With age, the cartilage, which cushions the joints often deteriorates. In addition, the production of synovial fluid, which lubricates the joints, slows down. This can lead to the condition, called osteoarthritis, when bones rub together and cause distress with every twist or bend.
If you were like the Tin Man in the Wizard of Oz, you could use your oilcan to lubricate your joints whenever you started to feel a little creaky.
The Arthritis Foundation and the National Center for Disease Prevention offer the following suggestions for a lifetime of joint health:
Maintain your ideal body weight
Being overweight increases your risk of joint problems because of the increased and often unbalanced pressure on the joints. For instance, every extra pound you gain puts four times the stress on your knees. Research indicates that losing even a few pounds may cut your risk of developing osteoarthritis of the knee by half.
Regular, moderate exercise can reduce joint pain and stiffness, build strong muscle around the joints, strengthen joints and ligaments, and increase flexibility and endurance. Swimming, water aerobics, walking (on flat surfaces) and tai chi all benefit your joints by offering a full range of movement. Strength training (lifting weights) also is beneficial, as it creates denser bones and builds stronger muscles, which then help stabilize and protect your joints.
Use good body mechanics
Joint health is affected by how you use your body. Your posture when sitting or standing and your position when you move determine how much strain is put on your joints.
Nourish your joints by eating a high-fiber, low-fat diet. Be sure to include omega-3 fats (found in cold-water fish), which provide natural lubrication for your joints. Vitamin and mineral supplements are important, too, especially the antioxidant vitamins A, C and E, which help repair connective tissue and promote joint regeneration; and the minerals calcium, manganese, chromium and zinc.
Additionally, the nutritional supplements glucosamine and chondroitin have been shown to stimulate healthy joints.
Glucosamine Forte is a special formulation of several natural ingredients that have been found to contribute to joint health.
Glucosamine stimulates the body’s manufacture of collagen, the protein portion of the fibrous substance that holds joints together and provides a shock-absorbing cushion called articular cartilage – the white smooth surface, which covers the ends of body joints – such as those in the wrist, fingers, toes, ankles, knees, hips and between the discs of the spine. Glucosamine is essential for the connective tissue formation. It stimulates the production of glycosaminoglycans and proteoglycans, two essential building blocks of cartilage.
It is recommended to take glucosamine for a long period of time – at least 8 weeks due to its gradual effect.
Chondroitin sulfate is synergistic with glucosamine. Chondroitin sulfate is a major constituent of cartilage, providing structure, holding water and nutrients, and allowing other molecules to move through cartilage – an important property, as there is no blood supply to cartilage. Chondroitin sulfate appears to block the enzymes that can destroy crucial cartilage tissue. Preliminary findings indicate that chondroitin may increase joint mobility and slow cartilage loss. In degenerative joint disease, such as osteoarthritis, there is a loss of chondroitin sulfate as the cartilage erodes. Studies indicate that chondroitin sulfate may promote regeneration of cartilage and healing of bone, which is consistent with the fact that the majority of glycosaminoglycans found in bone consist of chondroitin sulfate.
With chondroitin use, joint function appears to improve and pain to diminish in people with osteoarthritis, thus significally improving their quality of life.
Devil’s Claw (Harpagophytum procumbens) is a native plant of southern Africa. Numerous tribes native to southern Africa have used devil’s claw for a wide variety of conditions, ranging from gastrointestinal difficulties to arthritic conditions. Devil’s claw has been widely used in Europe as a treatment for arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, reduce joint pain, joint support.
Devil’s claw contains three important constituents belonging to the iridoid glycoside family: harpagoside, harpagide, and procumbide. Harpagoside and other iridoid glycosides found in the plant may be responsible for the herb’s anti-inflammatory and analgesic actions, reduce joint pain.
Shark cartilage, which contains calcium, phosphorus and a family of complex carbohydrates and proteins, has been shown to reduce inflammation and joint pain, and decrease general wear and tear on joints.
Per 1 capsule:
Glucosamine Hydrochloride – 300.0 mg,
Chondroitin Sulfate – 150.0 mg,
proprietary blend – 139.0 mg,
Devil’s claw (Harpagophytum procumbens) root powder, shark cartilage extrac
Glucosamine stimulates the body’s manufacture of collagen, the protein portion of the fibrous substance that holds joints together and provides a shock-absorbing cushion called articular cartilage
Chondroitin sulfate is a major constituent of cartilage, providing structure, holding water and nutrients, and allowing other molecules to move through cartilage – an important property, as there is no blood supply to cartilage.
Devil’s Claw (Harpagophytum procumbens) is a native plant of southern Africa, has been widely used in Europe as a treatment for arthritis.
Shark cartilage, which contains calcium, phosphorus and a family of complex carbohydrates and proteins, has been shown to reduce inflammation and pain, and decrease general wear and tear on joints.
As a dietary supplement take 1 capsule twice daily with a large glass of water.