Common types of arthritis include osteoarthritis, which occurs when the protective cartilage on the ends of your bones wears down, and rheumatoid arthritis, a chronic progressive disease causing inflammation in the joints which can result in painful deformity and immobility, especially in the fingers, wrists, feet, and ankles. Whatever type of arthritis you have, you know the debilitating effects it can have on your daily life. While there is no known cure, the goal of treatment is to reduce pain, improve function and prevent further joint damage.
“Drinking sufficient water (i.e., one-half of body weight/lbs. in ounces of water daily is important,” says Carolyn Dean, MD, ND, Medical Advisory Board Member – Nutritional Magnesium Association. In terms of supplements, Dean recommends “magnesium citrate powder mixed with water that is sipped throughout the day.” Dean says that “magnesium is a natural detoxifier which helps calcium absorption and keeps calcium from depositing into soft tissue where it can cause some forms of arthritis.” Dean also recommends reviewing with your physician the addition of “zinc selenium, copper, manganese, molybdenum and fermented cod liver oil for its Vitamin D and Vitamin A.”
Exercise – “Exercise is crucial for people with arthritis,” reports the Mayo Clinic. “It increases strength and flexibility, reduces joint pain, and helps combat fatigue.” Talk to your doctor or physical therapist about what type of exercise is recommended which generally will include range of motion style exercises, aerobic and strengthening exercises. “Circulation and muscle tone are very important but the exercise has to be gentle and modified to not create more pain,” says Dr. Dean.