Seven Tips for Preventing Osteoarthritis
Capping the bony ends of the body’s numerous joints, cartilage works like a built-in shock absorber. Ageing, wear and tear and injury degenerates’ cartilage, sparking a condition known as osteoarthritis (OA). Our Bristol Chiropractic centre cares for patients with OA, and focuses on teaching patients how to prevent the disorder.
OA often affects the hands, spine, knees and hips. Symptoms include joint pain, stiffness, loss of physical function, increasing immobility and muscle weakness.
Our Bristol chiropractic team , encourages all patients to take a proactive stance against OA.
Researchers noted that OA is one of the most prevalent musculoskeletal conditions affecting the ageing population worldwide. “Its prevalence is predicted to rise significantly in the future as the population ages.” (Phys Ther 2007;87:32.)
Fortunately, there is something you can do about it.

Researchers noted that OA is one of the most prevalent musculoskeletal conditions affecting the ageing population worldwide.  “Its prevalence is predicted to rise significantly in the future as the population ages.” (Phys Ther 2007;87:32.)
Fortunately, there is something you can do about it.

Maintain Regular Chiropractic Care
When spinal bones (vertebrae) are misaligned, the result is a common disorder known as vertebral subluxation.  Because the body functions as a unit, misalignment in the spine may cause a chain reaction, producing misalignment in joints throughout the body.
Our Bristol chiropractic centre prides itself in correcting the fixated vertebra with safe, gentle manoeuvres known as chiropractic adjustments: the idea being to prevent OA before it occurs, or help it to slow down in progression.
When OA has already onset, regular chiropractic care wards off related pain, including low-back pain (LBP) – as evidenced by a study of 262 patients with LBP secondary to OA.
The patients were randomly assigned to receive moist heat packs plus chiropractic care or moist heat pack alone.  After 20 sessions, extended over a period of several weeks, researchers noted that those receiving chiropractic care reported greater and more rapid pain reduction than the moist heat only group.  They also enjoyed increased range of motion and an improved quality of life (J Manipulative Physiol Ther 2006;29:107-14).

Lose Weight
Obese patients have a higher risk of developing OA of the knee than their leaner counterparts.  Dropping pounds can reduce stress on weight-bearing joints, limit further injury and increase mobility (Ann Intern Med 1992;116:535).
This is particularly true for older patients, as OA of the knee currently affects 40 percent of people over the age of 75 (Phys Ther 2007;87:32).

Consider Supplements
Cartilage consists of the following components:
Sixty-five to 80 percent water.
Collagen, a fibrous protein that’s the building block of skin, tendon, bone and other connective tissues.
Proteoglycan chemicals, consisting of proteins and sugars, which interweave with collagen to form a mesh like tissue.  This allows cartilage to flex and absorb physical shock.
Chondrocytes, which are cells that produce cartilage and help it, remain healthy.
“Chondroprotective (cartilage-protective) agents help the body repair the damage caused by osteoarthritic joint changes.  These nutrients work by stimulating the build-up (anabolic metabolism) of cartilage.” (Journal of Chiropractic 1990;27:69.)
There are two classes of chondroprotective agents: glycosaminoglycan’s (GAGs) and antioxidants.  GAGs include the chondroitin’s, a major chemical component of cartilage.
Studies show that supplementation with two GAGs, glucosamine and chondroitin sulphate, may ward off OA.
The other class of chondroprotective agents – antioxidants – includes vitamins A,C and E.  Additional anti-oxidants include selenium, green tea, grape seed extract and several others.  Antioxidant supplements are widely available.  Ask the doctor to recommend a formulation right for you.

Excellent food sources of antioxidants include:
Apple
Artichokes
Beans
Blackberries
Blueberries
Cranberries
Raspberries
Strawberries
Cherries
Remember to opt for organically grown foods whenever possible, as commercially produced produce may contain pesticide residues, which up the risk of several disorders.
Note: Never begin any supplementation program without first discussing it with your doctor of chiropractic.

Minimize Red Meat
“Greater (red) meat consumption is associated with a higher prevalence of degenerative arthritis and soft tissue disorders in both male and female subjects,” say researchers from Lorna Linda University in Loma Linda Ca.  (J Nutr Health Aging 2006;10:7-14).
Instead of meat, rely on antioxidant rich beans, nuts and other protein sources.
Applaud Avocados & Salute Soy Beans!
A unique compound that combines the health benefits of avocados and soy beans may help to promote OA cartilage repair, say researchers from Belgium (J Rheumatol 2006;33:1668-78).
Avocado/soybean unsaponifiables (ASU) is an extract prepared from avocado and soybean oil.  Experts in Denmark note that this all-natural product, is a powerful anti-inflammatory agent.  It also increases the activity of cartilage-producing cells (Ugeskr Laeger 2005;167:3023).

Exercise
As our global population ages, researchers believe the promotion of physical activity – as a tool to prevent and treat disease – will become increasingly important (Curr Sports Med Rep 2005;4:335-40).
This is particularly true when it comes to preventing OA.  Strengthening exercises, performed with weighs or exercise bands, fortify the muscles that support joints and reduce the likelihood of developing OA.  Range-of-motion activities are also great for keeping joints limber.
Note: Prior to starting any new exercise program, however, talk to your doctor of chiropractic.  Restrictions or modifications may be needed, depending on the condition of your overall health.

Walk Barefoot!
Research shows that walking barefoot may benefit patients with OA by slowing the disease’s progression.
Gait analysis was performed on 75 patients with OA of the knees and hips.  The testing compared the effects of everyday walking shoes versus bare feet.  The result? Walking barefoot produced significantly less dynamic loads on the knee and hip joints  (Arthritis Rheum 2006;54:2923-27).
Before banning your shoes to the bottom of your wardrobe, however, talk to your doctor.  Diabetics and those with lower-extremity circulation and nerve deficiencies should avoid going barefoot due to a heightened risk of injury and infection.
Let Us Be Your Partners In Health Care

Our Bristol Chiropractic office is committed to helping patients adopt the chiropractic life-style, a way of life that focuses on preventing health problems, rather than merely masking symptoms with medication.
Call today and schedule an appointment for a complete chiropractic evaluation with our Bristol Chiropractic team on 01179252886.   Together, we can stop OA and other diseases before they start.

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