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Archive for the ‘Weight Loss’ Category

Get Up and Walk

December 7, 2016
Lifestyle Modification

    Walking Helps the Knees

Walking can hurt. However, it doesn’t cost much, can be done most places, and can be quite helpful.  Walking allows the knee to move through a normal range of motion with low impact on joints. You only need time and effort to go for a walk – this can also help you lose weight.  Your knee arthritis isn’t going to get better by itself.

Walk on an even surface like a track or treadmill.  Shopping malls provide stable walking conditions, as well as heat or air conditioning. Increase your distance or time as your knee grows stronger.  One step a t a time….



OA and Weight Loss

March 22, 2013

Just as gaining weight can lead to osteoarthritis, losing weight may treat it.

It is well known that obesity is bad for your knees.  No one would be surprised to hear that high body weight speeds up joint degradation, or that it increases knee pain.  While it is well documented that weight loss decreases the stress on the knee, and so reduces knee pain, recent research has shown that weight loss can do much more.

In a paper published in the Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, Dr. Koonce found that weight loss could reduce the need for knee replacements in the USA by up to 50%.  This means that weight loss alone could protect you from osteoarthritis so that you don’t need to risk surgical or pharmaceutical treatments, and can avoid months of therapy.

This research suggests that weight loss may be effective as a primary treatment method for addressing osteoarthritis of the knee.  And while a doctor may help you with your diet, you can do it yourself for free.  So why not add dieting and excersize to your routine and watch your pain disappear?



OA and Obesity

September 23, 2012

Obese individuals apply much more weight and stress to their knees.

Osteoarthritis is a degeneration of cartilage, leading to increased friction and decreased shock absorption in joint spaces.  It is unsurprising that osteoarthritis of the knee is often present in overweight or obese individuals, since they apply more stress to their  knees.  In fact, a recent article in the Huffington Post reports that just 10 pounds of excess body weight can produce 30-60 pounds of extra force on the knee.  This means that obesity can have an exaggerated effect on joints supporting body weight.

Knee osteoarthritis is particularly troublesome in obese individuals because the pain it causes can prevent them from exercising to return to a healthy body weight.  Osteoarthritis and obesity have a cyclical relationship, which means that they make each other worse in a descending spiral.  While exercise can still help people with osteoarthritis and obesity, it is most helpful before the symptoms are severe.  Recent work at the Johns Hopkins arthritis center suggests that the risk of developing osteoarthritis may be reduced by 50% for every 11 pounds lost.

The connection between worsening obesity and osteoarthritis cannot be overstated, but it can be avoided.  By committing to weight loss and healthy exercise, individuals at risk for developing osteoarthritis can improve their health in the long run.

 



Walking

August 5, 2012

Mall walkers

When suffering from knee pain caused by osteoarthritis simple tasks like walking can be agonizing. However, walking is a great low impact exercise which can be done almost anywhere. Walking allows the knee to move through a normal range of motion with low impact on joints. Walking is easy to do, requires only your time and effort and can also help you lose weight.

It is important to walk on an even surface such as a track or treadmill. However, if you’re looking for a heated or air conditioned, flat surface, without a gym membership a shopping mall might be a perfect solution.  Malls provide stable walking conditions, heat or air conditioning and even a little window shopping. You can increase your distance or time as your knee grows stronger and more accustomed to your routine.

 



Exercise Goals

July 30, 2012

Share your exercise goals.

More than 10 million Americans suffer from knee osteoarthritis. Knee pain can cause a lack of mobility resulting in depression, weight gain, feelings of helplessness and difficulty participating in daily activities. By setting goals like increasing your daily or weekly exercise time, or add stretching, you can radically improve your quality of life. Goals can be tailored for each individual and provide a basis for achieving and monitoring your progress.

Knowing your body and its limits is also very important. You know your body better than anyone. It is much better to rest and take it easy than to push yourself and risk further injuries. Allowing your body to adequately recover allows you to increase the duration and intensity of your exercise routines.  Set exercise goals and keep a close eye on your body in order to safely improve knee function.



Osteoarthritis linked with obesity

 

Studies have shown that knee osteoarthritis is 4 to 5 times more prominent in obese individuals. Knee osteoarthritis is caused by the breakdown of cartilage in a joint. By losing weight and reducing the stress placed on the joint, it is possible to slow the cartilage destruction. For every 10lbs of weight lost it is possible to reduce the strain on the joint by 30-50lbs.  Weight loss can cause a staggering reduction in pressure and can decrease knee pain immensely.

Low impact exercise routines reduce the joint stress associated with body weight, while allowing you to lose weight. Start slow with a workout that challenges you, yet does not cause pain. Proper diet and exercise can provide the necessary jumpstart to a knee pain free lifestyle.

 



Buffalo Wings

Buffalo Wings

I’m overweight and my knees hurt.  I know what I have to do.  I know what I should do.  And sometimes I do.  Sometimes I eat right, and exercise, and stretch.  And sometimes I watch football, drink beer, and eat buffalo wings.  I have a weakness for wings, and my knees pay the price.

My knees aren’t that bad, and I’m not that overweight.  Yet.  But my clothes are tight, and I “feel” my knees more than I am accustomed to.  I understand that being overweight leads to knee pain.  For every extra ten pounds I carry the stress my knees feel increases by 40 pounds.  An extra 40 pounds of stress every step I take.   I am 40 years old and I know that the more stress I put on my knees now will diminish my quality of life down the road.

Im trying something new.  Snacking with a purpose.  Instead of waiting until cravings start distracting me, I eat some fruit, or vegetables or almonds around 3:00pm when I get hungry, sleepy, and crabby.  I’m sure all three are related.  But the healthy snacks help chase away all three.  Also I’m less likely to go back for seconds (and dare I admit sometimes thirds) at dinner.  I’ll let you know if the new strategy works.

I know fruit and vegetables aren’t as instantly gratifying as anything fried, but I work in the arthritis field.  I know what my future holds if I continue doing what I’m doing.



Cold Water Fish

Salmon

Salmon contains an anti-inflammatory fat called omega-3.  Omega 3 Fatty acids have been shown to help with conditions such as coronary disease, cancer, rheumatoid and osteoarthritis.  Wild salmon (from Alaska) is believed to contain more Omega 3s than farm raised salmon.

So salmon instead of steak the next time you’re out.  Your knees, heart, and waist line will all thank you.



Salad

Salad

Sigh.  Salad.  I know.  Every time it comes to changing your diet salads are always a recommendation.  Why can’t it be lobster, or steak, or chocolate milkshakes?

Salads are always recommended for healthy eating because they are good for you.  Spinach, dark green lettuce, tomatoes, celery, carrots, and radishes are rich in Vitamin C and other antioxidants.  These are nutrients that reduce swelling, as well as offer a host of other healthy side effects.

Eating salads can help reduce swelling and reduce the amount of weight you are carrying around.  The less you weigh the better your knees will feel.  So make salads as much a part of your knee osteoarthritis treatment program as medications and physical therapy.  What’s easier, eating a salad or figuring out how much your prescription  co-pay should be if your deductible hasn’t been met?



Olive Oil

Olive Oil

Olive oil is used throughout the world in cooking, cosmetics, soaps, lamp oil, and pharmaceuticals.  The oleic acid contained within olive oil is an anti-inflammatory agent.  Research has shown that people who eat more oleic acid have lower blood sugar and better insulin function.  Also there is a lot of data available that explains consumption of olive oil can have a healthy effect on the heart by regulating cholesterol.

Olive oil and garlic for your knee OA or NSAIDs and surgery?  Your choice.