How Are Gin-Soaked Raisins Used to Alleviate Arthritis Pain?


Quick Answer

A folk remedy claims that eating nine gin-soaked golden raisins every day alleviates arthritis pain, says About.com. However, there are currently no controlled, double-blind academic studies that confirm the truth of this claim.

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The gin-soaked raisin arthritis remedy was introduced to popular culture via Paul Harvey's radio broadcast in the 1990s, notes About.com. The most common version of the remedy calls specifically for golden or white raisins. The patient must place the raisins in a shallow dish, cover them in gin, and soak them for several weeks, or until the gin dissolves. Eating nine of these raisins each day purportedly eases arthritis pain.

Despite the lack of evidence, there are some theories as to why the raisin treatment might work, says About.com. Some hypothesize that the sulfur used to prevent grapes from browning, thus producing golden raisins, is responsible for the pain relief. Others believe that the vitamin C-rich juniper berries used in gin production provide the effect. Still others suggest that it is simply the anti-inflammatory properties of raisins and grapes that lend value to the remedy. Many people also suspect that gin-soaked raisins are a placebo and that the pain relief is due either to the patient's belief that the remedy works, or to the arthritis naturally entering a phase of remission.

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