Tips And Common Questions About Joint Nutrition

Many of us have experienced joint pain, some might disappear after a while, and some might become chronic. Joint pain is irritating, it limits you from enjoying your hobbies, doing normal activities, or even affecting your sleep.

Arthritis is a chronic condition of joints; the main trigger involves inflammation. The most common form of arthritis is Osteoarthritis (OA), especially in older people due to the tissues in the joint breaking down over time.

However, it’s not just the older adults who are affected. Experts now know that many factors besides age are involved in this issue[1]. The diagnosed with osteoarthritis are mostly when people are older (about half of those over 65 have it to some degree), but it might have been a long-existing issue that is considered a normal part of aging. The truth is that you can reduce the risk of Osteoarthritis while you are young by eating the right foods and exercising regularly[2].

1. Is Arthritis Preventable?

Although you can't always prevent arthritis, there are ways to reduce the risk and delay the potential chance of certain types of arthritis. Stay active, maintain a healthy weight, avoid injuries, and build strong muscles and bones are all ways to support joint health and minimize risks.

2. Does Sugar Cause Joint Pain?

Yes. Sugar, especially processed sugar can trigger cytokine in the body, this inflammatory marker is most likely to aggravate inflammatory conditions, causing joint pain or worsening symptoms of arthritis.

When enjoyed occasionally, sweet fruit and 100% fruit juice with no added sugar can be part of a healthy diet. Fruit juice should not be consumed daily because it’s high in sugar, which may lead to various health issues, including increased inflammation[3].

3. Is Gluten Bad for Joint Pain?

Yes. Gluten from wheat, rye, or barley may promote inflammation, affecting the body's soft tissue and sometimes causing joint pain. According to a study from the Oxford Journal of Rheumatology, 41 percent of the studied group suffering from rheumatoid arthritis feel improvement when switched to gluten-free diets[4].

4. Does Dehydration Cause Joint Pain?

Yes. About 70 to 80% of your joint cartilage consists of water[5], it’s an essential component of synovial fluid in the joints. This fluid is like lubrication for the joints, keeping them safe and moving comfortably. Dehydration may increase the risk of chronic inflammation, over time, this can negatively impact overall health, even leading to chronic health conditions, including joint issues.

5. What Food Should I Avoid?

Cutting back on foods that promote inflammation is a good place to start with. According to the US National Arthritis Foundation, foods that are linked with inflammation and joint pain include sugar, aspartame (artificial sweetener), saturated fats, trans fats, high levels of omega-6 fatty acids, refined carbohydrates, MSG, gluten/casein, alcohol, and processed meat[6][7].

6. Should I Eat Oily Fish?

Making fish your main protein and getting adequate omega-3s are important to improving your diet for arthritis. As mentioned previously, excessive amounts of omega-6 can promote inflammation, so we need more omega-3s to help regulate it, keeping a healthy balance of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids.

7. Are Legumes Good for People With Arthritis?

Yes. Legumes are rich in essential nutrients such as fibre, vitamins (such as folate and B vitamins), minerals (such as magnesium, potassium, and iron), and antioxidants. These nutrients can support overall health and well-being, which is also important for managing arthritis. Beans and lentils also have strong anti-inflammatory properties which can be beneficial in alleviating arthritis symptoms[8].

8. What Vitamins Are Good for Joints?

There are several well-known ingredients and supplements commonly associated with promoting joint health and reducing joint discomfort, such as glucosamine, chondroitin, MSM, omega-3, turmeric, and collagen. These ingredients are often used as part of a comprehensive approach to managing joint health[9] [10]. Let’s look at each of them in detail.

  • Glucosamine and chondroitin:
Glucosamine and chondroitin are both naturally found in cartilage, they are the carbohydrate substances in connective tissue. There are meta-analyses suggesting both glucosamine and chondroitin may help manage OA. The two ingredients are usually taken in conjunction and are believed to have a synergistic effect on joint health. Make sure you look for Glucosamine Sulfate which is the effective form of glucosamine (the pure glucosamine sulfate molecule).
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  • MSM (Methylsulfonylmethane):
MSM is a sulfur-containing compound that is thought to help reduce joint inflammation and pain. Oral supplements with MSM may help to support joint conditions such as discomfort movement. It’s often used in combination with glucosamine and chondroitin.
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  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids:
  • Omega-3 fatty acids, found in fatty fish like salmon and supplements like fish oil, have anti-inflammatory properties that can benefit joint health. They may help reduce joint pain and stiffness.
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    • Green Lipped Mussels:
    Found only in the pristine waters of the New Zealand coastline, Green Lipped Mussels are one of nature’s most powerful superfoods, containing a range of bioactive components for joint health. It is rich in Glycosaminoglycans (GAGs), Omega-3 fatty acids, and Chondroitin, studies have shown that Green Lipped Mussels have indicative supporting benefits for managing joint pain and mobility and assist your body in managing inflammation.
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    • Turmeric/Curcumin:
    Turmeric, a spice, contains curcumin, a compound with potent anti-inflammatory properties. Some people take curcumin supplements to help manage joint pain and inflammation. We use HydroCurc® Curcuma longa extract in the product Ach-Eze, which contains over 90% curcuminoids delivering concentrated actives. This form of curcumin has been used in many clinical studies, the statistics indicate that it’s effective for improving both rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.
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    • Undenatured Type-II collagen:
    Undenatured type-II collagen is made from type-II collagen. This is the main structural protein found in cartilage, the flexible connective tissue that keeps joint motion fluid by coating the surfaces of the bones in our joints and cushioning bones against impact. Supplementing Undenatured Type-II collagen may help reduce collagen degradation in joints, supporting long-term joint health. There are clinical studies indicate that taking undenatured type-II collagen daily is statically more effective than taking glucosamine and chondroitin.
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  • PEA (palmitoylethanolamide):
  • PEA is produced in the body in response to pain or inflammation. It has gained a great deal of attention over recent years due to clinical studies that have shown it is effective for various chronic pain conditions. Multiple studies have indicated the benefits of PEA for reducing joint pain. In a double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical study with 111 participants with mild to moderate knee osteoarthritis, participants received either 300mg PEA, 600mg PEA, or a placebo each day, for 8 weeks. There was a significant reduction in total WOMAC score (a standardised measure of osteoarthritis severity) for both the 300mg and 600mg PEA groups, and specifically a reduction in pain and stiffness in both groups.
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