All About Joint Health
From protecting your bones to providing your body’s movement, joints are one of the most important parts of your body. But how can we take care of our joints? Better yet, what are joints? We here at Agape Nutrition are here to help!
What Are Joints?
According to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, “A joint is where two or more bones are joined together. Joints can be rigid, like the joints between the bones in your skull, or movable, like knees, hips, and shoulders.” Cartilage is a key component of a functioning joint, acting as a protective surface that allows bones to slip and slide past each other, resulting in the movement of your body. When cartilage starts to deteriorate in the joints, that’s when we run into problems!
How to Keep Joints Healthy
According to Dr. Sanchez Sotelo (via the Mayo Clinic), “Obesity, overuse or injuries from accidents also can damage joints and cartilage.” So how can you keep your joints healthy?
One of the most prominent preventative measures for joint issues is exercise. Physical movement (even if you already have arthritis) will help keep the muscles around your joints up to par for supporting them. Make sure, when exercising, to wear the proper protective gear to keep your feet and knees safe, as an injury will affect your joints negatively and lead to arthritis later on. The more your body can support you, the less pressure gets put on your joints!
Additionally, eating a healthy diet can aid in balancing your weight and taking pressure off your joints. This doesn’t mean that you need to be a different body shape or size than you are now to have healthy joints. Instead, movement and a diet that is beneficial for your body and mind will aid in relieving pressure off your joints and keep you healthier all around. Weight is ancillary to all of that.
Supplements are also an easy alternative to adding some additional nutrients to your diet. Glucosamine is a popular supplement for joints and is said to decrease the speed at which the space between your joints deteriorates.
Note: We recommend you talk to your doctor before drastically changing your diet and exercise routine. Shaping your healthcare plan to your specific needs is paramount to keeping you healthy. Some supplements may interact poorly with prescribed medication, and intensified exercise right off the bat may be unhelpful for you. Your primary care provider will consider these elements to craft a care plan that is right for you.
If you’d like to consider adding a supplement for joint health to your diet, check out our list of joint-specific supplements here! You can also subscribe to our weekly newsletter and get helpful, sometimes joint-related articles, like “Best Supplements for Arthritis”.