy drugs’, I was devastated.  Google searches didn’t yield up more information, and it took me a long time to uncover effective, natural ways of treating the disease. In the process, I also discovered that the causes are in fact known to some researchers. This article covers the best of what I know about AS and how to manage it.

(By the way, please read all the way to the end before you leave a comment.)

Natural Treatment with Vinegar

After my first post on my old blog about AS, one of my readers, John, left a comment telling me that drinking apple cider vinegar removed all his symptoms of AS. This has been life-changing for me. Vinegar is the best treatment I have found, and after a year on vinegar, I still feel great.

It seems vinegar was suggested by Margaret Hills, back in the 1950s, in her book about inflammatory arthritis. From her nursing training, she understood that inflammation is a build up of acid. It’s the acid that gradually damages our joints if we don’t get rid of the inflammation. She also knew that when you consume vinegar, it becomes alkaline in the body. So her theory was that the alkaline vinegar would neutralise the acidic inflammation. Lots of people with all kinds of inflammatory arthritis have found relief this way, thanks to her book on the topic.

Instructions for how to take apple cider vinegar:

Use live, raw vinegar, with the cultures in it. If you see little strings or sediment, that’s a good sign. Any kind of vinegar is fine, though apple cider vinegar apparently offers many other health benefits. I personally make my own vinegar by fermenting kombucha for longer and prefer to drink that. It’s full of probiotic cultures and kombucha is also reputed to have a wonderful detox effect.

Put 1-2 tablespoons of vinegar in a glass and top up with water. Never drink vinegar straight or you’ll burn your insides. Drink, and follow immediately with plain water to rinse out your mouth. Leaving vinegar on your teeth 2-4 times a day can erode the enamel on your teeth, so always wash it off. You can also drink it through a straw, taking care not to get vinegar on your teeth. This a bit intense at the back of your throat.

When you first start taking vinegar, it will feel very sour, so put less vinegar in your glass, and gradually work up to larger amounts.  My kombucha vinegar is much milder than the apple cider vinegar from the shop so I put more in the glass.  I aim to have it as sour as I can stand.

Margaret Hills suggests adding honey, and using warm water so the honey will dissolve, to make it easier and pleasanter to drink. I prefer to use stevia drops instead, as they have no calories.

I’ve found I do best if I have 4 glasses of vinegar-water a day. I have a glass on rising, another mid-morning, one mid-afternoon, and a final glass before or after dinner. These days I put it all in a one litre drink bottle along with 5 drops of stevia and a teaspoon of Vitamin C. The Vitamin C helps me fight off colds – it’s not for the AS. But I’ve noticed that having it in my drink bottle is more effective than taking a single dose of Vitamin C morning or night. I have noticed with the vinegar water that if I drink the entire litre, say, in the morning, it works just as effectively as if I spread it evenly over the day. But I find this makes me feel a little nauseous on an empty stomach so it’s best for me to sip it slowly after food.

My favourite way to drink it is with this recipe I copied from a Braggs drink:

In a one-litre bottle place 4 tbsp apple cider vinegar, ginger infusion (I grate ginger and steep it in boiling water then strain – I keep a bottle of this in the fridge ready to go), 40 drops of stevia, and then top it up with water. This is delicious like a soft drink – but a bit intense for every day. I use only 5 drops of stevia most days.

How long does it take to work and who will it help?

It took about 5 days before I started to feel better. After that, for the next 10 days, every day was a little better. Apparently it takes a whole month to get the maximum benefit of this remedy.

This remedy helps all kinds of inflammatory arthritis, including rheumatoid arthritis and reactive arthritis. It should remove inflammation, so pain associated with inflammation should be reduced or disappear. It won’t help pain that is caused by damage to your joints that has already occurred though.

Natural Treatment with Diet

Before I discovered the vinegar treatment, I managed my AS by eating a starch-free, lactose-free diet.  Since starting vinegar, I’ve found I can eat starch and lactose, and my symptoms are better than they were when I followed the diet, but some readers of my blog have reported that they do better by following both the diet and the vinegar treatment, or they prefer the diet than the vinegar.

A starch-free diet is a restrictive, difficult regimen to follow, but the pain and degenerative problems caused by AS can be a very good motivator if the diet works.  Unfortunately starch-free diets are pretty-much unheard of in our society, so it can be challenging to work out exactly what you can eat and what you can’t. I found that eating only the tiniest amount of starch (a single breadcrumb, or a pea) was enough to set off my symptoms dramatically, so it took some time of following a very strict diet, and gradually adding in one food at a time, to discover what foods I could eat and what I couldn’t.

