How To Keep Joints Healthy
How you take care of your joints has huge implications for your mobility and overall quality of life—especially as you get older. Healthily functioning joints ensure flexibility that allows our bodies to move in many different ways. While a degree of joint pain and degradation may be hard to avoid to an extent, there are steps to take that can help sustain joint health and mobility.
Joints: What are they and why do they break down?
To put it simply, joints are where two bones meet. Our body is equipped with joints of various sizes/shapes that determine the direction and range of movement. Most joints are made up of a complex network of bone, cartilage, muscles, tendons, and ligaments. Healthy joint function is determined by its ability to bear weight and function with maximum flexibility.
Despite our best efforts, we are all bound to experience some form of joint discomfort in our lifetime. While conditions such as osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis are common causes (particularly in the elderly), many factors contribute to joint pain + inflammation. Dehydration, poor dietary choices, vitamin deficiencies, and overexertion all can have a terrible impact on your joints. The good news is that you can take matters of joint health into your own hands! Let’s take a closer look at what is good for joint health and some time-tested recommendations to help you keep your joints loose, limber, and lubricated.
Tips To Keep Joints Healthy
Our joints were literally made to move—which is why maintaining an active lifestyle and incorporating physical activity can lower the risk of pain and joint stiffness in these areas. Low impact exercise like stretching, walking, or cycling can help relieve pressure as well as enhance your range of motion. Just remember to incorporate a solid warm-up and cool-down routine!¹ Strength training exercises can help build stronger muscles and increase bone density. Core-strengthening exercises can improve balance and stability, while weight-bearing exercises (like jogging, dancing, and lifting weights) can strengthen muscle and provide support—as well as protection—to your joints.² Just make sure to follow up with some of the most tried and true workout recovery tips to prevent any possible joint damage from physical activity and/or weight training.
Maintain A Healthy Weight
Once your weight passes a certain threshold, it can cause serious problems for joints—especially your knees. For example, when you walk along a flat surface, the force upon your knees is about 1½ times your body weight!³ In addition to its inherent risks, excess weight puts an additional strain on your back, hips, and feet. This can cause swelling of the surrounding joint tissue, which can result in pain and reduced immobility. By maintaining a healthy weight, you can limit the amount of pressure on your joints and reduce the risk of chronic joint pain.
There are countless benefits to maintaining a more balanced diet. In addition to improving joint and bone health, diets rich in fruit, vegetables, lean protein, and whole grains can fill you with vitality and help you maintain a healthy weight. Lean proteins like turkey and legumes help build muscle strength. Vitamin D and calcium are widely known to support strong bones, and omega-3 fatty acids are thought to reduce joint inflammation.⁴ Foods such as mackerel, salmon, chia seeds, and walnuts are high in omega-3’s. Additional options include nuts, berries, turmeric, green tea, and green leafy veggies—all host properties that can diminish inflammation, as well as support muscle and joint health.
Your body needs water to stay hydrated as much as it needs food to survive! Hydration regulates body temperature, distributes nutrients, oxygen and hormones throughout your body, and is vital in removing toxins and other byproducts.⁵ Proper hydration also helps to keep your muscles and joints well-lubricated. According to the Cleveland Clinic, cartilage (malleable, connective tissue cushioning your joints) is 80% water.⁶ Dehydration causes your body to extract water from cartilage (as well as other parts of the body), which can result in major joint damage. Be sure to also drink adequate amounts of water to boost the production of synovial fluid—a thick liquid that lubricates cartilage and reduces friction and inflammation around your joints!⁷
Be Mindful of Your Joints
When it comes to maintaining healthy joints, here are additional measures to keep in mind:
- Whether you’re sitting or standing, a good posture can prevent additional stress on your joints (as well as injury to the surrounding muscles).
- Avoid repetitive movements, as they cause damage to your joints over time.
- Steer clear of activity that can put joints at risk—like long-term, high-impact activities or lifting objects that are too heavy.
- As a rule of thumb, it’s always important to listen to your body and cease any activity that causes you undue discomfort.
CBD & Healthy Joints
CBD is packed with properties known for a variety of wellness benefits, but it largely gained its reputation as a therapeutic, plant-based supplement to help combat pain and inflammation. CBD is a cannabinoid (or chemical compound) that makes up the majority of the hemp plant. With its purported neuroprotective and anti-inflammatory agents, CBD is thought to be as effective as a full-body sedative.⁸⁻⁹ As a relatively new area of study, ongoing research has suggested that CBD works through interaction with a network of cannabinoid receptors located throughout our bodies.¹⁰ This network (called the endocannabinoid system—or ECS) is believed to maintain homeostasis of your body systems.¹¹ Once your ECS receives and translates signals from CBD within the bloodstream, it produces its own cannabinoids—aptly called endocannabinoids. These “in-house” endocannabinoids then bind to various CB receptors throughout the body, producing a variety of phenomena such as pain relief, diminished inflammation, and sedation.¹²
Whether you’re simply exploring natural supplements geared toward relief and recovery, or wanting to do all you can to keep your joints nice and limber, our high potency offerings have you covered! The Lazarus Naturals Pain Management & Recovery collection includes naturally effective options (like tinctures, softgels, and topicals) crafted to deliver relief from the inside out. An array of time-tested, active secondary ingredients—combined with our high-quality cannabinoids—work hard to help maintain overall joint and muscle health.
From learning how to improve your focus and motivation to how to keep joints healthy, we’ve got you covered. Head over to our Product Guide to discover how specially formulated products, that are better for you and the planet, may aid in keeping your body moving with ease!