A sports doctor’s guide to HEALTHY JOINTS
If your joints don’t feel good, you don’t feel good. That’s because there are about 300 of these connection points in your body. Yes, genetics play a role here, but there’s still plenty you can do to pain-proof your joints. Here’s how Dr Brett Toresdahi, 37, does it.
I regularly run the four kays home from work, and it doesn’t wreck my knees, and it may help them. Some studies show that running may positively affect joints if your cartilage and alignment are healthy. That said, the more old trauma there is, the harder it is for our bodies to adapt appropriately. So if something hurts, get it checked out so you can build a consistent running program the healthy way.
CALL THE RIGHT SHOT
Injections for joint pains have a lot of hype around them. Cortisone and PRP (platelet-rich plasma)Can help manage pain from specific problems, but they have pros and cons. Even though stem-cell injections are being marketed as a new hope for growing cartilage, I wouldn’t get these for lack of evidence if I had joint issues. Nothing at this point can regrow cartilage, although that may change in Five to Ten years.
It’s important to eat what keeps you at a healthy weight because weight-related stress contributes to osteoarthritis of the hip and knee. I aim to control portions, minimize processed foods and consume a variety of fruits and vegetables. When my wife and I go out to dinner, we will have a bunch of vegetable sides and appetizers and split a meat entrée.
DON’T WAIT FOR THE WEEKEND
Our joints are adaptable, but it’s hard for them to adapt when you work or “stress” – them only once a week. If I want to run 10 or 12 kays on Saturday or Sunday, I make sure I run at least a few times a week, so I keep my body exposed to that kind of stress. Less frequent workouts are even harder for joints; inactivity can cause them to lose the support and stability needed to do the work you want them to do. Then you can get into this bad cycle in which pain keeps you inactive, inactivity keeps you weak, and weakness keeps the pain going.
I do about 15-20 minutes of yoga a few times a week. It improves the motion of the joints, partly by keeping tendons, which support the joints and muscles, from getting tight and stiff. If they are not elastic, you can start to develop bad habits in how joints are used, which can lay the groundwork for pain and other issues down the line.