By Wellness Author
The meaning of the term Arthritis is ‘inflammation of joints’. Inflammation is characterised by soreness, redness, pain, and swelling. In arthritis, inflammation typically occurs in the joints, connective tissues, and tissues surrounding the joints. This is irrespective of its type.
Osteoarthritis occurs due to wear and tear as a person ages. While rheumatoid arthritis is autoimmune. Other minor types of arthritis are the ones that are observed in children (Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis), GOUT, and infectious arthritis.
Arthritis is common in India. More than 15% of the population is affected by it. Also, the number is rising.
The common question asked by people is regarding arthritis prevention. This is not completely possible. But through lifestyle changes, one can minimise the risk of having it.
The easiest lifestyle modification for arthritis prevention is choosing what to eat. It is also important to know the foods to avoid to prevent arthritis. Colourful and fresh food on the plate includes more vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Include the following anti-inflammatory food to reduce pain and soreness:
• Eat a plant-based diet that contains green leafy vegetables, lettuce, spinach, broccoli, kale, and cabbage. They reduce the triggers of inflammation.
• Include fresh fruits like citrus fruits, berries, and cherries.
• Eat more whole grains, millet, oats, and quinoa. They have fibres.
• Vitamin D and calcium are necessary for healthy bones and joints. Have an adequate intake of the necessary minerals and vitamins.
• Beans, legumes, and nuts give adequate protein. It helps build healthy muscles. Have them in your diet.
• Use plant-based oils like olive oil, sunflower oil, or canola oil for cooking.
• Have more foods rich in Omega-3 fatty acids such as linseed, walnuts, salmon, and sardine.
• Drink plenty of water and keep your body hydrated.
Try to avoid the following food products as they are pro-inflammatory. They may trigger a cascade of inflammatory reactions. These may eventually cause arthritis. Furthermore, most of these food items lack nutritional value. They also promote unhealthy weight gain. Here are the foods to avoid with arthritis:
• Carbonated and caffeinated beverages.
• Red meat.
• Refined flour.
• Fast food and processed food.
• Bakery items.
• High saturated fat and trans-fatty acids.
• Sugary foods.
• Foods that increase uric acid levels in joints.
Moderate physical activity helps prevent stiffness and joint pain. Remember to do moderate-intensity exercises for arthritis in the correct way to prevent any injury. Injuries to the joint increase the risk of the development of osteoarthritis. Here are suggestions for which exercise for arthritis is safe:
• Go for low-impact activities such as a 30-minute daily walk, cycling, and swimming.
• Do light aerobics.
• Do muscle-strengthening exercises for arthritis.
• Light dancing and gardening will keep joints functioning and healthy.
• Start slow and pay attention to your body tolerance.
An increase in weight will put stress on your knees, ankles, and other joints. This can trigger arthritis flare-ups. Watch your weight. Weight loss will prevent arthritis in the following ways:
• Losing weight will ease the pressure on the joints
• Reduce inflammation and pain.
• Slow down the degeneration of cartilage.
Yoga is the most effective and safe way to introduce physical activity to your sedentary lifestyle. Doing yoga regularly under a trained instructor can help prevent arthritis symptoms as follows:
• Yoga keeps your muscles flexible in a gentle way without putting stress on your joints.
• Yoga helps people build muscle strength and improve balance.
• It builds a mind-and-body connection. It relaxes the mind so that stress levels are reduced.
• Regular yoga practice improves your sleep quality. This helps to reduce inflammation levels in the body.
Take the following measures to prevent arthritis:
• Avoid any exercise or risk that may injure joints and trigger arthritis symptoms.
• Wear protective gear. Avoid repetitive actions that cause joint pain.
Those who smoke are more vulnerable to developing arthritis and other inflammatory diseases. Smoking causes breathing problems. This makes physical activity difficult.
Having diabetes increases the risk of developing arthritis. Higher blood sugar levels than normal increase the stiffness of cartilage. This makes joint movement difficult.
Remember, arthritis is a slow and progressive disease. It is best to communicate with the doctor to know more about how to prevent arthritis. Medical advice with healthy changes in routine will help arthritis prevention and avoid damage to the joints.