Our body’s joints are what make our everyday and athletic movements possible and pain-free. They help us walk, run, stretch, bend, type, sit, stand, and lift things. Keeping joints healthy and flexible is a top priority not just for athletes, but for anyone who wants to have the maximum range of mobility.
The cartilaginous tissues that cushion our bones can be worn down by many stimuli, including weight gain and normal aging. When that wear and tear goes unchecked, it can make even the smallest activities ten times more difficult.
Whether you’re seeking recovery supplements for arthritis, recovering from an injury, or trying to keep yourself at peak performance, taking care of your joints is one of the most important things you can do. Read on for 10 tips to improve and protect your joint health.
How to Keep Your Joints Healthy
Choose Low-Impact Activities
When you’re suffering from joint pain, it’s tempting to quit exercising altogether. However, experts agree that staying active is one of the most important things you can do to protect your joint health in the long run. Opt for low-impact activities like walking, biking, or swimming to take pressure off of your knees, back and hips.
- Avoid high heels: High heels are one of the biggest offenders when it comes to sabotaging your joint health. Wearing high heels puts abnormal pressure on the joint under the big toe. Regular use can lead to bone spurs and cartilage loss.
If you can’t bring yourself to ditch high heels altogether, opt for a lower look. Wearing a 3 inch heel stresses your foot seven times more than wearing a 1 inch heel does.
- Eat More Dark, Leafy Greens: Eating food like spinach, kale, or chard is an easy way to incorporate joint support in your diet. Dark, leafy greens are rich in iron, calcium, magnesium, and some of the most important vitamins for joints: vitamins C, K, and A. Adding leafy greens into stir fry, omelets, and more is a delicious way to get the nutrients you need to reduce inflammation, improve your digestion, and support joint health.
Drink Green Tea
Green tea has long been regarded as a healthy beverage, because of its antioxidant properties and polyphenols. A recent study shows that one particular polyphenol, epigallocatechin 3-gallate (EGCG), may reduce the effects of rheumatoid arthritis. EGCG, the active ingredient in green tea, is up to 100 times more potent in antioxidant properties than Vitamins C or E, two well-known vitamins for joint pain. The study suggests that drinking more green tea may help protect your cartilage and bones.
Collagen is one of the key ingredients to maintaining healthy joints and elastic skin. The body normally manufactures collagen from amino acids, strengthening your skin, hair, and joints. However, aging, smoking, and sun overexposure leads to reduced collagen production. Arthritis further erodes the collagen in your joints, destroying it faster than your body can replace it. Recent studies have shown statistically significant results for athletes taking collagen in reducing joint pain and promoting joint health.
When choosing a joint pain supplement, look for a safe, potent option made with the highest-quality all-natural ingredients, like you’ll find with Revive AE’s Collagen Powder. This powerful formula is made with patented TRAACS Magnesium and marine collagen peptides found in whitefish. Taking Revive AE’s Collagen Powder can help improve joint integrity, promote healthy skin and nails, and combat the effects of aging.
Stretch During the Day
Sitting at a computer screen all day or spending hours on your feet? Neither option is sustainable for healthy joints. Take a break around every 30 minutes from sitting or standing. Certain yoga stretches, like the bridge stretch or child’s pose may also help reduce tension and ward off stiffness. Doing regular yoga can even reduce pain from arthritis and improve joint function.
Maintain a Healthy Weight
Your knees and hips bear most of your body’s weight. Obesity increases your risk for knee-based arthritis by four or five times, one study suggests. Luckily, getting closer to a healthier weight has a pronounced effect. Losing just 10 pounds (if you’re overweight) has been shown to slow the progression of knee osteoarthritis by 50 percent. Be sure to calculate your body weight and use the information to craft the best path forward for yourself.
One of the best supplements for knee pain is something you likely already have in the freezer. If you have a strain or a sprain, most doctors and physical therapists recommend rest, ice, compression, and elevation (“RICE”) as a go-to treatment. Place a cold compress over a thin cloth on the injured area. Leave the ice on for about 20 minutes before removing. After the first 48 hours of a new injury, or for chronically stiff joints, heat can be used to increase circulation and ease soreness or pain.
Warm Up and Cool Down After Exercising
Staying physically active is one of the best ways to keep your joints healthy. However, not warming up properly can lead to injuries, which, when left untreated, are a major risk factor for arthritis. Start slow at practice or the gym. Never “play through the pain”; if you’re injured, stop and treat it. Taking time to warm up and cool down after exercising is one of the simplest ways to protect your joints.
Your joints’ connective cartilage is 80% water. When you become dehydrated, the body responds by pulling water from those soft tissues, as a reserve source of hydration. Dehydration can lead to weaker cartilage, which means less cushioning for your joints. Try switching from soda to water, and listen to your body’s cues about when to drink.
Increase your pain relief factor. Walmart and other big-box chains aren’t the only places to turn to for quality joint vitamins and arthritis supplements. Some of the best choices to make you can do at home, like practicing yoga and maintaining a healthy weight. Others you can accomplish with a quality collagen supplement, like from Revive AE. Start taking steps to protect your joints and feel the difference with every motion.