Natural Cures for Bunions

| Modified on Aug 15, 2022
Posted by Jennysmom2 (Idaho, US) on 07/22/2015

I just want to say that ginger has almost completely gotten rid of the pain and inflammation I have from a bunion and general stiffness I have.

Of course you need to take it regularly, or the pain etc. comes back. I am on the go and work out of town, so a great solution for me is to keep candied ginger with me. (Not ginger candy) I eat a couple of pieces a couple of times a day. Some people may be concerned with sugar content, but this is good on the go solution for me.

Lugol's Iodine
Posted by jac (East Coast USA) on 04/07/2021

I'm looking forward to trying your remedy, but wondering if there's any advantage of using Lugol's with DMSO (gel on order) as opposed to Povidone iodine?
Thanks much for your info!

Posted by Jac (East Coast USA) on 04/06/2021

Have your employers no compassion? You must wear something more humane to work in or you'll suffer more and more as time goes on.

It's time to reassess priorities if this is what it comes to. Also, tell your husband exactly how important this is. If he truly loves you, he won't allow you to suffer. -What price fashion?

Vitamin A
Posted by Joyce (Joelton, Tn) on 12/28/2009 495 posts

Been browsing some old newsletters of Jonathan Wright's and came across this and started wondering if calloused heels and cracked heels might not have the same basic problem. Some of EC'ers might like to try this & see if it could get rid of them.

Subject: callouses on heels (wonder what this would do with the cracked heels?)


Get rid of calluses for good

Q: I've had very thick heel calluses for most of my adult life. I've tried everything from lotions to scraping to soaking and nothing seems to work. Is there anything that will help?

Dr. Wright: In the 1970s, I read a book about nutrition and general medicine written by a Yale professor. In that book, he observed that heavy heel calluses were a sign of long- term vitamin A deficiency. He recommended vitamin A supplementation for individuals with this problem.

Since that time, I have recommended the same treatment for my patients and have found it quite reliable, although in many cases it takes three to four months to begin to see results, and complete disappearance of the calluses can take eight months or more.

For adults, the dose is 75,000 units of vitamin A per day until the calluses are gone. Then you can decrease your dose to a "maintenance amount" of 15,000 to 25,000 units per day. (If the calluses return, the quantity can be increased once more.) In over 20 years, I've never observed any adverse effects with this treatment.

Avoid Wheat
Posted by Pip (New Zealand) on 11/29/2019

I had trouble with inflamed bunions for years, then I stopped eating wheat. Inflammation stopped and bunions are gone..Big hard lumps are gone! Good if you can catch it early of course. Good health to all!

Castor Oil
Posted by PB (North Carolina) on 03/09/2019

I have a bunion that I suspected had arthritic fluid in it and was very painful. The pain would get worse days before it rained. There were days and weeks that I had to walk with a cane because the pain was so intense. My foot would swell up. I soaked my foot in Epsom salts and pink Himalayan salts but that didn't give me much relief. I even tried soaking my feet in oregano oil, that didn't help.

Finally I thought I would try my first ever castor oil pack on my bunion for an hour. It felt like the fluid was decreasing so I used a castor oil pack on my foot for the next four nights in a row for an hour. By the second night most of the pain was gone. I can't predict when the rain is coming now because I no longer feel pain in my foot days before it rains. It feels like 99 percent of the fluid is out of my foot now. I think I will try the castor oil pack on my TMJ and over my sinus areas next to see what happens.

Bentonite Clay
Posted by Jen (Longview) on 03/10/2018


Bentonite clay food grade all the way. Use this topically and with help of tea made of bay leaves to drink cured it fast.

Lugol's Iodine
Posted by Bill (San Fernando, Philippines) on 11/19/2015

Hi Stephanie...Yes, you should use a skin scraper - which is a bit like a miniature potato grater -- constantly to get rid of the dead skin and pathogens in the bunion region. Then use a rub stick -- a bit like fine grained sandpaper -- as you get nearer the new skin. Try scraping or rubbing like this gently once or twice a week as well as using the DMSO an iodine. You'll know when to stop scraping when you hit new skin -- that will cause a bit of pain, so be gentle with yourself.

When I got rid of my own pronounced bunions, I remember that I was constantly rubbing or scraping them down every week. And after you have rubbed down or scraped the bunion area, always lean and disinfect afterwards with the dmso and iodine. That means that there will be no escape for any annoying pathogens in that area...

Lugol's Iodine
Posted by Stephanie (California) on 11/18/2015

Hi Bill,

I did exactly what you said, DMSO and Iodine. The thick skin over my bunion has hardened and turned white. Did that happen with you? Do you recommend scrubbing it all off and reapplying or does the white dead skin eventually fall off?


