Arthritis. It’s not just your grandparent’s ailment anymore. Arthritis does commonly affect the elderly, but can also affect younger adults and children, and can present itself in one’s body through the contraction of Lyme Disease, autoimmune disorders, or age. Managing this widespread rheumatic disease (1) affecting the connective tissues and joints in the body can seem like a daunting task, but with knowledge of arthritis ever expanding, we’ve learned about some fantastic ways to ease your arthritis symptoms naturally through lifestyle and dietary changes. Read on to start trying out some tips today!
Joint Vitality by Pure Vitality is a stellar product currently on the market to help manage joint pain. It doesn’t just treat symptoms of arthritis, but rather works to get to the root of the cause of the disease and treat it more comprehensively with a multi-pronged approach. Joint Vitality focuses on bringing together nutritional support that aids the body in absorbing all of the ingredients in the supplement. Joint Vitality also helps improve circulation, rebuild cartilage, increase free radical control, and soothe pain via anti-inflammatory ingredients like Tumeric and Boswellia Gum extract.
2. Eat More Fish
Certain types of fish are rich in Omega 3 fatty acids which may help to reduce inflammation (2) by stopping the production of pro-inflammatory enzymes in their tracks. Salmon, Herring, and Sardines are some great sources of fatty acids. Some plants also contain Omega 3 fatty acids, so, it is possible to also get some of the benefits from omega-3’s through plants, but fish is a better source because they specifically contain DHA & EPA, known as long-chain Omega-3’s that doing the heavy lifting in the anti-inflammatory department. Eating fish even twice a week may have the ability to decrease the pain you may be feeling from arthritis. However, not all fish are great options, and may do more harm than good. Stay away from any types of fish that may contain high levels of mercury and make sure to always look for wild caught, organic fish when you’re shopping. If eating fish isn’t exactly your cup of tea, consider taking a fish oil supplement instead. There are plenty of options on the market now that are flavored with lemon or strawberry to help them go down a little easier.
3. Green Tea
Speaking of cup of tea, the health benefits of this ancient drink have been touted for centuries. Green Tea (3) contains a powerful antioxidant in the way of EGCG (epigallocatechin-3-gallate) that blocks the production of molecules that cause joint damage and also helps to reduce inflammation. Drinking a few cups of this a day may help ease discomfort from rheumatoid arthritis.
One of the best things about Pure Vitality, is that they always seek to treat a problem from its root instead of masking the symptom. Pure Vitality Muscle & Joint Cream is part of a comprehensive joint health program (see Joint Vitality back at #1). Key ingredients are MSM, an organic sulfur compound that’s naturally derived during the earth’s rain cycle, Wintergreen, Peppermint, Lavender and Hypericum Perforatum oils which help to relieve tension, pain, and enhance circulation. Those are just to a few of their beneficial properties! Additionally, Muscle & Joint cream contains herbs such as Arnica & Calendula, which both help to speed up recovery time. When used together, these ingredients become a power combo to fight arthritis pain, rather than individually sourcing each ingredient and using them on their own with a lesser impact.
5. Topical Herbs
We just talked about the benefit of herbs such as Calendula and Arnica in Pure Vitality’s Muscle & Joint Cream, but the buck doesn’t stop there. There are many other herbs that can be helpful in treating various forms of arthritis. Aloe, Eucalyptus, Willow Bark & Thunder God Vine (4) are all herbs that may be used topically to help ease arthritis pain. You should check with your doctor about dosage and sourcing specifically for Willow Bark & Thunder God Vine as they are particularly strong and may not be suitable for long-term usage, and may have adverse effects if they are/are not derived from a specific part of the plant.
Thermotherapy is the alternation of hot and cold therapies to reduce joint swelling and pain. This form of treatment doesn’t provide long-term benefits but rather immediate relief for those times you can’t wait for oral treatments to kick in. You should treat the inflamed area with heat initially to help reduce muscle tension, which will improve your range of motion and help get your muscles limber for the day, so trying gentle heat in the morning may be a good place to start with this therapy. Heating pads, hot water bottles, paraffin wax bath, a heated blanket or even warming your clothes in the dryer before getting dressed, are all gentle ways of applying heat to inflamed areas. Next, you should apply a cold treatment. Cold packs, frozen foods, gel packs shaped to specific body parts, cool bath (not cold), and sprays such as Cryoderm and Biofreeze will do the trick. When using hot or cold therapy, be sure to keep an eye on your skin to monitor for any burning or freezing. You don’t want the heat source to be too hot or the cold source to be too cold and you don’t want to apply some of these items directly to your skin. Wrap cold packs and hot water bottles with a towel before applying them to the affected area. Think warm vs. cool rather than hot vs. cold.
