How can I decrease my joint pain and stiffness, plus slow the progression of my arthritis?
Joint pain and joint stiffness is a hot topic, especially now that we have new, better, and safer treatment options. Rarely, joint pain can be a serious medical issue, so always check with your medical provider to exclude anything worrisome, especially if you aren’t improving.
The most common cause of joint pain is osteoarthritis (also called degenerative joint disease), which is caused by wear & tear or trauma to our joints, and impacts 20 million Americans. As the cartilage padding in the joint thins, the joint becomes inflamed, and if allowed to progress, eventually you have bone grinding on bone–causing substantial pain.
Daily non-pounding exercise is the best treatment for early to moderate arthritis. Movement keeps your joints flexible, prevents stiffness, and builds the muscles that support your joints.
Surprisingly, your diet has a big impact on joint pain. Eating refined carbs and bad fats increases inflammation, especially in arthritic joints. White rice, white flour, sugar, skinless potatoes, fatty meats, and fatty dairy (including 2% reduced fat dairy products that aren’t really low fat) all increase inflammation substantially. Enjoy exercise and a diet including lean protein, more seafood, abundant fruits and vegetables, beans, nuts, virgin olive oil and organic canola oil for cooking. With this type of dietary intake, many people achieve substantial joint pain relief within a couple weeks.
To your health and to less joint pain too!
Steven Masley, MD, FAAFP, CNS, FACN