Horseman’s Health: Supporting Your Joints in Healthy Aging

Cerise at Buck clinicFinding it a little harder these days to swing in and out of the saddle or notice being stiffer than usual in the mornings? As we age doesn’t it seem like joint and muscle pain only gets worse? Sore joints and muscles often are the result of inflammation that can be caused by the damage from free radicals. In our quest for healthy aging there are natural solutions we can use to deal with free radicals and our painful joints.

What Are Free Radicals?
First we need to know a little about free radicals and how they work. Our body cells are under constant attack by damaging, unstable molecules which are called free radicals. Free radicals are molecules in cells that weaken to the point that they lose an electron. This weakness is caused by things like toxins in the body, exposure to UV rays, chlorinated water, pollution, stress, heavy exercise, overwork and overcooked, fried and processed foods. These free radicals then go around taking electrons from other molecules and creating more free radicals. Free radicals damage the body, including cells, enzymes, and DNA, causing effects such as pain, soreness, inflammation, and chronic diseases.

Healthy Aging Strategies for Joint Pain
The first thing to consider in healthy aging and dealing with joint pain caused by free radical damage is the type of foods you are eating. If you are eating a lot of processed or fast foods then you are going to have more free radicals. Antioxidants fight off free radicals which can relieve inflammation and pain. Where do you get antioxidants? The best way is by eating lots of fresh fruits and vegetables. If you know you are going to be doing a lot of physical labor then eat extra antioxidant foods to help fight off the added free radicals that are going to result. Some of the fruits and vegetables highest in antioxidants include red beans, kidney beans, blueberries, cranberries, artichokes, broccoli, spinach, carrots, bell peppers, tomatoes and papaya to name a few. Are you seeing a pattern here? Go with bright colored fruits and veggies and you’ll be pretty sure to be getting extra antioxidants.

Sometimes with our busy schedules it’s hard to get all the fruits and vegetables we need to get enough antioxidants. This is where I find that this sprouts supplement is a big help. It is rich in chlorophyll, glutathione, enzymes, vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients from its combination of kale sprouts, red clover sprouts, wheat sprouts, concentrated wheat sprouts, and Dunaliella salina algae which all means it is loaded with antioxidants.

Other Natural Solutions to Support Joint Health in Healthy Aging
Getting more antioxidants to deal with the free radicals in your body is a great start to dealing with joint pain, but there are other ways you can support healthy aging and deal with these pains. Here are a few natural ways to help your joints stay healthy.

Drop a few pounds – The more weight your body has, the more stress your joints endure. If you are overweight, really start working on getting rid of that extra weight. Losing weight not only takes stress off your joints, but also increases your circulation which also helps in relieving pain.

Get up and move your body – If you work at a desk or do a lot of sitting, get up periodically and move around or if you can’t do that then at least shift your position every so often. When you move your body you exercise your joints. Doing exercises that allow your joints to move through their full range of motion helps make them more flexible and can reduce stiffness. Doing stretching exercises not only helps keep joints strong and flexible, but also helps with oxygenation in the body, increases physical stamina and helps relieve tired and tense muscles.

Add fish to your diet – Coldwater fish such as salmon, herring, mackerel and tuna are good sources of omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3s help reduce inflammation and support your joint health. If you don’t get a lot of fish in your diet now, consider eating fish a few times a week or you can add an AFA bluegreen algae supplement to your diet as it is full of omega-3s.

SAMe Supplements – SAMe (S-adenosylmethionine), is produced naturally by the body, but our bodies’ don’t make as much we get older. Some studies have shown that supplementing with SAMe can affect joint pain in much the same way as anti-inflammatory drugs.

Algae and Enzymes Supplement – This supplement gives you a combination of plant-based proteolytic enzymes–bromelain, papain, protease, lipase, and serratiopeptidase, with AFA bluegreen algae, to support your body’s inflammatory response to physical exercise and free radical damage. Bromelain is found in pineapple and not only has anti-inflammatory properties but can also help with digesting proteins.

Algae and Glucosamine/Chondroitin Supplement – This supplement combines vegetable-based glucosamine, chondroitin, UC-II® undenatured collagen, and AFA bluegreen algae for joint and cartilage support. Healthy joint cartilage contains glucosamine that helps keep joints lubricated and in good shape. In combination with chondroitin, glucosamine has been reported in studies to give relief to joint pain and help increase joint mobility.

Getting older doesn’t have to include creaky and painful joints. Give a few of these healthy aging tips a try and see what works for you. Healthy eating, exercise and some diet supplementation can go a long way to helping you stay active and productive.

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