One of the main contributors to joint pain is inflammation. Many people don’t realize how joint pain can affect the entire body and its ability to heal. Inflammation is the human body’s reaction to damage or injury, but when it’s severe, inflammation can cause an impairment of mobility. Luckily, it can be addressed on a cellular level and there are quite a few inflammation-reducing foods, supplements and types of exercises that can help.
Incorporate all of these methods to reduce inflammation and improve your quality of life:
1. Detox your kitchen.
Empty out your fridge and your pantry, remove all foods that are high in sugar, fat, and salt. These foods can cause joint pain and increase inflammation. Remove foods with unhealthy saturated fats. Replace these foods with low-calorie fiber-rich foods, and ‘friendly’ fats such as kale, leafy greens, avocado, and eggs. Fruit is always a better alternative then pastries or high-sugar cereals. Although fruit contains natural sugar, it’s a healthy option and offers a myriad of vitamins that are easily digestible since fruit is high in fiber.
2. Grocery shop specifically with healthy joints in mind.
When you go shopping, purchase healthy foods that will keep you mobile. Here are some excellent choices that will help with the reduction of joint pain:
Vegetables full of vitamins and phytonutrients that reduce inflammation (zucchini, red and yellow peppers, tomatoes, mushrooms).
Choose spices to reduce inflammation and liven up your meals (including ginger, turmeric, garlic, and cinnamon).
Pick fruits full of inflammation-reducing properties such as bromelain and fiber (apple, avocado, pomegranate, and pineapple all have nutrients that reduce inflammation).
Beans are packed with protein and fiber (chickpeas, lentils, and black beans).
Buy bread and pasta that are tasty and low-carb (such as pumpernickel, whole wheat, fettuccine egg pasta)
3. Drink tea.
Green tea helps burn calories plus it protects your cartilage, reduces the rate of bone loss, and is a powerful inflammation fighter. Many who experience inflammation can drink green tea for a natural approach to reducing the pain in all the joints.
4. Add more fiber.
Fiber helps you to feel full and bridges the gap between meals. Lowering your body weight can help with reducing joint pain by putting less pressure on the joints. Eating a snack that’s fiber-rich is also a great way to help fight off sugar cravings. When you’re reaching for a snack, choose something like fruit with peanut butter, or veggies with hummus. It will satisfy your hunger, satiate your taste buds, and you won’t feel like you’re denying yourself in the slightest.
5. Pack on the protein.
Choose to eat more protein-rich foods, such as lean cuts of grass-fed beef, organic wild salmon, and nuts. These powerful protein sources provide healthy saturated fats plus inflammation-fighting omega-3’s that will help keep you trim and give your joints some relief.
Oh, you saw this one coming! Yoga is incredible for keeping the joints lubricated, healthy, and strong. As with any type of movement, being mindful of your range of motion and any limitations your body currently possesses is imperative to moving you in the right direction: way far away from joint pain. Less is more, and approaching your physical practice with the mindset that you are there to decrease your joint pain, not add to it will lead you down the path of much healthier, better working joints.