What can I take to support my joints? I have joined a running club and want to make sure that I am doing the right things
Good for you for taking a proactive approach. There are several nutrition habits you can adopt and many supplements you can deploy to support your joints.
Focus on a nutrition plan that is rich in vegetables, fruit, clean proteins (hormone and anti-biotic free), and fish. Vegetables and fruits are mineral-rich and tend to have a relatively alkalinizing impact on body health. This tendency towards relative alkalinity is protective of joints and quells inflammation. Consider that vegetables and fruits come in a rainbow of colors –green, blue, purple, red, orange, yellow, and white. Do your best to bring these colors into your daily routine and you will be providing a variety of nutrients to assist good health. Additionally papaya, pineapple, MSM and curcumin (turmeric) work as natural anti-inflammatories.
Build your nutrition to be high in omega 3 oils, which also effectively dampen inflammation. Some sources of Omega 3 Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs) are wild cold-water fish, sea vegetables, microalgae, Omega 3 eggs, chia, and flax seed. The standard North American diet is typically 20:1 weighted towards Omega 6 oils instead of Omega 3. While Omega 3s are anti-inflammatory, Omega 6 fatty acids can increase inflammation in the body. While this final point of mediation of inflammation through adjusting the fats in your diet may seem minor it should be taken with great significance.
Research has shown that there are several nutrient depletions that when replenished bring about joint improvements. These nutrients include Niacinamide (a form of Vitamin B3), Vitamin B5, Vitamin B12, Folic acid, Vitamin C, Vitamin D, Boron and Selenium. The role these nutrients play in joint health is varied and in some cases the mechanism of their benefit is unknown; however, for each nutrient, several trials demonstrate efficacy. Furthermore, the supplementation of Glucosamine Sulfate provides one of the building blocks of cartilage and appears to slow cartilage breakdown. Osteoarthritis sufferers frequently show improvement after 8-weeks of supplementation with Glucosamine Sulphate at 1500mg/day. NEM (Natural Egg Shell Membrane) is another great supplement that can be added to quickly and effectively reduce pain and stiffness from osteoarthritis. Research shows the benefit of NEM at 500mg once per day.
I hope these suggestions help connect you with a solid plan.
“Health from the inside out.”
Dr. Kimberly McQueen BSc, ND is a Naturopathic Physician in Victoria, BC. In addition to her clinic work she has been a consultant to the Pacific Institute for Sport Excellence, Camosun College, Rugby Canada and Rowing Canada. P:778.433.4935 and www.kimmcqueen.com . Kim McQueen is one of the Co-founders of the nourishing Supershake, Rumble. See www.drinkrumble.com