Next to back pain, knee pain is one of the most common complaints among adults and young athletes. To properly treat and recover, it is essential to see more clearly the causes and symptoms of knee pain. A diet and some anti-inflammatory supplements can help reduce symptoms and pain.
Knee injuries are a common cause of knee pain, but you don’t have to fall, trip or bump yourself to hurt your knees. Arthritis, pinpoint inflammation, osteoporosis, certain types of exercise like running, and repetitive motions are all potential causes of knee pain.
The most common symptoms of knee pain
Knee pain describes any type of discomfort that affects the knees. It is common for knee pain to also be accompanied by other symptoms affecting the legs, which may include:
– Swelling around the knee
– Discomfort that worsens when walking or doing other exercises
– Inability to bear weight on the knee
– Stiffness and reduced ability to move the knee, such as having trouble straightening and bending the knee
– Weakness of the affected leg
– Redness and warmth around the patella
– Reduced range of motion in the knees
– Unusual noises when moving the knee, such as a cracking sound
The most common causes of knee pain:
– Leg injuries, including any injury that affects cartilage, ligaments, tendons
– Arthritis, which can include rheumatoid arthritis (an autoimmune condition that affects the joints) or osteoarthritis (degenerative arthritis that usually affects older adults)
– Biomechanical problems, such as low physical condition, muscle compensations that cause the patella to move from its optimal position
– Gout, characterized by uric acid or calcium-containing crystals forming on the joints
– One or more small fragments of bone or cartilage break off and remain floating in the joint space of the knee
– Infections that can cause fluid retention and swelling, such as septic arthritis
An anti-inflammatory diet to prevent knee pain
Eating a good diet is important for overall joint health for several reasons: it helps you maintain a healthy weight (which decreases pressure on your joints), reduces inflammation, improves recovery after exercise, and decreases chances of you developing arthritis or osteoporosis.
- Consume plenty of fruits and vegetables, especially those rich in vitamin C and antioxidants like leafy greens, carrots, peppers, berries, onions, broccoli, garlic, asparagus, and cabbage.
- Consuming omega-3 fatty acids from wild-caught fish, especially health-rich salmon. Other sources of healthy dietary protein include organic poultry and fish such as sardines or mackerel and organic eggs.
- Include healthy fats in your diet like coconut oil, olive oil, avocado, nuts and seeds.
- Add antioxidant herbs and spices to your meals.
- Limit or avoid excess sugar, hydrogenated oils (margarine type), processed/refined grains (white flour, processed meats and fast foods.
Some Anti-Inflammatory Supplements and Helpful Tips
Certain herbs and supplements can help reduce inflammation and support recovery from injury or limit the progression of degenerative joint diseases. The best supplements for knee pain include:
- – Turmeric
- – Glucosamine and chondroitin
- – Collagen
- – Omega-3 fatty acids
Of course, if the pain persists, consult a healthcare professional, an osteopath or a chiropractor near you.
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