In this fast paced world, our bodies tend to go through torture daily. As a result, JOINT PAIN is becoming more and more common. Joint pain, often caused by inflammation, prevents one from doing the activities they love. Currently, joint pain is relieved temporarily by either over the counter prescriptions (such as aspirin and anti-inflammatory drugs) or surgery. I have Osteoarthritis in my knees and feet, so I know just how painful everyday movement can be. I've been seen by several rheumatologists for years, with only temporary relief for this debilitating painful illness, utilizing drug therapy and physical therapy. The best most drugs can do is temporarily mask pain, and surgeries often involve additional complications.
However, there is an answer!
Nature has provided our world with many anti-inflammatory foods, foods that offer no-side effects, and also taste great. Try the items below to improve your joint mobility and quality of life.
Berries: Strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries help slow wear and tear of your joints. The antioxidant Vitamin C present in them keeps free radicals - cell-damaging molecules produced by inflammation - from wreaking havoc. RESEARCH has shown that certain antioxidants may relieve pain, slow the progression of arthritis, or even prevent arthritis from forming. Additionally, vitamin C plays an important role in the formation of collagen, a key component of cartilage and bone. Other foods rich in vitamin C include oranges, guava, broccoli, pineapple and papaya.
Flaxseed oil: Use of flax oil reduces pain due to any type of inflammatory condition, including joint troubles. Omega-3 fatty acids present in flaxseed are the healthiest of fats for people with arthritis or other inflammatory disorders. These fatty acids encourage the production of body chemicals that help control inflammation -- in the joints, bloodstream, and tissues. According to a review of RESEARCH on omega-3 fatty acids, omega-3 (in doses of 3 grams or more per day) has been found effective for those with rheumatoid arthritis, reducing morning stiffness and the number of joints that are tender or swollen. You can notice a reduction in pain in your joints by adding just 1-3 tablespoons a day of flax oil to your diet.
Fish: Certain varieties of fish like salmon, tuna, sardines, mackerel, and anchovies are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which help reduce inflammation and relieve joint pain. Additionally, some of these fish (such as wild salmon, mackerel, sardines and herring) are also rich in vitamin D. Vitamin D is not only important for bone strength, but also for other body functions, including joint health. Studies have shown that getting adequate amounts of vitamin D reduces the risk of both RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS and osteoarthritis.
Turmeric: This Indian spice commonly found in most kitchens contains a powerful, non-toxic compound called curcumin, which has been proven to contain anti-inflammatory properties. It appears to work by preventing a protein (known as NF-KB), associated with increased INFLAMMATION, from being activated in the joint. Take half teaspoon of turmeric powder with warm water at least three times per day.
Green Tea: The flavonoids in GREEN TEA are potent natural anti-inflammatory compounds that have been shown in numerous studies to reduce joint pain caused by arthritis.
Olive Oil: The healthy monounsaturated fat in olive oil is used by the body to produce natural anti-inflammatory agents. These anti-inflammatory agents help reduce the severity of both ARTHRITIS and general joint pain. Also, olive oil is rich in polyphenols, which are known to have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and anticoagulant actions. Add olive oil to the diet by using it in place of butter or other vegetable oils when cooking. For the highest antioxidant content, choose "extra virgin" olive oil.
Ginger: Ginger is high in anti-inflammatory chemicals, which helps reduce JOINT PAIN. Use it as a seasoning on food or brew it in tea.
Probiotics: Probiotics help keep the bad bacteria, yeasts and molds in the digestive system in check. An overgrowth of bad bacteria and yeast in the digestive system is called dysbiosis and is connected with RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS.
Papaya: Papain, a protein-digesting enzyme, combined with antioxidants such as vitamin C and vitamin E present in Papaya, helps to REDUCE INFLAMMATION, and improves digestion.
Nuts and seeds: Nuts and seeds such as almonds, walnuts and sesame seeds also contain anti-inflammatory omega-3 essential fats. When eaten raw or roasted, you get extra crunch and anti-inflammatory benefits at the same time.
Mushroom: The Chinese have enjoyed the immune-boosting properties and anti-inflammatory properties of mushrooms…now it’s your turn.
Steer clear of fatty meats, foods which contain saturated and trans fats, soft drinks, sugary juice drinks and processed food, as they tend to aggravate the situation. If you don't have any overt INFLAMMATION, the above foods will still do their part to maintain good health and mobility!