Posted on: June 7, 2018 at 3:44 pm
Last updated: June 19, 2018 at 10:05 am

I’ll be the first to admit that there are some strange natural remedies out there. Whether it be coconut oil under-eye cream or healing turmeric body scrub, it can sometimes be hard to recognize the good remedy from the bad. That’s why it’s always encouraging to see that research is being done to scientifically prove the effectiveness of home remedies. The following cabbage leaf wrap has been tested and proven for joint pain relief so you can feel confident knowing that you’re using your time and energy on a remedy that will actually work.

Cabbage Leaf Wrap for Joint Pain Relief

joint pain relief

Cabbage is known to have many healing properties and you can harness those properties in ways other than eating it. Applying cabbage to a place on the body that is experiencing joint pain has been proven by researchers to significantly reduce aches and pains.

An added bonus is that it’s easy to do!

What You’ll Need:

  • Red Cabbage
  • Gauze
  • Aluminum Foil
  • Rolling Pin
  • Oven


  1. Take the top layer of cabbage off and wash it well with water
  2. Use a rolling pin on the cabbage leaf to let the juice out, and wrap the leaf in aluminum foil
  3. Warm up the cabbage in the oven, then apply it to the area that is in pain and secure it in place with gauze
  4. Keep the cabbage in place for at least an hour
  5. Repeat the process 2-3 times per day for best results[1]

NOTES: If you would prefer a cold compress, place the cabbage in the fridge for 1 hour

Cabbage Has Been Proven to Help With Osteoporosis

You may be wondering, “how does placing cabbage on my bad knee get rid of my pain?”. The answer to that is in the healing power of cabbage.

In one very impactful study, patients with osteoporosis of the knee (stage 2 and 3) were randomly assigned to 4 weeks of treatment with either cabbage leaf wraps, topical pain gel, or their usual care. The study was measured by how much pain intensity the patients felt at the end of the 4 weeks, and the study showed that those in the cabbage leaf wrap group experienced less pain[2].

So what makes cabbage so special?

It’s Anti-Inflammatory

Cruciferous vegetables like cabbage contain antioxidants that have been shown to reduce chronic inflammation[3]. This is due to antioxidants like Sulforaphane and kaempferol that are abundant in cabbage[4][5].

In one study of over 1,000 Chinese women showed that those eating more cruciferous vegetables had considerably lower levels of inflammation than those who ate less[8].

Not only is cabbage used for its anti-inflammatory properties, but it also is filled with vitamins and nutrients that will contribute to overall better health and wellness.

It’s High in Vitamins

Cabbage is very low in calories, but that doesn’t mean that it’s without vitamins and nutrients. Even a small amount of cabbage can give you an extra nutritional boost in your day.

Just one cup of cabbage (89 grams) contains the following[6]:

  • Calories: 22
  • Protein: 1 gram
  • Fiber: 2 grams
  • Vitamin K: 85% of the RDI
  • Vitamin C: 54% of the RDI
  • Folate: 10% of the RDI
  • Manganese: 7% of the RDI
  • Vitamin B6: 6% of the RDI
  • Calcium: 4% of the RDI
  • Potassium: 4% of the RDI
  • Magnesium: 3% of the RD

Cabbage is a good source of vitamin k, which is important for our bodies to function properly. Vitamin k works as a cofactor for enzymes that are responsible for clotting the blood[7]. Without it, the blood would have a difficult time clotting and we’d be at risk of excess bleeding.

Whether you ingest it or wrap your painful joints in it, making use of cabbage leaves for joint pain relief could be the secret antidote that you’ve been missing.


Experiencing stiffness and aches can definitely be a pain, but it’s not the end of the world. Finding a routine that works for you, and implementing it into your day-to-day activities will help you to feel less stiff, and give you your desired joint pain relief. If you have continual pain that doesn’t seem to be going away, you may, in fact, have osteoporosis or rheumatoid arthritis. You can read more about these conditions here and here. If you believe that this is the case for you, speak with your doctor to create a consistent treatment plan.

[1] Alternative Health Universe. Wrap Your Leg With Cabbage Leaves in Order to Relieve Joint Pain. (Feb. 14, 2018).

[2] Lauche R1, Gräf N, Cramer H, Al-Abtah J, Dobos G, Saha FJ. Efficacy of Cabbage Leaf Wraps in the Treatment of Symptomatic Osteoarthritis of the Knee: A Randomized Controlled Trial. (Nov. 2016).

[3] Herbert Tilg. Cruciferous vegetables: prototypic anti-inflammatory food components. (Nov. 9, 2015).


[4] Andrew Durham, Elen Jazrawi, Jo Ann Rhodes, Cara Williams, Ian Kilty, Peter Barnes, K. Fan Chung, Ian Adcock. The anti-inflammatory effects of sulforaphane are not mediated by the Nrf2 pathway. (2014).

[5] Rajendran P, Rengarajan T, Nandakumar N, Palaniswami R, Nishigaki Y, Nishigaki I. Kaempferol, a potential cytostatic and cure for inflammatory disorders. (Oct. 30, 2014).


[7] National Institutes of Health. Vitamin K.

[8] Yu Jiang, MD, MPH, Sheng-Hui Wu, MD, PhD, Xiao-Ou Shu, MD, PhD, Yong-Bing Xiang, MD, MPH, Bu-Tian Ji, MD, PhD, Ginger L. Milne, PhD, Qiuyin Cai, MD, PhD, Xianglan Zhang, MD, MPH, Yu-Tang Gao, MD, Wei Zheng, MD, PhD, Gong Yang, MD, MPH. Cruciferous Vegetable Intake Is Inversely Correlated with Circulating Levels of Proinflammatory Markers in Women. (May 2014).


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