Everyone’s body responds differently to the diet, so if you are trying to make this work and struggling with it, I would suggest starting with a very limited diet of foods known to be starch free, and after the pain has reduced, add in one new food at a time, observing your pain levels the day after adding in the new food. Some people tolerate lactose fine, others need to eliminate that from their diet as well. I will list here what I ate on this diet as I found this sort of info on others’ blogs incredibly helpful in designing my diet.

I could eat:

Rice: glutinous rice – both black and white. Glutinous rice has a different-shaped starch molecule than regular starch, and in me it didn’t trigger my symptoms.

Vegetables: broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, leek, brown onion, lettuce, rocket, celery, spinach, silverbeet, red and yellow capsicum, carrot, pumpkin, fennel, zucchini, avocado.

Fruits: tomatoes, berries, papaya, grapes, apples, pears, pineapple, melons, passionfruit, persimmon, mango, coconut, citrus fruits (juiced and well peeled are fine but avoid the white pith).

Protein:
All unprocessed meat
Seafood (unprocessed only)
Eggs
Blanched almonds
Pine nuts
Sesame seeds

Dairy:
Butter
Dry curd cottage cheese
Milk, cream and yoghurt to which I had added 10 drops of Lacteeze per litre, and left to sit in the fridge for 2 days. Lacteeze is a product consisting of lactase enzymes, which over the course of two days, consume the lactose in the milk and convert it to glucose. The resulting milk is pleasantly sweeter as a result. Be sure to purchase Lacteeze drops, not a tablet or powdered form, which may contain starch.

Condiments:
Sea salt
Mustard
All herbs
Garlic infused oil (remove garlic before serving)
Spice infused oil (remove spices before serving)
Fish sauce,
soy sauce,
tamari
Vinegar
Honey (a little sugar is ok)

Fats: olive oil, coconut oil, butter, lard, animal fat.

I couldn’t eat:

Grains (wheat, non-glutinous (normal) rice, spelt, corn, etc)

Starchy vegetables & fruit:
Peas
beans
potato
sweet potato
beetroot
banana

Processed meat such as sausages or salami unless I could guarantee it was made without starchy ingredients

Nuts or seeds other than blanched almonds

Dairy products with lactose:
Milk
Yoghurt
Soft cheeses
White cheese 

Thickened sauces such as oyster sauce or ketjap manis, or processed curry pastes

Condiments:
Ginger
garlic
pepper
spices.

A typical day of meals:

On rising: 1 tsp cod liver oil in dissolved in freshly squeezed orange juice. (Fish oil apparently helps arthritis.)

Breakfast: Lactose free yoghurt, milk and cream (made the same way as yoghurt), muesli made from finely chopped activated blanched almonds, dried coconut, black sesame seeds, and dark coloured fruit such as berries, peaches, apricots, papaya.

Mid morning: Vegetable juice made with kale and beet leaves from my garden, beetroot and apple, or a cup of warm bone broth (stock) with fish sauce and vinegar added.

Lunch: big plate of vegies or salad, with some eggs, meat or fish, topped with at least a tablespoon of butter.  Sometimes soup. Sometimes black glutinous rice with eggs and greens.

Mid afternoon: Activated blanched almonds and dried fruit.  (If I didn’t eat almonds twice a day I crave carbohydrates.  And I can’t get through the afternoon without a snack.)

Dinner: Another big plate of vegies, often a roast or a stew, with meat or fish, and plenty of butter.

Dessert: I often craved something in the evenings, and when the cravings were high, I’d eat either a bowl of fruit with lactose-free cream, or else I have a homemade icypole made with egg yolk, lactose-free cream or dry curd cottage cheese, strawberries and honey.

Drinks: through the day I drank two glasses of lactose-free milk, 1-2 glasses rejuvelac, 2 or more glasses beetroot kvass, and sometimes I had a herbal tea such as roibos or the korean corn tea.

About glutinous rice

I read on an AS blog that glutinous rice is made up of a different form of starchy molecule – amylopectin, while most starchy products are made up of amylose.  Apparently klebsiella bacteria can consume amylose but not amylopectin!  Glutinous rice is made up of amylopectin, not amylose, so theoretically it should be safe for those of us with AS to eat.  My first attempts at this failed – I bought a black rice which I thought was glutinous rice, but now I think was actually not glutinous.  At first it was fine but after a while my klebsiella evolved and I began to get symptoms from it. I then sourced a proper glutinous rice and had no symptoms from eating that over a longer term.

