BY COURTNEY ANAYA, CPT
Wear and tear is inevitable not only with age but lifiting. Placing heavy loads on your body, specifically your joints will trigger inflammation and possible joint pain. Going lighter may prevent both from happening, but ultimately it won’t produce any gains. Even if you have a sound diet, you may be lacking essential nutrients, which work to subside the inflammation and pain.
To help you get back on track and in the gym joint-pain free, consider dabbling with the right supps. Each joint-friendly supp will help to further strengthen your bones, rebuild broken down cartilage, and reduce inflammation. But the benefits don’t stop there, some of these supps also pack a healthful punch.
Chondroitin is also known as chondroitin sulfate, and it’s included in a protein molecule that helps give cartilage its elastic properties. It’s also thought to have anti-inflammatory properities. The ultimate function of this joint-friendly supp is that it slows the breakdown of cartilage — improving cushioning in the joints.
To reap even more benefits, consider pairing chondroitin with glucosaamine. A 2006 study found that individuals who took 1,500 milligram of glucosamine and 1,200 miligrams of chondroitin daily had less knee pain. Glucosamine is an alternative to non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS).
Vitamin C doesn’t just prevent colds and inhibit cortisone levels — allowing for greater t-levels — it’s also an essential vitamin for the body to produce collagen. Collagen is the most popular protein in the body — present in bones, muscles, skin, and tendons.
Collagen gets destroyed when stress is placed on the body or when you’re lifting heavy. Free radicals can also develop during intense workoutsOpens a New Window., further breaking down cartilage. Incorporating a daily vitamin C supp can help counteract all of this from happening — creating a faster recovery rate while protecting your joints.
Ginger has been touted to ease an upset stomach, but it also contains powerful anti-inflammatory properties to alleviate muscle pain. The Journal of Pain published a study in 2011 where 74 adults completed exercises to trigger muscle pain and inflammation.
Throughout the duration of the study — 11 days — participants consumed 2 grams of ginger a day or a placebo. Results: the ginger group had a 25 percent decrease in exercise-induced muscle pain 24 hours post-workout.
Tart Cherry Juice
Lifting heavy puts a significant amount of stress on the body, eventually inducing inflammation.
Tart cherry juice could be the next go-to post-workout drink because studies have shown that cherries are loaded with powerful antioxidants. These antioxidants work to prevent any free radical damage, expediting the recovery process.
Here comes the sun…Vitamin D is known as the sunshine vitamin because the sun stimulates vitamin D production in the body. However, about 75 percent of the population doesn’t get enough of the sunny vitamin — putting you at risk for greater cartilage loss.
The Arthritis and Rhuematism journal found that older individuals who had a significant amount of knee cartilage had higher levels of vitamin D in their blood. It’s recommended to take 800 to 1,000 IUs (international units) of vitamin D a day.
Following vitamin D, it’s clear that calcium is next in line. Calcium keeps your bones and teeth strong while playing a vital role in muscle contractions.
Maintaining a diet — dairy products and dark, green leafy vegetables — that’s rich in calcium may prevent the need of a supp
Fish oil hits every health aspect: boosts the immune system and congnitive function, decreases your risk for heart disease, prevents muscle breakdown, and triggers muscle growth and fat-burning. In the mix of all of that, fish oil also contains anti-inflammatory properities, which are due to the omega-3 fatty acids. Those fatty acids are EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid).
A study published in 2006 by Surgical Nuerology indicated that supplementing with fish oil instead of NSAIDs is safer in reducing arthritis pain.
The power-packed antioxidant drink doesn’t just burn fat but it also alleviates inflammation — keeping your joints movable. The reason: green tea contains the compound epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), which inhibits certain molecules of the immune system that can stimulate inflammation.
A group of University of Michigan researchers blocked a group of cells called synovial fibroblats; they form a layer of tissue around the joints. With arthritis, that layer becomes inflammed — leading to joint pain and damage. Researches exposed the synovial fibroblasts to EGCG, and it was found that EGCG blocked any hazardous molecules, specifically prostaglandin E2. Prostaglandin E2 causes joint inflammation.