A joint is where the bones are connected. Most of the joints have cartilage at the ends of the bones which allow bones to glide over one another and helps to protect the bones from rubbing against each other. A healthy joint is rigid, providing support to our body and allow us to move. However, damaged joint from disease or injury can affect our movement and causes a lot of pain.
About one-third of adults are reported to have arthritis (inflammation of joints) within the past 30 days. You might think that arthritis affects only older people, but it actually affects young people too. Knee pain is the most common joint pain followed by shoulder and hip.
There are many types of joint pain, such as:
Osteoarthritis- common among older people. The surface cartilage on the joint will break down and wears away, causes the bones to rub together and damage the bone tissue next to the cartilage. Thus, it results in swelling, pain or loss of motion in joint.
Rheumatoid arthritis- immune system mistakenly attack own joint tissues. This will lead to inflammation, pain and swelling of joints. Persistent inflammation can also cause permanent damage to the joints, at the same time affects the heart, lungs and other organs.
Gout- another form of arthritis which caused by formation of uric acid crystals in the joints, commonly in the big toe.
Knee Injuries- Mild knee injuries include iliotibial band syndrome, runner’s knee (tenderness or pain near the front of the knee cap), or tendonitis (degeneration or inflammation within a tendon). Knee injuries can involve damage or bruising to cartilage or ligaments.
There are several factors that can cause joint pain, where the most common risk factor is age. When a person is ages, he/she tends to have weaker joint. Diet can affect joint condition too. There are certain foods that consist of inflammatory properties such as fried foods, soda, alcohol, sugar and trans-saturated fat.
Besides inflammation, these foods also cause gaining of weight. When body weight is increased, stress and strain on the knees will increase too. Based on Harvard study, they found that people who regularly consume sugary soft drink has had sugary soft drink a day has higher risk of developing Rheumatoid arthritis. Joint pain is also can caused by overuse of joint during intense exercise.
By consuming foods like fatty salmon fish, sardines, walnuts and pumpkin that contains high Omega-3, calcium and Vitamin D can alleviate osteoarthritis and reduce joint pain. Fruits like papaya, avocado, berries and apples help to reduce the risk too. Body weight puts strain on hips, knees and back, it is suggested that we maintain a healthy diet to avoid excess weight gain. For every pound lost, 4 pounds of pressure will be taken off the knees.
Diets does not only benefits weight loss, it also lowers the inflammation in our body. Based on medical studies, supplements that contain of hyaluronic acid, glucosamine, chondroitin sulphate or collagen peptide can benefit joint health. When comes to exercise, try to avoid overusing of joint and always take a low-impact approach to reduce strain on the joints.