Diet issues

While once I had adjusted to the diet, I was okay on it for a year, but after that I think some stores of nutrition became depleted, because I found it increasingly difficult to follow, especially living without wheat.  I  noticed that when I didn’t eat wheat for a long time, I began to get desperate cravings.  It felt like having low blood sugar.  If I ignored it, my symptoms become progressively worse, so that I became extremely ill.  If I broke my diet and eat wheat, I felt better, so much better, and all my cravings would go away again, for about ten days. When I tried to quit dairy I found the same experience. Some people seem to do fine on this diet and don’t report the problems I felt, and I never did get to the bottom of how to handle it.

About Ankylosing Spondylitis And Its Causes

AS is a form of inflammatory arthritis, where your joints become inflamed. When you have the fluid of inflammation sitting around your joints for long enough, eventually that liquid erodes the cartilage that protects your joints.  Once the cartilage is eroded, the damage is irreversible, and also very painful.  So it’s important to treat the AS in some way – leaving it untreated will eventually lead to permanent joint damage and pain.

When Google searches for natural treatment for AS didn’t yield up anything for me, my family urged me to do some proper medical research.  My sister showed me how to search online medical journals, to see what the very latest research was for AS.  I also noticed that AS was often grouped with other auto-immune diseases such as MS, and broadened my search to see what was helping auto-immune diseases in general.  I started making a habit of trawling the medical journals at night once my son was in bed. If you’d like to read more about how to DIY your own medical research, I’ve written about that here.

It took me two months, but eventually I found IT – the answer. Here’s the real deal on AS.  There is a rheumatologist in the UK, a Dr Alan Ebringer, who has been researching AS for 35 years, and has published nearly sixty research papers.  I have read several of his papers and can see how he slowly built up a picture that explained AS and how to treat it through diet.

Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS) is a form of reactive arthritis that follows an infection by the bacteria klebsiella pnuemonae.  The disease only occurs in people who have the HLA-B27 gene (which I do).  Although 5% of AS patients do not have the gene – Ebringer thinks that the disease in these patients is actually a different entity.  Klebsiella pnuemonae is remarkably similar in molecular make up to the HLA-B27 gene.  Hence, when the body makes antibodies to klebsiella, the antibodies also

Klebsiella is in the digestive tracts of 40% of people, and tends to be an opportunistic bacteria that creates disease in people whose immunity is lowered.  I now believe that I came down with a klebsiella infection in May 2008, at a time when my immune system was in very low state, just before I changed my diet to traditional foods.  I had a very sudden onset of high fever, chills and terrible cough, which is consistent with the symptoms of community-caught klebsiella infection.   I was so ill that I still clearly remember the day that I came down with it.  It took me three months to recover, and despite visiting the doctor and being suspected as having whooping cough, the tests came back negative for this.  I now know that commercial labs don’t have a test for klebsiella, which explains why I wasn’t diagnosed at the time.  Several months later I started experiencing symptoms of AS.

If klebsiella could be eradicated from my digestive tract long term, it’s likely that my immune system would register the invader as gone, and would stop attacking the B27 genes.  However, killing them with antibiotics doesn’t help, because the bacteria is so prevalent in our community that they tend to return.  Sulphasalazine is a drug with (often) unpleasant side effects that is commonly used to treat AS.  It kills klebsiella, which is now thought to be the reason for its (somewhat) effectiveness.  However, when sulphasalazine is discontinued, symptoms tend to return within some weeks or months, likely because the klebsiella have recolonised the digestive tract.  Klebsiella feeds on starch, so removing their food source in my digestive  tract can starve/subdue them, resulting in a lowered immune reaction.  When we eat starch, some of it tends to remain undigested in the digestive tract, creating in an abundant food source for the klebsiella.  Clinical experience has shown that low starch diets help all patients with AS.  Lactose is a secondary food source for klebsiella so elimination of lactose is also essential for some people.

In clinical practise, all 600 of his patients have shown high levels of klebsiella, and those who have managed to adhere to a low starch diet (reduced intake of flour and potatoes) have shown a significant improvement in symptoms, although damage done by the disease cannot be undone.

Crohn’s disease is also associated with AS.  Patients with Crohn’s also have antibodies to the klebsiella bacterium.  It is thought that Crohn’s disease and symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) are part of the AS spectrum.  Low starch diets also help people with Crohn’s disease.

One of Ebringer’s patients, Carol Sinclair, who has both AS and IBS, has written a book, The IBS Low Starch Diet, which reveals how to manage this diet.  She suggests eradicating all grains, cereals, lentils and pulses from the diet.  If symptoms remain or recur, then eliminate rice and potato products (including sweet potato).  Should symptoms remain or recur, then eliminate numerous other foods which include low levels of starch, including cooked vegetables and spices.  There is a simple test to determine the starch level of a food.  Buy iodine from a chemist, and place a drop on the food.  If it contains starch, the colour of the iodine will change.  It darkens from orange to shades ranging from inky blue to black.  Some fruits and vegetables that are picked unripe (such as many found in supermarkets) contain high levels of starch, but have no starch when picked at full ripeness.  Some vegetables develop starch in cooking but are starch-free in their raw state (actually the starch is present in the raw state but shielded by an “envelope” that goes through the digestive tract undamaged; cooking destroys the envelope and releases the starch).  The iodine test assists in determining which foods are safe to eat.

