We all know that what we put into our body has a big effect on our health. But, when it comes to nutrition, our joint health isn’t what we usually think of. We’re here to change that. We’ve all heard about the benefits of calcium for bone health, but we thought we’d take a look at the other nutrients you need to keep limber, and, more importantly, where you can find them.
Healthy fats for healthy joints
You’ll no doubt have heard of the many benefits that omega 3s offer. The main types, EPA and DHA, have incredible anti-inflammatory properties so if you’re a sufferer of arthritis, a daily dose of these healthy fats could keep swelling and pain to a minimum.
Find your friendly fats…
Omega 3 can be found in oily fish, such as mackerel, salmon and tuna. If you’re not a fish-lover, though, your best bet is to snack on the next best thing, nuts. Walnuts, hazelnuts, cashews and brazil nuts are all rich in ALA, another friendly fat.
Give your body a collagen boost
Vitamin C is the body’s best immune-booster and it’s also pretty central when it comes to collagen production. Collagen’s not just good for your skin, though. It’s also important in keeping connective tissues, ligaments and joints themselves working properly and pain-free.
Get your five-a-day…
This is where your five-a-day is really important. Make sure you’re getting a daily dose of dark, leafy greens, bell peppers, broccoli and peas. There’s much to be said for eating your greens! If you’re not a veggie person, good old oranges are also a good source of vitamin C.
Up your calcium absorption
It’s all well and good increasing your calcium intake, but without vitamin D, your bones can’t absorb the essential mineral. What’s more, vitamin D is essential for nerve health and boasts anti-inflammatory properties.
Seek the sunshine…
The sun tends to be the first place we look when it comes to upping our vitamin D supply. But, in the winter months, it’s difficult to catch enough rays to boost enough of the nutrient, not to mention the damaging effect too much sun has on your skin. Instead, opt for cheese and egg yolks to make sure you’re getting the nutrients your joints need.
Say goodbye to inflammation
A healthy dose of antioxidants is the perfect way to relieve inflammation, pain and stiffness. Antioxidants tackle free radicals, the compounds that can cause tissue damage. Arthritis sufferers often turn to anti-inflammatory antioxidants where medication fails.
A daily dose of berries…
The best source of antioxidants is berries. Blueberries and goji berries tend to have the highest concentrations. Dark chocolate is also a good source of antioxidants, and pecans, artichokes and kidney beans are other foods to incorporate into a joint-loving diet.
A nutrient-filled diet is key to keeping your joints supple and pain-free. Of course, as always, check with your doctor before making major changes to your diet or taking any supplements. At Horder Healthcare, we’re specialists in osteopathy and joint and bone care and our professionals are always happy to advise on treatments as well as prevention.