Healthy Joint Habits
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in five adults in the U.S. are diagnosed with arthritis – making it the most common disability in the country. The CDC projects 45% of adults will contract arthritis in their lifetime. Risk increases with excess weight, insufficient physical activity, and joint injury. Joint cartilage becomes thinner and more vulnerable throughout your lifetime, so adopt these habits early for a lifetime of healthy joints.
Don’t “weight.” The weight-bearing joints in your knees, hips, and back carry all of your body weight. One extra pound places four times the amount of stress on your knees. Adopt regular exercise and a healthy diet to lose excess weight. For women, losing just 11 pounds can cut arthritis pain in half.
Keep moving. Muscles and ligaments surrounding your joints absorb impact from daily activity. A sedentary lifestyle leads to a deterioration of muscle mass, leaving joints over-stressed. Strengthen your joint support system by varying your workouts. Try alternating low-impact aerobics like walking, biking and swimming with flexibility workouts like yoga and pilates.
No pain, all gain. Even minor injuries can weaken cartilage and make your joint vulnerable to inflammation and pain. The CDC estimates joint injury increases lifetime risk for arthritis to 57%. To prevent complications:
- Wear proper shoes and protective gear.
- Incorporate rest days into your schedule.
- Ice joints for ten minutes post-workout to prevent pain and swelling.
- Treat injuries immediately.
Vital nutrients. Support healthy joint function with key nutrients (available in nutritional supplements like Arthaffect®
- Borage Oil – contains gamma-linolenic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid proven to reduce inflammation in patients with rheumatoid arthritis.
- Glucosamine – a building block for cartilage produced by the body; aids in joint growth, repair and maintenance.
- Boswellin – herb used in Eastern medicine for centuries to reduce joint and muscle swelling.
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