If you wish for better joint health and to be rid of joint pain, undoubtedly what you eat does play its role.
Generally, the benefits that can derive from what you eat should help you to:
- Press the inflammation-instigating cytokines down;
- Minimize the risk for bone loss and the diminishing of bone density with the aim to prevent osteoporosis (note: osteoporosis is abnormal loss of bony tissue resulting in fragile porous bones due to a lack of calcium and is mostly happening to postmenopausal women); and
- Build connective tissue such as cartilage, ligaments and tendons;
OR to provide you with:
- Anthocyanin – an antioxidant that has been effective to stop the production of cytokines (note: a type of protein that summons more white cells to attack healthy tissue triggering inflammation that caused pain and other joint problems).
- Fiber – fiber-rich foods can help control blood-sugar levels and keep glucose and insulin under control which is good to restrain inflammation. Eating fiber-rich foods can slow down carbohydrate absorption as noted from Richard Diana, MD and orthopedic surgeon at the Yale School of Medicine.
The following are the foods that you may want to know in your journey for better joint health and joint pain treatment:
- Omega-3 fatty acids – this can provide you with anti-inflammatory benefits. Sources rich in Omega-3 fatty acids include the coldwater fish such as salmon, herring and mackerel, eggs and pastured eggs from hens fed with flaxseeds, fish oil or algae. Fish oil supplements rich in omega-3 fatty acids can be in liquid or capsule form.
- Sulfur – this natural mineral can be easily got from garlic, leeks, alliums and onions or from protein-rich foods such as eggs, poultry, fish and legumes. Daily consumption of sulfur-rich veggies like brussels sprouts, cauliflower and broccoli is highly recommended.
- Blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, cranberries, bilberries, black currants and stone fruits like plums and cherries are all rich in anthocyanin that is good for joints health as well as for heart.
- Vegetables that are darker in color contain higher fiber content. Example of fiber-rich foods includes kale, spinach, artichokes, green peas, legumes (including black beans, split peas and lentils) and whole-kernel grains like brown rice, quinoa and oatmeal.
- Calcium and Vitamin D – Vitamin D plays the role to help our body to better absorb calcium while calcium is needed to build strong bones and teeth. Sources of calcium can be obtained from the daily products (including yogurt, cheese and milk) and dark leafy greens like turnip greens, arugula, kale, mustard greens and collard greens. Also, fatty fish like salmon and mackerel or egg yolks are good sources of vitamin D.
Healthy joint supplements can be a great help to fight inflammation and reduce pain; however, it is advisable to consult your doctors and health professionals for any possible drug interactions and side effects. Health joint supplements likely contain beneficial ingredients such as glucosamine, chondroitin sulfate, turmeric, gingerroot, green tea and boswellia to counter pain, inhibit swelling and restraining inflammation.
Tan Kok Hui
Nutrition Made Simple, Life Made Rich