The goal of the diet is to find out which and how much starch needs to be eliminated to maintain a pain-free, symptom-free life.  Not everyone needs to eliminate all starch.  One AS sufferer reports that after a strict no starch diet for 5 months, eating only meat, fish, vegetables, salad and fruit, he has been able to reintroduce bread, but cannot eat pasta, potatoes or rice.  Carol herself has found that over time she has needed to eliminate more foods in order to keep her symptoms under control.

Following a low starch diet generally results in remission from AS and symptoms, but is not a “cure” for the disease, since once we have antibodies to klebsiella, they are always able to attack the B27 gene.  It’s a matter of encouraging the immune system to register that there is no threat from klebsiella at this time, to minimise antibody activity.

When I started eating a no-starch, low-lactose diet, and the difference was remarkable.  All sorts of weird pains and symptoms disappeared instantly (e.g. I’d twisted my ankle some time before, and had pain in my foot for months – this resolved itself immediately when I changed my diet).  At first the changes were very difficult, and I found it hard to feel satisfied after a meal.  Now I accept that without grains and starches to fill me up, I don’t get that really “full” feeling after a meal, but my food DOES give me the energy I need to carry me through to the next meal.

A bit more about AS

Thanks to a suggestion by someone who commented on my blog, I bought and read Micah Cranman’s book / DVD package.  I would recommend this resource to anyone with AS, though I wouldn’t go as far as to say that my AS is in remission as a result of his book.  My AS is not in remission at all, it is simply managed through drinking vinegar.  The diet is the same as the one I’ve already described here on my blog (for free) – starch free.  Micah does go into a bit more detail about a few ingredients which I was previously unable to find out whether they were starchy or not.  I found that helpful.

He also advises that a first step towards improving your AS is to take fish oil – he recommends krill oil.  I went out and bought some and started taking it, but had no improvement at all as a result.  But then I realised that I already take cod liver oil every morning, and probably this fulfills the same function.  So I’ve probably already got the benefit that can be had from fish oils.  But a note to those of you out there with AS, experiment with fish oils.

I’d love to hear from you.

Since I started telling people about AS, I’ve discovered almost everyone seems to know someone who suffers from the weird problems of joint pain, digestive troubles and skin troubles.  Or they know someone who has already been diagnosed with AS.  Since rheumatologists here in Australia don’t seem to know about Ebringer’s research, feel free to spread the word and let people with AS know about this article.  Ebringer has started a forum for people to share their progress and diet tips, and it’s a great place to start.  Carol Sinclair’s book is another good starting point.

If you have AS or know someone who does, please leave a comment to share your story. I sometimes get people asking me to give guidance or help them with their condition. Sorry, but I’m not a doctor and can’t do that. The purpose of my blog is to give you information so that you can use it to help yourself.

240 thoughts on “Natural treatment for ankylosing spondylitis and inflammatory arthritis

  1. John Hansard

    Fascinating blog – I’m reading it at 4am because I couldn’t sleep for the pain of my AS.!! I have tried ACV before for other conditions but after reading your blog I’m def going out to buy some tomorrow! !
    I’ve had AS for many years and have had many treatments to try to alleviate the pain. I was diagnosed late (early 40s) and the initial attack was devastating – the worst pain I had ever experienced. After lots of trial and error I discovered Qigong (Chi- kung) which dramatically reduced my symptoms! ! after a few years I gave up Qigong for other forms of exercise which seemed to keep it at bay.. For the last 10 years my preferred form of exercise has been dancing as it’s so much more fun than anything else. However I think I have neglected the dietary issues and in the last few weeks I’ve had a bad flare-up of the AS so I intend to cut down on starch ( difficult as I have a sweet tooth) !! I think the worst thing about this flare up is that waking up in the early hours with searing pain across the base of my spine !! However, having read you blog I have renewed determination to act now to reduce my symptoms by whatever means I can. Thanks again for the mass of useful information.

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  2. Rima

    I hope you have time to answer my question, Can you eat millets, buckwheat, Amaranth, chia, flax seeds, raisins or sunflower seeds?

