As we get older, our joints can start to hurt. Some natural supplements can help ease the pain.
Glucosamine levels drop as people get older and it helps keep the cartilage in the joints healthy and can also help rebuild the cartilage. The impact isn’t immediate, it could take several months to see any improvement.
Chondroitin often goes along with glucosamine to reduce pain and rebuild cartilage.
SAM-e (S-adenosylmethionine) acts as a pain reliever and anti-inflammatory. It can also stimulate cartilage growth and keep pain perception down. SAM-e delivers sulfur to the cartilage which helps build stronger joints.
Tumeric contains the chemical curcumin which can block inflammatory cytokines and enzymes, thereby reducing pain and swelling.
Capsaicin is a substance in hot peppers. It reduces pain by reducing substance P, a transmitter of pain. You can use it as a topical cream, gel, or patch.
The omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oils can help the body produce chemicals to help control inflammation. It prevents certain kinds of enzymes from damaging joints. Fish oil can also help with stiffness from rheumatoid arthritis. The body converts the ingredients into anti-inflammatory chemicals called resolvins.
Omega-3s also come from fish, avocados, nuts, and seeds. The body also converts the omega-6 fatty acids in Gamma Linolenic Acid (GLA) to anti-inflammatory chemicals.
Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties similar to those of ibuprofen and COX-2 inhibitors.
Calcium and Vitamin D
The body needs calcium for healthy bones and it can also help reduce inflammation and pain. You can get calcium in a pill form or in dark leafy greens, milk, yogurt, and broccoli.
Vitamin D helps the body absorb calcium and also promotes good joint health.
Avocado Soybean Unsaponifiables (ASU)
Avocado-soybean Unsaponifiables (ASU) can block the chemicals that cause inflammation. It can also prevent the deterioration of the cells that line the joints. ASUs may also help regenerate normal connective tissue.
Before taking any supplements, make sure to talk with your doctor so you understand any potential side effects and possible interactions with medications. For example, ginger might thin the blood and glucosamine and chondroitin may interact with diuretics and blood thinners.
Even though there have been some studies involving supplements, there is no regulatory agency to control their content and quality. The National Institutes of Health’s Medline Plus website has information about many different supplements. The Arthritis Foundation also has a supplement and herb guide.
If supplements aren’t doing enough and you want more information about non-surgical solutions to knee and joint pain, the professionals at Flexogenix can help. Contact us today.