Q. I have had success using fresh pineapple peel on a plantar wart. I applied the pineapple skin to the wart overnight, with the fleshy fruit side toward the foot. I saved the peel in a plastic bag in the fridge so I could reapply it several nights in a row.
I found it easier to keep the pineapple skin in place with a callus cushion. I centered the plantar wart in the hole, fit the pineapple into that and covered it with a bandage. An added benefit: The fresh pineapple is delish!
A. This is the first time we have read that pineapple might be beneficial. An ingredient in pineapple, bromelain, has both anti-inflammatory and immune-modulating effects, so there is a plausible mechanism of action.
Some people tell us that pineapple is good for joint pain, as this reader did: “I read on your website about pineapple for arthritis, and it has certainly helped me. I eat a slice of fresh pineapple daily. Without the pineapple, I wake each day feeling every joint in my hands has been broken.”
Anyone who would like to learn more about pineapple, bromelain and other anti-inflammatory food and spices may find our book “Quick and Handy Home Remedies” of value. It is available online at www.PeoplesPharmacy.com.
Q. I was looking for information about fire-ant stings and arthritis, because this just happened to me. I live in Florida, and two days ago I got about 30 fire-ant stings on my foot.
I used baking soda and vinegar on the foot, so the pain and itching wasn’t too bad. My toes became swollen and tight to the point that I couldn’t bend them, but the swelling went away overnight.
In the past, including very recently, I have had incredible pain from arthritis in this foot. Today, my foot feels great, with no pain at all. I just can’t believe the range of motion I have. All of the joints in the foot are so loose and flexible.
I’m 50, and my foot feels like it did when I was in my 20s. As crazy as this may sound, I’m getting ready to go out and put my hands on one of the several fire-ant nests in my yard.
A. We would discourage you from sticking your hand in a fire-ant nest on the grounds that bites can become infected.
That said, there is an unusual approach to treating arthritis and some autoimmune conditions called apitherapy, or bee-venom therapy. Controlled bee stings may provide significant pain relief for sore joints.
We interviewed several experts on apitherapy and acupuncture for our radio show. You can listen to the one-hour episode at www.PeoplesPharmacy.com.