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  3. Dave VanWagoner

    When my rhumetolgust called me and his diagnosis was as and he told me that there was nothing that I could do and he said it would just get worse with time and I was going to suffer with pain that would only get worse it blew my mind. Unfortunately he was correct and it has worsened. I have three young boys and I’m a single parent and trying to stay active with them has been a huge challenge and Very heart breaking at times. I’m open to trying anything at this point the doctors don’t seem to have much information about it other than it gets worse and I was told you just suffer from pain something no one wants to ever hear. So you I can definitely say I’m open to any advice. My boys I no Would love to see there active dad back and smiling. Thank You. Dave VanWagoner

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    1. Carol

      The main thing is to keep up the exercise as much as you can, low starch diet, low inflammation foods. the night shade veg can for some be issues. pro biotics are good to take as they help with bacteria, food enzymes help break down the food so the digestive system can process it easier. Our body has food enzymes but often are low when one has Auto immune, Also a good multi vitamin that addresses inflammation. Message me if you would like more information.

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  4. nickiofcourse

    We are just starting on this path. My 13 year old has had joint pain since he was 8. Yours was the first helpful thing I’ve read. He’s so active. He’s really nervous about the future. Thank you for this!!

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  5. nickiofcourse

    The more I read this, as well as your whole blog, the more I want to do a Scooby Doo to you! (Which is pounce and give a big ole smooch). I am really grateful. For a month now I have been reading such awful medical reports full of doom and gloom. Now that I’m armed with your blog, the fb group and a couple of great books with doable recipes (4 kids), I feel much, much more hopeful. THANK YOU!

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  6. Savi

    Thank you for this. I have been told that my joints a degenerated and the dr has suggested it’s AS although I have become negative on the b27 protein. Have had inflammation for 20years and even after going to GP’s no one suggested that I should get my self checked through a rheumy.. But I am determined to fight this and believe in divine intervention for this condition.

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  7. Tanya Gilmore

    How much water needs to be on top of the vinegar? You said to put 1-2 tbsp of vinegar and top it with water. Does it have to be an entire tall glass of water or a small glass?

    How do I kill the klebsiella? Does the vinegar do that?

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    1. Carol

      Kiebsiella thrives on starch, so no starch, and keep down the inflammation. Alot of Veg have starch and alot of products have starch. Bone broth is also great for healing the gut as alot of Autoimmune conditions like AS come from a unhealthy gut. You can message me if you would like more information on this. Food enzynes are often helpful, people with Autoimmune conditions often lack digestive enzynes, as they help break down the food so that the digestive system does not work as hard and help to not have undigested food hanging around. to create bad bacteria. Probiotics are very helpful too. Helps to fight unwanted bad bacteria, and create better flora in the gut. .

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  8. raghavendra char

    Hi,
    Thank you for providing very useful info here. I am 60 years. have been diagnosed AS with HLB 27+ about 15 years back. . Because of pains were not coming down and my ESR was very very high, I shifted and used NSAID for about 5 years which caused much excitement in my actions, I shifted to Ayurveda. and used medicines for more than10 years but for the reasons not known my spine started shaping “bamboo” shape and my weight has also come down drastically. I met Rheumatologists and Orthopaedics who prescribed pain killers which I did not like. I shifted using Homeopath and it is giving relief with no side affects but to some extent pains are worrying. At this moment I made search and found about ACV in earth clinic and started using ACV in 2016 which started giving much relief but for the reasons not known ACV caused acid reflux due to which phlegm used to accumulate in my throat and I immediately stopped using ACV in November 2016. This acid reflux vanished. Again I started using ACV now but the same reaction is appearing. I am worrying. Can anyone tell me why acid reflux is foming and what is the correct way of using ACV. Is there any other natural remedy? I am purely veggy.

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  9. Rudra rajendra parekh

    I was also attack by AS …
    I also started drinking Apple cider vinegar.
    One table spoon of turmeric powder
    Add two tea spoon of honey
    Two table spoon of Apple cider vinegar
    Add 250 no of warm water..
    Drink it on empty stomach early morning..
    It taste delicious and reduce inflammation

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    1. Asphyxia Post author

      When I travel I bring with me a 1 litre water bottle, 500ml of vinegar, a tablespoon measure and a small bottle of stevia. I buy more vinegar at my destination if need. I don’t follow the starch free diet any more so this is no longer an issue when travelling. Before I use to pack all food for me to eat while in transit and bring it with me, and I made sure to stay somewhere I would have cooking facilities so I could make my own food when I arrived.

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  10. Kaisa Howard

    Thank you for the amazing information, I have been to the doctors, tested, xrayed etc. And have now got results still need to go to specialist but they are all saying it is AS. The pain is some days crippling and very frustrating so am looking for information how to manage the bad days. So thank you very much for the information and it gives me a better understanding and what might ease the pain. Regards Kaisa Howard.

