Arthiritis is a common and most people are aware of this medical condition. Among all arthiritis -Osteoarthrits is the most common form of arthritis. It is a non-inflammatory degenerative condition of joints, characterized by degeneration of articular cartilage and formation of new bone that is called osteophytes.
Osteoarthritis can affect any joint in the body, though it most commonly affects joints in hands, hips, knees and spine. Osteoarthritis typically affects just one joint, though in some cases, such as with finger arthritis, several joints can be affected. Osteoarthritis gradually worsens with time, and no cure exists. But osteoarthritis treatments can relieve pain and help you to remain active. Taking steps to actively manage osteoarthritis may help patient gain control over his osteoarthritis pain.
Osteoarthritis symptoms often develop slowly and worsen over time. Signs and symptoms include:
- Pain in a joint during or after use, or after a period of inactivity.
- Tenderness in the joint when you apply light pressure.
- Stiffness in a joint that may be most noticeable when patient wake up in the morning or after a period of inactivity.
- Loss of flexibility may make it difficult to use the joint.
- Grating sensation when moving the joint
- Bone spurs, which appear as hard lumps, may form around the affected joint.
- Swelling in some cases
Osteoarthritis symptoms most commonly affect the hands, hips, knees and spine. Unless one has been injured or placed unusual stress on a joint, it’s uncommon for osteoarthritis symptoms to affect jaw, shoulder, elbows, wrists or ankles.
Osteoarthritis occurs when the cartilage e that cushions the ends of bones in the joints deteriorates over time. The smooth surface of the cartilage becomes rough, causing irritation. Eventually, if the cartilage wears down completely, patient may be left with bone rubbing on bone — causing the ends of the bones to become damaged and the joints to become painful. It isn’t clear what causes osteoarthritis in most cases. Researchers suspect that it’s a combination of factors, including being overweight, the aging process, joint injury or stress, heredity, and muscle weakness.
Risk factors: Factors that increase risk of osteoarthritis include:
Old age: Osteoarthritis typically occurs in older adults. People under 40 rarely experience osteoarthritis.
Sex: Women are more likely to develop osteoarthritis, though it isn’t clear why?
Bone deformities: Some people are born with malformed joints or defective cartilage, which can increase the risk of osteoarthritis. ·
Joint injuries: Injuries, such as those that occur when playing sports or from an accident, may increase the risk of osteoarthritis.
Obesity: Carrying more body weight places more stress on weight-bearing joints, such as knees. But obesity has also been linked to an increased risk of osteoarthritis in the hands, as well.
Diet: Avoid processed and sugary foods and drinks, eat more fruits and vegetables, foods that is rich in antioxidants helps in decreasing pain and inflammation, eating food rich in Omega-3 Fatty Acid. Use of Olive Oil helps in preventing inflammation, eating fruits rich in vitamin C helps in build collagen and connective tissue. Examples are citrus fruits, strawberries, red peppers and cabbage.
#1 Bananas and Plantains
Bananas and Plantains are high in magnesium and potassium which increases your bone density. Magnesium is also known to alleviate symptoms of arthritis, so peel a banana or fry up some plantains!
Berries also pack a walloping antioxidant punch! Antioxidants protect your body against inflammation and free radicals, molecules that can damage cells and organs. Pay special attention to blueberries. USDA researcher Ronald Prior, Ph.D., showed that a one-cup serving of Wild Blueberries had more antioxidant capacity than a serving of cranberries, strawberries, plums and raspberries.
Not only can omega-3s found in fish significantly reduce joint pain and shorten the duration of morning stiffness, but studies, such as those reported in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, show that increased levels of omega-3 fatty acids also have enabled people taking non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) to reduce their dosage or discontinue use.
#4 Green Tea
Many studies have shown that green tea possesses anti-inflammatory properties. One study showed that mice predisposed to a condition similar to human osteoarthritis had mild arthritis and little evidence of cartilage damage and bone erosion when green tea polyphenols were added to their drinking water. Another study showed that when added to human cartilage cell cultures, the active ingredients in green tea inhibited chemicals and enzymes that lead to cartilage damage and breakdown. Brew a cup from a tea bag, or just pick up a bottle of Lipton Green Tea at the supermarket!
#5 Orange Juice
Vitamin C is important in the development of normal cartilage. A deficiency of Vitamin C might lead to the development of weak cartilage. In 2010, The Arthritis Research Institute of America, Inc. published an important article in the Journal Public Health Nutrition which suggested that Vitamin C supplementation may indeed be beneficial in preventing new cases of knee osteoarthritis.
Soy protein, found in tofu, has been shown to reduce pain and swelling in chronic knee joint pain not attributed to injury or rheumatoid arthritis. Results were found to be more beneficial for men than women. Tofu can be cubed and fried with noodles, or bought prepackaged as tofu pups or tofu burgers. There are even recipes that call for it in fruit smoothies!
#7 Peanut Butter
Vitamin B3, found in peanut butter, is a supplement that may help people with osteoarthritis. One 1996 study (National Institutes of Health) showed that taking vitamin B3 was more effective than a placebo in improving flexibility and reducing inflammation. It’s peanut butter and jelly time!
#8 Whole Grain Breads and Cereals
In one placebo controlled trial, those with rheumatoid arthritis (and by extension osteoarthritis) had less disability, morning stiffness, and pain when they took high doses of pantothenic acid (Brewer’s Yeast) daily.
Lobster is an excellent source of vitamin E. Vitamin E may be the key to fighting arthritis-like damage. According to a study from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine, vitamin E (also known as alpha tocopherol) and other naturally occurring antioxidants in the diet appear to protect against knee osteoarthritis. Researchers found vitamin E has a protective effect against knee osteoarthritis in Caucasians but they did not find the same protective effect in African Americans.
For years, professional coaches have recommended pineapple to athletes to help heal sports injuries. That’s because a key enzyme in pineapple called bromelain helps reduce inflammation.
Super foods are a special category of foods found in nature. By definition they are nutrient dense meaning they pack a lot of punch for their weight as far as goodness goes and the ones we have listed above are selected because they will help your fight against osteoarthritis and help you cut back on your prescriptions. They are superior sources of anti-oxidants and essential nutrients – nutrients we need but cannot make ourselves. For more information on each of these super foods in your day to day life please have a look at our Diet Research section of the Website. Each super food is covered in more detail and there are more foods listed there as well. Many of them are actually organized by the vitamin, such as vitamin E, and you’ll find a list of all the foods that contain E, not just lobster. We hope this list hopes you on the road to relief. Try some of the exercises on our site too!
Exercise: Sitting in a chair, but with the help of a wall. Press your back flush up against a wall, and lower your body down to a seated position. Then, slowly rise up. Do 10 to 12 reps. One can also try this move with an exercise ball
an effective hamstring stretch, sit down on the ground, put one leg out in front of you and bend the other leg with the foot flush with your knee. Stretch forward as far as you can comfortably go. Switch legs and repeat.
Full squats seem a little too difficult, try a half squat. These types of squats can be very effective at leg and knee strengthening. Start by standing up straight. Then, squat down about half way between a standing position and a seated position with your legs at a 90-degree angle. Try to do two sets of 10 to 12 reps. (You may need to build up to that.)
Though Osteoarthritis is chronic disorder, you can prevent it or if you have it already then you can live in a better way with it. Prevention is always better than cure. So let’s concentrate on exercises as well as healthier diet option.
Ultimately, eating right, exercise and living a healthy life style can prevent most of us from all sorts of ailments so that we all can lead a healthier life style in future.