Coconut Oil
Posted by Brian (Sth Aus) on 11/09/2015

Ashley, mine was a self diagnosis - not a medical one, of a Tailor's Bunion (aka Bunionette) - a lump at the outside base of my small toe, and definitely not a callus nor a corn. I had been wearing 'barefoot shoes' for years, no big toe rotation nor structural cramping at all possible. The Coconut Oil massages I gave it at worst cost 3 cents and 3 minutes of my time, and it has never reappeared in the 2 years since. I won't guarantee it will work for anybody else but is worth a go. Perhaps the longer the condition, the longer the treatment time.

Coconut Oil
Posted by Ashley (Trinidad) on 11/07/2015

May I ask what type of bunion you were diagnosed with? I want to see if the oil massage would be worth a try. Is yours due to a structural change meaning your big toe was starting to rotate towards the next toe?

Lugol's Iodine
Posted by Bill (San Fernando, Philippines) on 08/03/2015

Hi...Earthling2015...Just apply the mixture to your bunion once a day. When I used the remedy, I applied the dmso/lugols iodine mix to the whole foot(for both feet) -- apply to bunions, sides, soles and back of the foot as well. Nothing fancy but just make sure to wipe over the whole area. Do this once a day. Also be advised to let the mix soak into the foot and dry off before putting on socks and shoes as iodine can stain.

Whenever I used this ready, I always used it directly after my shower at night -- just before bed. I just made sure it was dry and went to straight to bed. This way, there were no staining problems at all because I wasn't wearing socks or shoes.

Lugol's Iodine
Posted by Earthling2015 (Mn) on 08/02/2015

Hi Bill,

Thank you for this information!

I have a question for you. Do you keep the mixture on the area for a long time every day, or it simply wipe with cotton ball or cloth once a day?

Lugol's Iodine
Posted by Catherine (Fort Lauderdale) on 06/05/2015

Bunions are bony formations under the skin, grown on metatarsophalangeal joint of a big toe. They have nothing to do with callouses. I have bunions, and my skin is perfectly normal above those bunions. My cousin suggested using iodine solution daily on top of bunions daily, and its seems to somewhat reduce those bunions.


Posted by Tina (Kirkland, Wa) on 03/27/2015

Yeah, I'd ditch the shoes in a heartbeat! Find some comfortable shoes in a wide width... and go barefoot at home whenever possible. Earth Shoes or Aerosoles are good options for fashionable comfy shoes. I actually have some very comfy Naturalizers that get compliments often - and I've stood for hours and walked for miles in those without a complaint.

Lugol's Iodine
Posted by Jane (Uk) on 11/05/2014

Hi Bill - Thank you so much for all your help and advice regarding this. I really appreciate your time and trouble.

Lugol's Iodine
Posted by Bill (San Fernando, Philippines) on 11/04/2014

Hi Jane...I can't really tell you exactly how long it took too cure my bunions. After I shaved the dead skin off my bunions and other areas down to bare skin, I think that I only used the recommended protocol for just over a month. That was at least 3 years ago as I recall.

Since that time, my bunions have never returned and the skin around the perimeters of my feet now feels like proper skin again and not like hard bulging leather. My extra advice to you is don't just treat the bunion area -- treat the whole foot, underside as well. That's what I did.

Lugol's Iodine
Posted by Jane (UK) on 11/04/2014

Hi Bill - Thank you so much for your answer!

Please can you remember how long it took before you saw a result?

I am so glad to have found Earth Clinic and your inspiring post. I would be over the moon if this worked for my bunion. Thanks you.

Posted by Mmsg (Somewhere, Europe) on 10/19/2014

Nicole, it seems obvious that your high heels are causing your bunions. Read a bit of Katy Bowman's blog over at Can you find a comfortable and fashionable shoe to work in?

Posted by Nicole (Harmonsburg, Pa) on 10/18/2014

I have believed that massaging my bunions was one of the best things to do for them...I usually do it myself but I REALLY REALLY like it when my husband does it because he just seems to be able to grab them better and his hands are stronger than mine. The only problem is when I FINALLY get him to do it, he just does it for a couple of minutes or falls asleep..I massage his back and get it really good but he has no heart in it when it is my turn..What can I do to get the same passionate massages in return..HELP my bunions are killing me and I work in high heels for 5-6 hours every time I'm there!!! It's getting to the point that they hurt so bad ALL the time and just throb constantly!! I have to work tonight and I'm afraid that I am really going to destroy my feet if I keep on like this...I'm so screwed!!! :(

Lugol's Iodine
Posted by Bill (San Fernando, Philippines) on 03/28/2014

I had bunions on both feet for many years and it wasn't till I came to the Philippines that I got rid of them completely. I had two large bunions, one on the top of my big toe and one at the base -- on both feet.

Doctors seem to believe that bunions are caused genetically or by rubbing on the shoe. I think this is bunk. Bunions are caused by deep-seated subdermal fungal/bacterial infestations in these regions. I also had very hard and unusual callous build up all around the back of my heels. And when you think about it, a foot inside a shoe wearing socks etc is a prime region for sweat build up and infections.