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  11. Anne Southwell

    Hi
    Just been diagnosed by specialist with AS, at age 61. Positive to B27 with joint issues mainly in feet and hands. Just beginning the journey and have found the information here to be sensible and practical.
    I came for the AS information and then have delighted in the art making, sustainability and the beautiful writing.
    I would like to clarify the live culture vinegar quantities. One tablespoon is 15ml. Is it 4 tablespoons a day or is it 2 tablespoons 4x a day.
    Thank you

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  12. npoise

    As someone mentioned about using Essential Oils as alternative, I would like to share my blog on EOs npoise.wordpress.com/category/eos/

    Don’t get me wrong, I am not trying to sell or treat, just sharing what I am using for myself. This blog is newly created (so it is quite bare), hoping to create greater awareness about AS in my country.

    I am HLAB27+, however there isn’t any fusion detected except bulging cervical disc, most time I had aching in the past 4 months (neck, shoulder, ribs) which required bed rest every 2-3 hours and an acute pain once, so my rheumatologist categorized me as an atypical case and prescribed NSAID. I was lucky to stumbled upon Arlene’s blog https://arlinspires.wordpress.com/category/healing/ which posted on a TMS support group (is in her blog), she was kind to point out the negative effect of NSAID long term (my liver was detected with lesion, it was a wake up call for me) and subsequently this blog. I stopped NSAID in mid May 2017.
    Very thankful to both lovely gals!

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  13. Pingback: Resources for AS – npoise

  14. Mor

    Hi, I would like to know if there any option to disappear the klebsiella? As I understand, this bacteria get into your body’s and you can never get a ways from her, this is correct??
    I have AS , negative for b27, SRP and all the other blood tests very normal.
    But I suffere a lot of pain in my SIJ , also the MRI showed very bad pic..
    So I wonder.. I don’t want to take biologically treatment..and we really want to get pregnant..
    So the vinegar can help? It can use in pregnant??
    I think I get my AS after using 4 months antibiotics for streptococcus.
    I took pro bayotic and I have heard about treatment in pro bayotic..VSL 3 , did you know this? Thank you for any information, and sorry for my English..

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  15. Cathy Bartlett

    Hello there. I am a 51 year old female from the UK and have severe Ankylosing spondylitis, Osteoarthritis and Psoriatic Arthritis. I am B27 positive and as I was diagnosed very late in life my spine and neck are totally fused, as are my ribs. I have fractured my spine and right rib cage by a simple fall and I have Bamboo Spine. Nearly every joint in my body is affected by one of my conditions and I have constant areas of psoriasis which are very visible as they present on my face, neck and hands. I have been on Embrel, Humira and now I have been changed to Cosentyx injections as nothing so far has helped. This treatment together with a whole host of strong medication for depression and pain is the reason I am reading your page today as I am searching for a possible alternative to the ‘treatment’ that the NHS has decided is the best for me. I have come to question whether pumping my already struggling body and immune system with chemicals that lower the natural response makes sense or is making any difference so what if I just stopped? If I am still declining and have developed Osteoarthritis and Psoriatic Arthritis since being treated for AS then the treatment isn’t working I have to assume. What if I let my body take care of itself as it did when I had my two children? When you are pregnant your body is doing everything without any need for you to do other that what it tells you so could my body do the same and cope with my problems? What have I got to lose by putting faith in a natural method giving back control to my body? It managed to give me two beautiful children on its own so maybe it knows how to look after itself more than I am giving it credit for. When did it become preferable to add multiple chemicals manufactured in a laboratory to change the chemistry of the body that is already struggling with multiple chemical imbalances that the B27 gene causes? I am at the end of my tether and I have to have a go and I am going to start with your vinegar drink . Thank you for sharing your story, I am so pleased I found it and will update my post with how I am getting on. Any feedback or experience of what I am considering doing would be so welcome and good health to everyone. Cathy

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  16. Miriem Momtaz

    Thank you so much for posting this. I have had severe skin inflammation issues (about 20 keloids on my shoulders) and no one knows how to help not even the top dermatologists in my city (Montreal). I have also had chronic pain in my lower spine and right side that radiates down through the buttocks and up under the ribcage for about 6 years now and doctors say it’s just muscular pain and prescribe anti inflammatories. I often wake up with crippling pain in my lower back and ribcage and it’s recently gotten much worse. I feel like my esophagus is inflamed like a constant gagging feeling … I recently began birth control pills (Tricyclen) and for the aweful effects on my mood antidepressants (Effexor). I decided to stop because of all the side effects but the pain is unbearable and I worry if I will end up like my mother who is in so much pain in her hip she can hardly walk, even after surgery and cortizone injections and strong pain killers. The more I read about this disease the more I see red flags, my mother’s advanced stage of it and my 8 year old daughter who often complains of pain in her knees at night and achilles tendon in the morning. No one has answers EVER for this. Now I feel I may have found what it is and I am hoping to be persistent with the diluted apple cidre vinegar internally. Maybe lemon water can also help if alkalizing the body is the cure. Thank you for sharing your experience and information because it is so hard to find answers. Thank you so much for taking the time to research it and help others! ❤

