Osteoarthritis occurs when the cartilage between bones and joints wears down, allowing bones to rub together rather than giving them the protection and cushion they need. Cartilage is made up of collagen and other substances that make connective tissue both flexible and strong.
Cartilage covers the ends of bones where they meet the joints and deterioration over time can affect the shape and functionality of the joints, making it painful and difficult to carry out everyday tasks.
Some types of arthritis can be explained as wear and tear, which is expected as some sports enthusiasts grow older; however, arthritis, osteo- or rheumatoid-, are the result of localised inflammation linked with the immune system.
The immune system is the buffer between a person’s chemistry and his or her environment and habitat. Several studies suggest that diet, infections or immune reaction may have a strong causal role to play in various types of arthritis. Identifying such factors is essential in an attempt to reverse the disease.
The most important relationship between diet and OA is weight. Not only does being obese or overweight increase the strain on joints, but excess fat causes inflammation which can exacerbate symptoms. There is strong evidence that losing weight can reduce pain and improve physical function and mobility.
If you are overweight or obese, losing 10% of your body weight will give optimum benefit, not only for symptoms but for overall health. This can be achieved by eating a healthy diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables.
Incorporating exercise helps to maintain muscle while losing weight. OA has been linked to type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease; losing excess weight will also help to prevent or manage these conditions
there are foods which cause an increase in inflammation and others which may help to reduce it.
If you wish to find out how a change to your diet can help to alleviate the pain of arthritis you can make an appointment with Beverley, our nutritionist, and she will assess your diet and make recommendations which are tailored to your needs.
The diet plans we provide are built on medical health assessments of your body. They are supported by further assessments throughout the course of your treatment programme. Your health is our foremost priority and we are here to help you improve it for the long term.