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Your joints are complex and dynamic parts of your body – a combination of bones that meet without touching, divided by a soft cartilage, strapped together by ligaments and tendons. They allow your body parts to move with agility and precision (think of all of that texting), yet they are also relied upon for stability like when you carry a heavy weight. The weight of whatever you are carrying – whether it is excess fat or bags of groceries – transmits through your joints; it’s a significant strain on these complex and somewhat delicate structures.

Over time, this repetitive strain and weight-bearing can take a toll on your beloved joints. On this World Arthritis Day, consider making some changes to make your joints healthier and last longer.

4 Tips for Bone and Joint Health

1. Cartilage Support.

This is the soft material that cushions the bones that meet at a joint. Without cartilage, you have bone-against-bone, a painful degenerative state found in advanced arthritis; so it is very important to protect and revitalize your cartilage. One simple and often effective approach is to consume more cartilage in your diet. This can come from home made bone broths, or from supplementation such as from shark cartilage. Other supplemental strategies incorporate certain building blocks of cartilage, such as by using glucosamine, chondroitin- sulfate, hyaluronic acid and collagen. These strategies help your body to repair its own cartilage and extend the life of your joints.

2. Diet Change.

Generally, the healthier your diet, the healthier your joints. This has been shown through many studies. For instance, a 2014 study in the Journal of Stem Cells found that mineral supplements significantly improved the symptoms related to osteoarthritis and even showed signs of improvement in the thickness of cartilage. Some have even found more joint comfort by determining and eliminating food intolerances.

3. Herbal Help.

Your joints are happier when you spice them up. Ginger and turmeric are spices that have naturally anti-inflammatory effects, which can improve the mobility and reduce the pain in your joints. Other herbal extracts that can help include green tea, pomegranate, capsaicin, boswellia, devil’s claw and willow bark.

4. Keep Moving.

It’s true, ‘if you don’t use it, you lose it.’ It’s important to continue your activities and exercise according to your abilities. Walking, swimming, and cycling can all be of benefit. For more advice, speak to a registered physiotherapist.

 

Dr. Rahim Habib ND
About the Author

Rahim Habib is a registered naturopathic doctor with over 15 years of experience in general family practice. He has a special interest in helping patients comprehensively detoxifying their bodies for preventative and therapeutic benefit. He also has a special interest in children’s health, assisting kids in their learning and behavioural health with conditions such as ADHD, Autism spectrum, asthma, allergies and childhood obesity. He also helps adults with chronic conditions, such as thyroid disorders, infertility, inflammation, obesity, autoimmunity, dementia and cancer care. He is the director of the Four Seasons Naturopathic Clinic for Detoxification and Healing and can be reached at 905-597-7201 or www.FamilyNaturopath.ca.