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  17. carol

    Have you though about trying essential oils for your skin,(lavender, tea tree, and a few more. A certain combination of oils for inflammation. The oils travel through the pathways from the Spine into the inflammatory areas of your body. The oils being natural your body accepts them and utilizes them into the cells which inflammation is reduced. l. You need to use pure therapeutic grade essential oils like the Doterra Brand. I My son used them once a week on his spine for a month or two. Massaged in. Then once a month. They can be very powerful along with a anti inflammatory Vitamin , which are oils, minerals, and essential oils including the omegas (Doterra) and no starch diet. He went from hardly walking to doing a whole lot better after a couple of months. He was first told AS as he had the gene and symptoms but later was told Reactive Arthritis due to the C-diff which is the bacteria related to AS. Not sure how much you know on gut health, but is huge in inflammation and auto immune conditions. I hear your pain in your post. if you would like more info on this I can do so. Just wanted to put it out there as it was so helpful to my Son of 27.

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  18. Five

    I’m happy i found this nice blog. Just one question, after 1 year on 4 spoons of ACV daily did you check your stomach? It wasn’t affected bu ACV? Please let me know!

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  19. Janice Tollis (@TollisJanice)

    I have been dealing with rheumatoid arthritis for my whole life, it started about in my early 30s back in the 90s. I would have my hand swell up to big red balloons around my knuckles and I wouldn’t be able to move the hands at all. What I did notice that helped relieve the pain, but not the swelling was Absorbine Jr. The arthritis cream made it easier with the stiffness and the pain when I had the worst conditions. The swelling and the movement were still bad though and sometimes that made it hard to do the easiest of tasks around the house. The thing I noticed at first and the early signs were pain and the swelling. The swelling where my knuckles would get red where the first indications that I had rheumatoid arthritis I searched for alternative treatments and started on rheumatoid arthritis herbal formula i ordered from Health Herbal Clinic, my symptoms totally declined over a 5 weeks use of the rheumatoid arthritis disease natural herbal formula.i read reviews from other previous patients who used the herbal formula,i am now active, i can now go about daily exercise!! Visit there website www. healthherbalclinic. net or email Info@ healthherbalclinic. net herbs are truly gift from God.

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  20. Simone

    Hi! Great article! How do I get tested for klebsiella?
    I have AS. Have heard about oil of oregano. Do you take this?
    I eat paleo and have apple cider vinegar twice daily, have a stubborn Achilles that don’t go down at the moment.

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  21. Asphyxia Post author

    Hi Simone, I looked into Oregano Oil and understood it can be quite toxic so best to proceed with caution. I decided not to try taking it myself. I don’t know that it’s easy to get tested for klebsiella as most pathologists don’t test for it. I think it’s only routinely tested for in hospitals.

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  22. Susan

    Hello. I’m not sure this blog is still active, but I thought I’d try my luck. My name is Susan, Australian, has been suffering from AS for few years now, haven’t understood AS and haven’t known there is a hope to reduce my pain until I read your article. For this I can’t thank you enough. I have been on the diet for 3 weeks now, but the change in my pain is so slow. I’m not sure if I’m doing things right. Unfortunately, no one in Australia has heard of this diet. So, I’m on my own. Anyways, thank you again and best regards, Susan

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    1. Jennifer

      Susan – There is an amazing woman in Australia that I follow. She too has AS and has had great experience with the Low Starch/No Starch Diet – and has a very positive and inspiring blog.https://l.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.livingwellwithas.com%2F&h=ATPjlnXL74dWIVtXjKNDgoZhQRK1Zs-N5r9Q9o5s_Ih8hLCHBByvfoD59gHy-_EvLDYOTAZEbKaGeS9rnt-UA18qbtfRa4UHDAgmAZT4Tf_fPH63UW1oxcImK802WMCsc_JM2OzZUB-BJtf_WHNaLlLFrwtk1yBx5iGew6hFuA27J31n8ElURnAzdJ5aAAtpIBsphneF4jx6PbTOElCsXD59DQ8Oq6qByQ-B0SBIHCy6avnGDOAV9ZVqrA1bM1CM7AvkhDhsHeFiWIYxtUSsOIiizRBw-YfXyNfKIuoWFchvr8BtDA
      Not sure if this link will work – but on Facebook you can find her on Living Well with Ankylosing Spondylitis. Her name is Anne-Marie Raymond. She will inspire and lift you up! Best of Luck.

