Friday, 23 January 2015

Reducing Joint Pain

Abbey when she kept hitting her elbow and making it bleed

Joint pain is a really common issue in our society at the moment, so much so that many people believe it is simply a part of life. Well, it's not meant to be, and there are so many things you can do to prevent, reduce or get rid of it all together.

1. Reduce your intake of inflammatory foods
This includes red meat, alcohol and sugary foods, such as soft drink, white bread and lollies.
While inflammation (which presents as swelling, pain, redness and/or heat) is an important part of our immune and healing response, it is unnecessarily tiring for our bodies to be constantly dealing with reducing inflammation that is only there because we are consuming it.

2. Increase your intake of anti-inflammatory foods
This makes perfect sense after reading #1, right? Give your body a helping hand by eating lots of fruits and vegetables (especially berries, pineapple and green leafy vegetables), and other foods such as walnuts and salmon.

3. Find a good supplement to help you get back on track
There are many joint support combinations out there, and it will ultimately be up to you as to which one you prefer, due to finances and the fact that every one of us is different, and therefore may experience different results than someone else.
I would suggest a turmeric supplement - turmeric (Curcuma longa) is an anti-inflammatory herb, traditionally used in Indian cooking, medicine and beauty routines. My Nanna takes turmeric everyday to help reduce the pain she experiences from arthritis and a frozen shoulder and she loves it.
TIP: make sure the turmeric supplement (which may be called curcumin - after its active constituent) contains black pepper, as it increases its availability within the body, increasing its anti-inflammatory action.

4. Invest in a heat pack
By placing a warm heat pack over stiff knees, for example, you are increasing the blood flow to the area, resulting in more nutrient delivery, and an increased healing rate.

5. Do not under-estimate the value of a professional
Going to see a physio and getting a weekly massage could make the world of difference. Remember that dealing with joints is their profession and they have a lot of knowledge about how to treat them, so it is important you follow their advice and actually do any exercises they recommend for you - if you don't follow their advice, you can't complain if you aren't seeing the results you hoped for.

This is provided purely as information, not medical advice - if you are unwell, please seek assistance from your healthcare professional.

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