Food for Joint Health: What You Should Know
A good diet for joint health incorporates foods that reduce inflammation in order to prevent future ailments and premature wear. In addition, it limits the intake of some ingredients that could worsen the condition.
Nutrition plays a key role in our health. For that reason, we should adopt a diet plan that maintains and optimizes joint health before ailments that lead to wear and tear can make an appearance. But what should be a part of this diet?
A perfect diet for joint health involves increasing your consumption of foods that favors cartilage, muscles, and bones.
On the other hand, keep in mind that every person has nutritional requirements according to their age, weight, and health. However, there are general rules in regard to how to prevent and optimize joint health starting at an early age.
What Kind of Food is Good for Joint Health?
There are many factors that can affect the development and good functioning of joints. Firstly, aging is the main cause. However, bad habits, trauma, and poor nutrition will accelerate joint decay.
For this reason, you must ensure an optimal intake of essential nutrients that will lower the chance of inflammatory processes. Likewise, design your diet to protect your cartilage, wear of which can cause rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis.
The design of a diet for joint health, you should keep in mind several objectives:
- To begin with, the diet should help maintain a healthy weight. This is because an excess of weight and/or obesity worsen joints.
- In addition, it should improve blood circulation in order to reduce inflammation.
- Also, it should decrease the level of acidity in the body by supplying alkaline ingredients to it.
- In addition, it should maximize the supply of required nutrients that are often reduced due to arthritis.
- Finally, it should limit fluid retention by lowering sodium consumption.
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Foods to Avoid
The intake of foods that contain too many purines, uric acid, and saturated fats should be kept to a bare minimum. Because the absorption of these substances accelerate the joint health deterioration and drastically worsens it.
Foods to keep at arms length are:
- Red meats, sausages, smoked meats,
- Any internal organ of an animal,
- Pasteurized foods,
- Anything that comes out of a deceivingly pretty, colorful, printed package,
- Refined sugars and grains,
- Coffee and naturally caffeinated drinks,
- Bottled “energy” or “sports” drinks (don’t consume these at all),
- Alcoholic beverages.
Healthy Foods to Consume in Moderation
Unfortunately, you have to also moderate your intake of certain healthy foods due to their oxalate content, because this substance worsens inflammation.
- Cocoa powder
- Wheat germ
A diet plan for joint health should have many healthy ingredients in it. Also, it should contain few calories in order to be able to promote weight loss because this reduces inflammation. Luckily, there’s a wide variety of options for tasty meals that are balanced.
Recommended foods include:
- Fatty fish such as salmon, sardine or tuna (which contain omega 3),
- Extra virgin olive oil (cold pressed),
- Seeds and flax oil,
- Rapeseed oil,
- Pecans, hazelnuts, and sunflower seeds,
- Sesame seeds,
- Quinoa and amaranth,
- Fresh vegetables (except the ones mentioned above),
- Fruits rich in water,
- Grains and legumes: lentils, chickpeas, beans, brown rice, quinoa…
- Herbs and spices.
Diet Tips for Joint Health
Overall, a good diet for joint health should follow some easy principles of basic nutrition.
Limit Your Salt Intake
Foods that contain too much sodium can increase fluid retention. Therefore, because levels of inflammation affect joint health, too much salt will lead to pain and fatigue.
Drink Plenty of Water
Next, drinking enough fluids throughout the day help protect the cartilage against premature wear.
This tissue is responsible for covering the ends of the bones so that the joints move smoothly. Therefore, if they deteriorate, inflammation and pain increase.
Increase Your Intake of Omega 3 Fatty Acids
Eating blue fish twice a week helps to obtain good doses of Omega 3 fatty acids. Overall, its adequate assimilation prevents and decreases inflammation, since it helps to produce prostaglandins.
Eat Legumes 3 Times a Week
Furthermore, legumes are an interesting source of complex carbohydrates and vegetable proteins. For this reason, try consuming them at least 3 times a week to maintain optimal energy expenditure.
As if that wasn’t enough, legumes also help maintain good muscle and joint health.
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Eat Five Meals a Day
Instead of eating three hearty meals, translate them into five moderate meals. This maintains your metabolism at a good pace and prevents weight gain. In addition, you’ll feel full and less fatigued.
In conclusion, in order to improve your joint health through your diet, it’s important to know which foods to choose.