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    2. Virginia Dearnley

      Stay with it! It took me a long time to notice the pain subsiding I also needed to go on a low to no starch diet which made a huge difference. But finding this blog and all the comments has been a huge blessing to me! Take the time and go through and read what others have written to see if any of that may help you.

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  23. Ana A

    Hello! Thank you very much for sharing this! I have also been diagnosed with AS and just went and bought a bottle of raw apple cider vinegar 🙂 I am already on the starch free diet for a while, but I find it very hard to keep and see no great benefits so far. Will definitely use some of your helpful comments on it. I would like a clarification, as to the quantity of apple cider vinegar used per day. You mention in one of your posts 1tablespoon is equivalent to 15 ml of liquid. I am not sure I understand it right because from what I know a table spoon contains much less. To better understand this, how many days does a 500ml vinegar bottle last for you? Thanks in advance.

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  24. Gabrielle

    Thank you for this. My young teen daughter is being investigated and I want to be able to hit the ground running with dietary changes if the Dr says she does in fact have AS.

    I appreciate your telling your story.

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  25. Dr. M. ELUMALAI

    hi Asphyxia, this is Elu from India, my 23 year sister suffering by this spondyloarthritis, now i am going to utilise your natural treatment method, i have believe this will work as better, finally, i am very grateful to your valuable information. thank you.

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  26. Kamelia Callender

    Thank you so much for posting this information. I was diagnosed last week with spondylitis. It was my eye doctor who referred me to rheumatologist after she dx my painful red eye with scleritis. Apparently majority of patients with scleritis have some type of autoimmune disease. I now have other symtoms. She prescribed me Sulfasalzine which I’m terrified to take because I was fairly healthy before this and I’ve read some horror stories about it at the same time I’m scared of any progression of this illness. As a nurse I’ve also visited patients who have rheumatoid arthritis who refused to take immune modulators and just do their own thing and now wheelchair bound. This is my fear. Did you ever try Sulfasalzine? Did you just stick to the natural route? I’m so conflicted. I am seeing a holistic doctor as well who prescribed me an amino enzyme blend that he feels will reduce inflammation in my body. If i feel improvement i will let you know. I grateful that you shared your experience.
    Kamelia

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  27. Asphyxia Post author

    Hi Kamelia, I didn’t try sulphasalzine… I decided to try the natural route first and then go with heavy drugs if it didn’t work. As it is, I manage my symptoms effectively with vinegar and the disease is not progressing. Do let us know if the amino enzyme blend helps.. I have tried a lot of conventional things that reduce inflammation, like turmeric, to no avail. The vinegar has been the most effective way to reduce it for me. Asphyxia

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  28. Onna Addis

    Wow. If I hadn’t read my xray results myself …I would just be in terrible pain and not know why. It says I have grade 1 spondiolithesis in my spine L3-s1. With degenerative disc disease and through my hip joints. Funny. My Dr. Said there is nothing wrong with me . pain management knows what I’m going through. I was diagnosed with some in 1992. In 1993 rare klebsiella nearly killed me.
    I’ve been saying I’m allergic to corn. Everytime I eat. Even a corn muffin I get deathly painfully sick. It effects my ilium.and swells my colon terribly right hip inside the top illium. Sorry if my spelling is wrong. I’m new to finding out on my own. I listen to what my body is telling me. Um, I crave vinegar all the time.
    A friend of mine SENT me this link.. How she knew? I dont remember telling her. Maybe I did. And she put the symptoms together.
    I am set up for more spinal epidurals to relieve the 24/7 pain. Tomorrow. I will read more about this diet. So much to learn. Why is my M.D. ignoring the diagnosis after reading it and signing off on it?
    I need a good .Dr… I’m really scared reading this. I feel 63 And all alone…and totally dismissed.

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    1. carol faye skinner

      Hi there also Pure essential oils have ;major anti inflammatory properties, they were a God sent to my Son when he first has his flare up of inflammation in the hip. Was tested for AS and after about two months they retested and decided it was Reactive Arthritis as he had had a bacteria Kiebesiella from taking anti biotics, his immune was down. No signs of the Kiebesiella, but doing the protocol for infectious disease / anti inflammatory and taking the anti bio tics for three days, the hospital said it was gone. Essential oils enhance the job of the anti bio tics.

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