Food: The First Line of Defense Against Pain
Could the food you eat make your joints hurt?
Many of us are in denial about the relationship between what
we eat and aching joints. If we don’t
believe we have a weight problem, chances are we don’t associate food with
If we haven’t been taught to follow a diet that is good for
our health, we eat what we want unless the doctor has warned us off certain
foods that will make high blood pressure or diabetes flare up. Pain management through a healthy diet isn’t
even considered a thing.
But, eventually, when the pain gets to be too much, we’ll
begin to notice what our bodies are trying to tell us. Perhaps we’ll notice that every time we eat
our favorite food, we suddenly go from feeling okay to aching joints.
How can that be, we think to ourselves.
Most people that our team knows admit to struggling with eating properly. The struggle takes on different dimensions, depending on whom you talk to. Interest in the topic can vary. Many (but not all) who live in a “food desert” where fresh foods are not reasonably available and might even require travelling on one or more bus rides seem less likely to focus on making sure that fresh fruits and vegetables in their daily diet. Others “want to eat what they want to eat”, health be damned. Yet others are hyper-vigilant about their diet, eating only pure vegan and looking with askance at anyone who does not embrace their choice of foods. However, most of us are gradually becoming aware that “we are what we eat”, a notion bolstered by our doctors who are imploring us to eat more cautiously if we want to keep our blood pressure or heart condition reasonably under control. You might hear something like “you need to lose weight if you want your knees to feel better.” Unfortunately what you rarely hear is “you need to change your diet to keep the inflammation down in your joints.”
Our team at NMP Herbal Blends Inc. has spent considerable time speaking to people about food consumption. Our focus on this topic is, in large part, due to the large number of people whom we know (many in our families) who suffer from arthritis, diabetes, heart conditions, and related illnesses. Seems like everyone suffered from joint pain. Although this subjective, informal survey was not definitive, it led us to look more broadly, at the general population. We didn’t have to look far. According to the Center for Disease Control, 23% of all adults, or more than 54 million people, have arthritis. It is a leading cause of work disability. The annual direct medical costs are at least $140 billion. In all probability, if you’re reading this you know someone who is among this group.
Although what we eat impacts every facet of our health, here we will focus on the ultimate motivator for change – Pain. Left unabated it will ruin your life. It is at the root of Opioid abuse, an epidemic that was the leading cause of death in 2017, and continues to wreak havoc across the U.S. Consider this: if you embrace foods that have been shown not to contribute to inflammation, you will have addressed many other health issues.
A word of caution. Each body is different, and will metabolize foods differently. Pay attention to how you feel after you eat different kinds of food. The feedback that you get from your own body is the most informative information you can receive. Why do you think your doctor asks questions such as what have you been eating, what food caused more discomfort, etc.
The question is: what are you going to do about it? Are you going to let food choices be the reason you don’t feel well, can’t live joyously because your joints keep you in constant pain? If you decide to be proactive and make food choices that support good health there are many resources that can help you.
Information on foods that cause inflammation is as close as a Google search (or whatever search engine you choose). This is an excellent place to start. We’ll help here on our Blog by providing additional information that can help you make an informed decision.
The first step is yours – the decision to have food as your first line of defense against joint pain.