Arthritis, which means joint inflammation, is a common condition as a person ages. It can cause several symptoms that affect a person’s ability to perform everyday tasks.
Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis. Meanwhile, gout, fibromyalgia, and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) are other common rheumatic conditions related to arthritis.
The cause of arthritis may vary depending on the type or form of arthritis. Some of its possible causes are as follows:
- Inheritance, such as in osteoarthritis
- Injury, leading to degenerative arthritis
- Immune system dysfunction, such as in RA and SLE (Systemic Lupus Erythematosus)
- Abnormal metabolism, leading to gout and pseudogout
- Infections, such as in the arthritis of Lyme disease (an infectious disease caused by a bacterium named Borrelia, spread by ticks)
If you want to lower your risk and protect yourself from this painful disorder then it’s necessary that you take preventive measures in order to avoid it.
Consider the data below about the lifetime risks for arthritis which was summarized by the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention):
- An estimated 67 million American’s over the age of 18 will have an arthritis diagnosis by the year 2030
- Reports have shown that 1 out of 5 adults have been diagnosed with arthritis
- About 50% of adults over 65 reported an arthritis diagnosis
- Nearly 1 in 2 people may develop symptomatic knee osteoarthritis by age 85
- Reports showed that 1 out of 4 people may develop hip arthritis in their lifetime
There are risk factors that you can control to help you decrease your risk of getting arthritis or making arthritis worse. Here are some of it:
People who are overweight have a higher risk of developing arthritis particularly knee osteoarthritis since the extra weights place more stress on joints like hips and knees.
Avoid this from happening by eating healthy foods and doing safe exercises in order to stay at a healthy weight.
You need to stop smoking. Cigarette smoking only increases your risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and can make the disease worse. It causes systematic inflammation and oxidative stress and destroys your body. Also, a person smoking has difficulty in staying physically active which is needed in order to manage RA and other types of arthritis.
Immediately consult a doctor if your joints are warm, red, and swollen as it might be caused by an infection that can possibly lead to the development of some types of arthritis.
Unbalanced Omega 6 to Omega 3 Ratio
Many disorders, including arthritis, are caused by unbalanced omega 6 to omega 3 ratio. These two are important fatty acids that play a major role in many bodily functions. Our ancestors consumed a ratio of about 1:1. However, in these modern times, a lot of people have been consuming a ratio of 25:1.
Some of the omega-6 rich foods are soybean oil, sunflower oil, corn oil, and safflower oil. On the other hand, consuming salmon, mackerel, oysters, and sardines can increase your omega-3 levels.
Joint injury or overuse such as knee bending and repetitive stress can contribute to the development of osteoarthritis. Do some special exercises for those joints to protect them from injuries.
Excess Carbohydrate Consumption
Foods such as pasta, sugary breakfast cereals, pancakes, bread products, sugary drinks and many more are packed with unhealthy carbohydrates which can spike in blood sugar, thus triggering an inflammatory response in the body. Replace your carbs with healthy fats like grass-fed butter and coconut oil.
Excessive Soda Consumption
Sodas contain phosphoric acid that may leech calcium from your bones, thereby resulting in higher risks for osteoarthritis.
Once you reach your golden years, arthritis is really inevitable. Due to this, it’s really necessary that you plan and make healthy choices while you are still young.