Arthritis is one of the most common ailments experienced as you age. It is also one of the most misunderstood. There are over a hundred different varieties, each with many of their own symptoms and mitigating factors. There is still no complete understanding of what causes arthritis, but progress has been made in discovering what behaviors can increase your risk.
Some arthritis risk factors can’t be changed no matter what you do. For instance, women are more likely to suffer then men and there appears to be a genetic factor in some varieties of the painful condition. The good news is, however, that there are things you can do to help lessen your chances of developing arthritis as you age. It is important, however, to start when you are young, while joints are still strong. Let’s take a look at some of the things you can do now to help lessen your chances of arthritis.
Repeated sports injuries, especially to the same areas, can increase the onset of certain types of arthritis. To lessen irritation from this source, it is important to wear required safety gear when playing sports that are known for being physically intensive. In addition to safety gear, learning the correct methods to do things like lifting weights will help prevent damage that may not show up until you start aging.
Maintain a Healthy Weight
You’ve heard of all the trouble being overweight can cause to things like your heart and blood pressure, but few are aware that overweight women are likely to experience knee arthritis at a rate four times greater than that of women of normal weight. Extra weight doesn’t even have to be excessive to cause damage. A mere ten pounds adds anywhere from thirty to sixty extra pounds of pressure with each step you take.
Vitamin D and More
It is estimated that over half of Americans are lacking the correct amount of Vitamin D in their systems. Studies have indicated this lack of Vitamin D, which helps your body absorb calcium, is closely related to bone health. With bones weakened, the joints are forced to exert more work, weakening them. In addition to making sure you get enough Vitamin D, eating fish that is high in Omega-3 acid two or three times a weak tends to reduce the instances of arthritis. Finally, in the nutrition area, it is important to drink plenty of water. Staying properly hydrated enables your body to maintain its natural healing properties and keeps your joints lubricated, reducing wear and tear on them.
Consider Taking Glucosamine
This supplement has been shown to slow down the normal deterioration of joints. While it does not prevent arthritis, it can delay the onset of the worst symptoms. Taking Glucosamine along with the other preventive measures listed here can greatly improve your chances of avoiding arthritis longer.
Make Exercise A Priority
Exercise, when done appropriately, is one of your greatest tools in keeping joints from becoming stiff and succumbing to deterioration. voiding high-impact exercises, such as running, and opting for low-impact exercises such as swimming, bike riding and walking will create less stress on your joints. Alternate this exercise with strengthening exercises to get an all-around benefit.
Nothing at this point can guarantee you won’t develop arthritis as you age, but by following the above tips from as early an age as possible you will greatly reduce the chances. Preventing the onset of arthritis is best done from as early as your 20’s or 30’s, but making healthy changes at any time will be of benefit. It is much easier to begin a healthy routine before symptoms arise than to try and deal with pain once arthritis sets in.