7. Foods to Eat
Again, anything with Omega-3 fatty acids is a winner in the dietary book when it comes to arthritis. To expand on this a bit more, long chain omega 3’s, such as those found in fish are more beneficial than short chain omega-3’s, such as flax seeds and walnuts, because the body needs to convert the short chain omegas into long-chain omegas, so getting right to the point if you will, is a more effective option. Modern diets can have an overabundance of Omega 6 fatty acids and sometimes the imbalance between the Omega 6 and 3’s is enough to cause inflammation (5). Olive oil is a great Omega-6 reducer and taking it in spoonfuls or cooking with it at an appropriate temperature as to not cook out the beneficial elements, can be helpful in treating arthritis. Colorful fruits and vegetables are another way to treat arthritis as they are rich in antioxidants such as flavonoids and carotenoids. Bell peppers, broccoli, mango, oranges and strawberries are great options as they are also rich in Vitamin C, another powerful antioxidant.
8. Foods NOT to Eat
Lay off the sugar, first and foremost. It only provides empty calories and increases your blood sugar levels which can negatively affect inflammation. Too much red meat and dairy can also cause inflammation and should be avoided due to a bacteria called MAP (6) that is often found in both that can trigger rheumatoid arthritis. Cutting back on your sodium intake can also help to improve arthritis symptoms. People suffering from arthritis, high blood pressure, kidney disease and more should limit their intake to 1,500 mg/day (7) or half a teaspoon. For perspective, the average American takes in about 3,400 mg of sodium a day. Making sure you read the labels of the food you buy, using spice instead of salt, and eating out less are some simple ways to be more in control of your sodium intake. People who have arthritis, may be more prone to heart disease, so staying away from sodium, as well as Saturated and trans fats that raise cholesterol is a good move as well. A safe number is no more than 20g of saturated fat a day in a 2,000 calorie diet (8), and you should try not to consume any trans fats as they are mostly found in manufactured food and shouldn’t ideally be consumed anyway.
It may seem impossible and like one of the last things you want to do when you’re experiencing a flare up, but exercising and arthritis go hand in hand. If you’re new to exercising, starting off with some easy, low-intensity moves are best. Therapeutic exercises, or those recommended by your doctor, are a great place to start in terms of increasing physical activity, especially if you haven’t been active in a while and are experiencing extreme stiffness and lack of mobility in a specific area. Low-intensity recreational exercises can range from walking, to leisurely bike riding, cross-country skiing and jogging. Recreational exercises done in conjunction with therapeutic exercises can yield very positive results. Exercising at a competitive or elite level is generally not recommended, as the intensity that is required with those types of sports can contribute to inflammation and make arthritis symptoms worse.
This ancient form of traditional Chinese medicine has been used to treat a variety of ailments for centuries. Acupuncture uses very fine needles to stimulate energy along meridians, or pathways in your body, in hopes of correcting imbalances of energy in your chi (9), or your life-giving energy. Studies (10) have shown that it can lower levels of chemicals in your body that are linked to inflammation and that the difference in symptoms between having acupuncture and not having acupuncture treatments was large; however that the difference between simulated and actual acupuncture was small. Either way, it’s worth a try!
Working to maintain a positive attitude and creating a network of support around you are also integral parts of treating arthritis, and really, any health, emotional, and physiological problems. Setting realistic goals for yourself is very important and a great place to start when it comes to treatment, as it can be overwhelming to not hit physical benchmarks we set for ourselves when working to live with or cure a disease such as arthritis (think walking 1 mile, versus running 5 miles after one week of exercise). Setting small, realistic goals will help you achieve bigger ones and help keep you in a positive frame of mind.
Fortunately, there are many options at your disposal when it comes to treating different forms of arthritis naturally; from lifestyle changes, to supplements, to diet and exercise. Pure Vitality wants to see you live your most vibrant life and offers a wide range of additional supplements to Joint Vitality and Muscle & Joint Cream; all of which can be found HERE.
Pure Vitality a natural supplement company based in an isolated village nestled against the snow-capped Southern Alps of New Zealand. We research health conditions thoroughly to discover the underlying root causes, find the most effective natural remedies, target the root causes rather than use a Band-Aid approach, use a multi-prong approach to fix the root causes from many directions and use high potency ingredients at scientifically supported amounts.