It's predicted that half of all Americans will develop joint problems after the age of 50, which presents a huge problem for Baby Boomers who want to stay active and independent, but probably haven't taken the necessary steps.
It's critical to know how to recognize the warning signs of joint deterioration. Some you will notice — irritated joints, decreased flexibility and aching when moving after a period of time at rest.
You're much less likely to notice the health of your joint surfaces, though — the part that covers the end of each bone and is required for joint function. The joint surface has to be able to glide freely in order to be comfortable and mobile. The joint lining provides some lubrication to facilitate joint movement, but with age it becomes thin, dry and irritated. You won't notice as it's getting thinner and thinner, until it is completely worn through and you can feel the bone rubbing against bone.
Collagen loss is another thing you have to be more aware of. The body loses collagen as we get older, and it needs to be replenished from supplements to support both bones and joints, because it is not found in enough of the foods we eat. You can see collagen depletion in your skin, but you have to actively promote collagen production in your bones and joints.
Two other collagen boosting ingredients that are important to joint health are UC-II and ASU. UC-II is a patented type of collagen that has been shown to be more effective than Glucosamine and Chondroitin. UC-II also leads to increased activity levels for knee joint sufferers. ASU stands for avocado/soybean unsaponifiables, obtained from avocados and soybeans and used to help support joint health. Studies show ASU helps increase production of collagen in joint surfaces, while decreasing chemicals that can cause inflammation.
In addition to your nutrition, you can do movement exercises that help joint function. Loosing weight will also decrease the stresses placed on joints. Just 5 pounds of weight lost can take as much as 15 pounds of pressure off your joints.View Thread
In a new study sponsored by the U.S. National Institutes of Health Osteoarthritis Initiative researchers looked at data on 600 participants - some were taking bone-building drugs, some were taking pain relievers such as ibuprofen and some were taking glucosamine and chondroitin supplements.
They examined the spaces between joints including comparisons of 30 different joint parts in the knee, and monitored arthritis symptoms and osteoarthritis progression over the course of two years.
Those who took both anti-inflammatory pain medications and glucosamine and chondroitin supplements had less pain and milder changes due to disease in one part of the knee joint than those who took the pain drugs but no supplements — but given the sheer number of comparisons between joint parts it does not amount to great significance. Among those who were not taking pain medication, there was no difference in pain between people taking the supplements and those who didn't.
Previous research on the effectiveness of Glucosamine and Chondroitin have been mixed.
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