Rheumatoid arthritis (RHA) is one of the most prevalent complex, chronic, inflammatory diseases, manifested by elevated oxidative stress and inflammatory biomarkers. Prolonged administration of NSAIDs, steroids, and DMARDs, used in the treatment of RHA, is associated with deleterious side effects. This necessitates the urge of new and safe approaches for RHA management, based on the complementary and alternative system of medicine. Documented evidences have suggested that supplementation with nutritional, dietary, and herbal components; can play a crucial role as an adjuvant, in the alleviation of the RHA symptoms, through their influence on the pathological inflammatory processes. Dietary phenolic compounds, flavonoids, carotenoids, and alkaloids with their ability to modulate prooxidant and pro‐inflammatory pathways, have been effective in delaying the arthritic disease progression. Moreover, in scientific explorations, herbs containing phenolic compounds, alkaloids, carotenoids flavonoids, spices such as ginger, turmeric, Ayurvedic formulations, different diets such as Mediterranean diet, vegan diet, beverages, and oils such as sesame oil, rice bran oil, vitamins, and probiotics are proven to modulate the action of inflammatory molecules, involved in RHA pathology. Subsequently, the purpose of this review article is to summarize various in vitro, in vivo, and clinical studies in RHA, which have documented remarkable insights into the anti‐inflammatory, antioxidant, analgesic, and immunomodulatory, bone erosion preventing properties of dietary, nutritional, and herbal components with the focus on their molecular level mechanisms involved in RHA. Even though major findings were derived from in vitro studies, several in vivo and clinical studies have established the use of diet, herbal, and nutritional management in RHA treatment.
Thickening of the synovial membrane, bone erosion, and cartilage destruction is known to trigger rheumatoid arthritis causing inflammation and pain in bone joints. Continuous intake of NSAIDs, steroids, and DMARD therapy are associated with detrimental side effects. These side effects can be overcome by the use of dietary, nutritional, and herbal interventions based on the complementary and alternative therapy. This concept portrays the food components and other natural components having the potential to promote health, improve general well‐being, and reduce the risk of RHA.