We often give them little thought day-to-day – but our joints keep us mobile, flexible and enable us to stay on the go and maintain our busy lifestyles. Joint health can impact upon our overall wellbeing – so keeping them supple and strong should be a key concern for everyone.
Sadly most Americans only start to consider joint health once they experience issues with their joints – most commonly pain, discomfort or immobility. But when we care for our joints consistently throughout our lives, we can support better movement and flexibility even as we age.
If you’re struggling with joint pain or loss of mobility, don’t worry – it’s not too late to alleviate those symptoms and restore better joint health! Here are some easy-to-incorporate tips and lifestyle changes you can make to take better care of your joints – at any age.
1. Stay active (and practice yoga)
Staying active is the key to healthy, happy joints. This could look like walking a few thousand steps each day, going for a gentle jog once or twice week, or getting a standing desk at work.
We recommend yoga because it is a low-impact activity (joint friendly) and specifically focuses on the joints, allowing movement into areas that are often neglected through long periods sitting down at work. This gradually strengthens the joints through conditioning the muscles and connective tissue, making them more resilient to wear and tear.
Making time for regular exercise like yoga and Pilates (or any strengthening/cardio) also enables us to maintain a healthy weight – an important factor for joint health.
2. Focus on an anti-inflammatory diet
Inflammation can have a significant impact on joint health. Although inflammation can be caused by certain medications and natural causes, often it is due to lifestyle elements that can easily be altered. Many inflammatory substances come from our diets – such as processed meats, refined sugars and unhealthy fats, in addition to chemical agents such as pesticides and plastics.
Focusing on consuming fresh, organic wholefoods where possible can help with this – as well as ensuring you’re getting a healthy dose of good fats on a daily basis (think oily fish, nuts, seeds and avocados).
3. Address stress
Many people with chronic conditions such as fibromyalgia and chronic pain suffer with intense joint pain which prevents them from staying as active as they’d like – resulting in a self-perpetuating cycle that’s hard to break free from. Studies have shown that reducing stress can have a positive impact on the health and wellbeing of people living with chronic illness – noting lessened pain sensitivity and increased mobility were especially enhanced in patients who focused on their emotional health.
Reducing stress looks different for everyone. Look at your current lifestyle and identify where you can carve out time just for you to help you cope with the ups and downs better. This could look like meditation, booking a massage, journaling (small changes) or even quitting your job or relocating (big changes). Hormone Helper and Serenease can both help to maintain better mood and combat the impact of external stressors, through supporting better brain health and hormonal balance.
4. Supplement your diet
Where your lifestyle is good and you want (or need) a little extra help, supplements can be an easy and effective way to take better care of your joints. Prioritizing vitamin D and calcium will help to strengthen bones, whilst collagen (found in our Belly Fix blend) supports the muscles and connective tissues maintaining flexibility and strength to support the joints.
5. Say goodbye to smoking and alcohol
Smoking and alcohol consumption have many negative effects for body and mind – but they can also impact upon our joint health, too. Smoking in particular increases the risk of osteoporosis and bone fractures, as well as rheumatoid arthritis.