Our joints are important; they allow us to move freely and enjoy our greatest adventures. A restriction on these movements can be caused by joint pain, something that affects one third of adults. By making small changes to the food you eat, you can help fight inflammation, strengthen your bones and boost your immune system. The following foods can ease the symptoms of joint pain.
Cold-Water fish such as salmon, tuna, trout and mackerel are rich in omega-3. Fish oil is one of the best sources of this fatty acid as it can decrease the pain in tender or swollen joints. By adding more fish into your diet, it can minimise those aches and pains.
If you’re not a fan of fish, soybeans, chia seeds, tofu or edamame have the same inflammation fighting properties. Lower in fat, soybeans are packed with protein and fibre.
Spices and Herbs
Often found in Indian cuisine, turmeric and ginger are recognised for their anti-inflammatory benefits. You can add both of these to smoothies, eggs or sauces to include into a healthy balanced diet- not an excuse for endless Indian takeaways.
Low fat dairy products such as milk, yoghurt and cheese are packed full of calcium and vitamin D. Both increase bone strength but vitamin D is essential for absorbing the calcium and is additionally beneficial to boosting your immune system.
Leafy green vegetables are an alternative if dairy doesn’t agree with you.
These include broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts and kale. It is recommended to include these daily into your meals as they are loaded with vitamins, fibre and antioxidants that block the enzymes which cause joint pain and inflammation.
There is a reactive protein in your blood associated with heart disease, diabetes and arthritis. This can be reduced by eating foods such as oatmeal, brown rice and whole-gain cereals.
Anthocyanins have been found in cherries as well as other red and purple fruits such as strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and blackberries. All have a similar anti-inflammatory effect. Adding these to a bowl of whole grain cereal with yoghurt would be a joint healthy breakfast all round.
Garlic, onions and leeks contain a compound which limits cartilage-damaging enzymes. People who regularly eat foods from the allium family show fewer signs of early osteoarthritis.
Full of polyphenols and antioxidants, green tea is believed to reduce inflammation and slow cartilage damage. It contains an antioxidant that blocks the production of molecules causing joint damage in people suffering from forms of arthritis.
Lastly, consider reducing your intake of refined grains, sugars and red meats as these can reverse the effects and increase inflammation. Try to use natural sources when it comes to sugar by using honey, maple syrup and coconut sugar.