Support Healthy Joints - Eight Lifestyle Tips: Caring for your joints may not be something you think about on a day to day basis. However, as we age, cartilage, which acts as a cushion-like barrier, starts to break down. This process can be painful and may even lead to more serious complications, such as osteoarthritis.
While staying young forever might sound like the best way to combat joint pain, there are a handful of more realistic remedies to promote healthy joint function. Here are eight ways to support healthy joints:
Support Healthy Joints - Lifestyle Tip #1: Get Moving
A sedentary lifestyle can cause stiffness in your joints. While we all love to “veg out” on occasion and binge-watch our favorite Netflix show, it is important you stay active to keep your joints happy and healthy. If you work a desk job, be sure to take breaks often and change positions. These small little breaks can make all the difference.
Support Healthy Joints - Lifestyle Tip #2: Watch Your Weight
Excess weight can put a great deal of stress on your joints, especially on your hips, knees, and back. In fact, for every pound gained, a person puts four times more stress on their knees. It is important you regularly monitor your weight to prevent damage to your joints. Talk with your doctor to learn what steps you can take to drop excess weight in a healthy manner.
Support Healthy Joints - Lifestyle Tip #3: Protect Your Joints
Sports that physically demanding are a great way to build muscle and support your joints. However, it is important you wear proper safety gear to prevent physical injury. Wear knee and elbow pads when skating or playing contact sports.
Support Healthy Joints - Lifestyle Tip #4: Strengthen Your Core
A strong core can improve your balance, which reduces your risk of falling and injuring yourself. Try pilates and/or yoga, as these can help strengthen your abdominal, back, and hip muscles.
Support Healthy Joints - Lifestyle Tip #5: Eat Seafood
A diet with plenty of fish can help reduce inflammation in your joints. Fish contains omega 3 fatty acids, with help keep joints healthy. If you have trouble incorporating fish into your diet, try taking fish oil capsules instead.
Support Healthy Joints - Lifestyle Tip #6: Increase Bone Strength
We all know that milk is great source of calcium that helps keep our bones healthy and strong. However, dairy is not the only rich source of calcium. Leafy, green vegetables such as kale and broccoli can also help improve bone strength, which will help take some of the stress off your joints.
Support Healthy Joints - Lifestyle Tip #7: Retain Posture
Proper posture is important to protect all joints from the neck down. Simple exercises such as walking or jogging can help you maintain good posture. Swimming is another exercise that can also promote healthy joint function.
Support Healthy Joints - Lifestyle Tip #8: Manage Stress
Cortisol is a natural hormone related to stress. Keeping this hormone in check can help lower the production of collagen, a compound that aids healthy joints. Diaphragmatic breathing for 5 to 10 minutes may help lower stress hormone levels. Yoga may also help reduce stress, while simultaneously increasing flexibility and promoting good posture.