When it comes to finding a cure for arthritis, researchers in the dark. At the same time scientists know rheumatoid arthritis occurs much more frequently in women than in men. And, they know certain genes play a role in the immune system of a person with rheumatoid arthritis.
Unfortunately, as we get older, we tend to think that arthritis is inevitable. However, this is not the case. And, if you already have arthritis, there are foods and habits you should avoid which can make it worse. Researchers know a myriad of ways a person may lower his or her risk, even if he or she has a genetic makeup that makes rheumatoid arthritis prevention more of a challenge.
If you have a relative with arthritis or if you want to slow down the progression of the autoimmune disease, consider devising your own arthritis prevention plan.
Since arthritis is not a contagious disease and cannot be transmitted from person to person, arthritis prevention thankfully does not depend on avoiding people with the disease.
Arthritis prevention is about common sense, staying physically fit, maintaining a stress-free and smoke-free environment as well as reducing strain on joints.
People who are obese put greater strain on their weight-bearing joints making arthritis prevention virtually impossible. Studies show obese people tend to eat more refined, processed foods and exhibit bad habits that do not mix with arthritis prevention. Therefore, reducing your weight will reduce your likelihood of developing arthritis.
As part of your own arthritis prevention plan drink more water. Water plays a major role in the lubrication of your joints. Furthermore, water makes up 70 percent of the cartilage in joints.
Next, as part of your arthritis prevention plan, adopt healthy eating habits. Eat more fresh fruits and vegetables, legumes, oily fish and nuts. Cut down on food high in fat, including red meats and take mineral and vitamin supplements.
People with arthritis as well as those interested in prevention, may want to reduce repetitive strain on their joints and muscles. Rotate tasks throughout the day since forceful motions may contribute to arthritis.
Just as important is to rotate work tasks on the job, it is critical for arthritis prevention that you cross-train when you exercise. A sedentary lifestyle will not help a person with arthritis or aid in prevention, although it is important to rest more during flair-ups.
In one Danish study, exercise helped strengthen the bones of women with arthritis who are at high risk of developing the bone-thinning disease osteoporosis.
According to the study Dr. Ole Rintek Madsen of Bispebjerg University in Copenhagen, Denmark, women with arthritis whose thigh muscles were strongest also had thighbones that were denser. His findings shed new light on rheumatoid arthritis prevention, suggesting exercise could help preserve bone strength in rheumatoid arthritis patients.
Another piece of the arthritis prevention pie has to do with psychological health. When it comes to prevention of any disease, the reduction of stress and getting enough sleep is paramount.
Consider meditating, listening to relaxation tapes, deep breathing exercises, visualisation and yoga. Yoga is ideal for arthritis prevention because it is not only relaxing, but yoga postures may help with flexibility and range of motion of joints.
One sure fire prevention measure is to stop smoking. Smoking was implicated as a possible cause of arthritis after several major studies including one published in the March 2000 issue of the Journal of Rheumatology.
Frederick Wolfe, M.D. studied both seropositive and seronegative arthritis patients. He found the rheumatoid factor values increase when correlated with duration of smoking. Also, results showed smokers are more often rheumatoid factor positive than non-smokers, and the rheumatoid factor is associated with a more severe case of rheumatoid arthritis.
Finally, in creating your arthritis prevention plan, you must protect your joints and avoid injury. Using the right techniques when sitting, working, and lifting can help protect joints from everyday strains. Carry items close to your body so you don’t put too much strain on your wrists. When exercising, focus on your technique and ensure its correct. And, if you have to sit for long periods of time, make sure that your back, legs, and arms are well supported.
If you do start to develop arthritis, see your doctor. The damage from arthritis is usually progressive, meaning the longer you wait to seek treatment, the more destruction can occur to the joint. Your doctor may be able to suggest treatments or lifestyle interventions that can slow the progress of your arthritis and preserve your mobility.