May is Arthritis Awareness Month and is the perfect time to improve your healthy lifestyle. According to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies, about 100 million Americans suffer from chronic joint pain. If you are one of those people, take comfort in knowing that relieving your joint pain may be easier than you might think. This month, learn how to ease your pain with these simple healthy lifestyle tips.
It may seem counterintuitive to move your joints when they're a source of pain, but moving is exactly what they need. Exercise can be a key component in keeping joint pain at ease and can also give you more energy, improve your mood and strengthen the muscles around your joints. But you don’t need to run a marathon to help reduce the symptoms of arthritis. Even light exercise, like walking just 30 minutes a day, encourages joint fluid to circulate, delivering nutrients that keep cartilage healthy and vital. If walking is painful, try a stationary bike or aqua-therapy to build strength and endurance.
No special diet or ‘miracle food’ can cure arthritis, but some conditions may be helped by avoiding or including certain foods in your diet. The healthiest of fats for people with arthritis or other inflammatory disorders are omega-3 fatty acids. While fried or processed foods may increase levels of inflammation in our body, research suggests that omega-3 fatty acids actually work to decrease inflammation and reduce symptoms associated with arthritis and joint pain. Reap the benefits of omega 3s by including foods such as salmon, sardines, anchovies, rainbow trout, Pacific oysters, flaxseeds, chia seeds and walnuts in your diet. Additionally, foods with high amounts of certain antioxidants like Vitamin C, may help prevent arthritis, slow its progression and relieve pain. Other foods like extra-virgin olive oil and certain spices such as ginger and turmeric can also have powerful effects in reducing joint paint.
Supplement Your Diet
In addition to regular exercise and eating right, proper supplementation can combat inflammation and reduce pain associated with arthritis. Fight joint pain with these three supplements:
Glucosamine: Glucosamine is thought to help with joint pain by protecting cartilage wear and tear. It also prevents inflammation of the joints and adjoining muscles, while helping your joints to move better.
Chondroitin: This arthritis supplement, when taken with glucosamine helps rebuild cartilage and can lower arthritis pain and inflammation. Experts believe this arthritis treatment works by helping to keep cartilage healthy, and a review of studies found that it significantly improved joint function and helped with pain and inflammation.
SAMe: Several studies have found S-adenosyl-methionine, a chemical that occurs naturally in the body, to be effective in repairing joints and reducing muscle stiffness, muscle pain and fatigue.
Take Your Juice Plus+
Juice Plus+ is a great addition to any diet to help reduce arthritis symptoms. Numerous clinical studies report that Juice Plus+ helps reduce oxidative stress, which evidence increasingly shows may play a big role in joint destruction. Providing antioxidants from 25 fruits, vegetables, berries and grains, Juice Plus+ helps increase key antioxidant levels in the bloodstream. You can read more about Juice Plus+ clinical research results here.
This month, celebrate Arthritis Awareness Month by making a vow to live a healthier, pain-free lifestyle. What steps will you take to ease your joint pain? Let us know in the comment section below!