There was a time, not too long ago, that “relieving joint pain” meant walking with a cane or giving up activities that you love. If you tried to be as active as you’d always been, or used your joints too much, you were looking at hours, if not days, of joint pain.
Thank goodness we don’t live in those times any longer! These days, we know more about relieving, and even preventing, joint pain than ever before. In fact, we’ve learned that you can even EAT your way out of joint pain! The trick is to know where to start-
While blueberries and strawberries get most of the attention when it comes to health benefits, people suffering from arthritis joint pain are missing out on one of the most powerful joint-health foods: cherries.
That’s right, eating cherries on a regular basis can help ease joint pain. Flavonoids called anthocyanins are the heroes here. They’ve been shown to minimize pain and stiffness caused by osteoarthritis, as well as reduce the frequency of gout flare-ups. The best part is you can get the same results from eating cherries or from drinking 100% pure tart cherry juice, so you can get relief even when cherries are out of season.
Since no one can live on cherries alone, you can make sure your other dietary choices are also providing joint pain relief with these other joint-friendly foods:
- Broccoli. Really, any of the cruciferous vegetables will help protect joint health, but broccoli is particularly impressive. Early studies indicate it has the potential to actually slow, or even prevent, cartilage damage caused by osteoarthritis. Plus, it’s high in sulphoraphane, an antioxidant that blocks joint pain and inflammation.
- Green tea. Like broccoli, green tea can help ease joint discomfort on more than one level, thanks to high amounts of antioxidants. The first ones – polyphenols – reduce inflammation while slowing down cartilage decay. The second one – EGCG – helps by completely blocking the source of joint damage in some arthritis patients.
- Legumes. For many people, animal proteins make joint pain worse, but you obviously can’t eliminate protein from your diet. That’s where beans come in. Not only are they an excellent source of protein, but they’re packed with nutrients that protect joint health and promote a healthy inflammatory response.
- Turmeric. This bright yellow spice has been used for centuries in traditional medicine to reduce joint discomfort – and modern science is catching up! Several studies have linked turmeric, and its active component, curcumin, to healthier, less painful joints. Not sure how to use it? Start by sprinkling it into savory stews or over chicken. Not thrilled with the flavor? You can always pick up a high-quality turmeric or curcumin supplement.
Hard work is satisfying, yes, but living with joint pain is hard enough. Relieve joint pain and discomfort easily, and deliciously, with cherries and these other joint-friendly foods!