What's more, when I came to the Philippines and wore simple sandals and flip-flops every day (not shoes) my bunions still did not improve.

The fastest way to get rid of bunions/hard skin build-up on the feet is to first shave these regions down to the normal skin if you can and then apply a disinfectant like iodine to get rid of any discreet fungal/bacterial infections sub-dermally.

I would also not recommend topical application of lugol's iodine alone.

Only about 4%-8% of the iodine is absorbed into the skin this way. But if you use a 50-50 mix of one teaspoon of 70% DMSO(Dimethyl-sulfoxide) and one teaspoon lugol's iodine on the shaved bunion regions, you will get much faster results because of the penetrative and transdermal carrier abilities of DMSO. In other words DMSO carries much more iodine into the skin transdermally giving you faster and quicker outcomes.

DMSO is also an anti-inflammatory and will reduce the pain. Result: All bunion pathogens killed with no more bunion formation thereafter.

Coconut Oil
Posted by Brian (Sth Aus, Australia) on 10/15/2013

Coconut Oil

Just over a week ago I began to limp from minor pain in my left foot. Closer inspection revealed a lump protruding at the base of my small toe about the size of a pea. I have never experienced this before but I googled ‘bunions' anyway and proceeded to tick every box for descriptions and matched every photo for the identification of a Tailor's Bunion.

Whether it really was a bunion will never be confirmed by a doctor because it's completely gone – no limp, no pain, no lump. But it sure is a strange place to get a pimple if that's all it was.

The only treatment I used on it was a 1 minute morning massage with a tiny bit of Coconut Oil and then putting a sock on immediately after, for 3 days. That was it. On the 4th day all was well again so I stopped treating it and haven't put a foot wrong since.


Posted by Catherine (Wellington, New Zealand) on 07/30/2013

Hi Sian, There is a little known therapy called "Foot Joint Mobilisation" which has great success with bunions, hammer toes etc. Google for a practitioner in your area.

Posted by Sian (London) on 07/29/2013

I have had a moderate bunion for three years on my right foot and the beginnings of one on my left.

I have been vigorously massaging my feet daily for 15 minutes for a few months and it has had an effect of reducing the inflammation in the toe joint. They are still red when I take my shoes off at the end of the day but they have definitely have improved and are not nearly quite as painful as before. I am going to stick with my foot massage and try adding Tagetes oil to my plain massage oil which is recommended for foot problems and there has been a lot of positive things said about this oil in recent years. I wear looser shoes now with a wider toe box - the tight, pointy shoes have all gone on Ebay. Also, one could try Pilates foot exercises to strengthen the feet.

I couldn't go as far to say massage can cure bunions as they are structural anomalies - extra bone has been formed on the toe joint, but it can bring great relief and stop the worsening of the condition.

Shark Cartilage or Tiger Balm
Posted by Chuck (Cape Coral, Florida) on 03/01/2013

I developed a bunion more than twenty years ago. I heard shark cartilage could help so I started taking it. The bunion shrank and I never even considered having surgery as my friend, Sandy, did. More recentyly I have used Tiger Balm (red) on it with good success as well.

Posted by Idow (Naples, Fl) on 02/28/2013

Thank you EarthClinic! I tried the massage (without oil), just manually moving the big toe both clockwise and counter clockwise..... and it worked!

I'm now able to wear my old high heel shoes, although I'm careful to take them off as soon as I get home.

The manipulation of the big toes have increased flexibility, reduced pain and decreased my bunions drastically. Sometimes I use coconut oil b/c it smells great, but most of the time I just massage while watching TV w/out oil. I also spread all my toes out a lot, now that I know the importance of stretching!

Posted by Casey (Grand Rapids, Michigan) on 08/29/2012

I almost married a woman because she would massage my bunion. It helps SO MUCH and provides SO MUCH relief; provide this massage and please a sufferer beyond belief!

Posted by Wanda (Santa Cruz, Ca, Usa) on 04/20/2012

I have had an aunt and a niece who both correct their bunions using a combination of olive oil & turmeric (raw) massages, plus wearing a bunion splint at night & in the day when posible. The aunt's took longer but improved in weeks & both were almost gone in months (the girl's esp). Massage following techniques for stimulating blood flow and elongating muscles of feet 2 X day. Drink big glass of water before each massage. Exercise feet, esp skating, xcountry ski, beach walking, jogging. if u stick with it u will be amazed.

Posted by Sharon (New Orleans, La) on 11/30/2011

I was in tears after massaging my bunion. It seemed to make the pain worse. I tried the turmeric rub, and had instant reducion in my pain level. I'm a believer for life. Thanks for this site, I will cx my cortisone injection scheduled for tomorrow. Sharon

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