Women, in particular, need to protect their joint health as they age. Neglecting good joint health in your younger years can greatly increase the risk of developing joint pain and arthritis later in life. If you want to avoid developing these conditions, here are a few suggestions to help you to protect your joints.
Maintain a healthy weight
Obesity is a major factor that increases the likelihood of developing arthritis. Since joints are responsible for holding up the body during normal activity, maintaining a healthy weight level is key to ensuring joint health. In fact, every additional pound above a healthy weight increases knee strain by up to four times. To manage your weight, eat a nutritious diet that consists of foods high in calcium, Vitamin C, and Omega-3 fatty acids.
Avoid a sedentary lifestyle
A sedentary lifestyle is also a major contributor to joint pain and arthritis. To prevent this, make it your goal to engage in moderate exercise several times a week. Non-stressful activities such as walking, light jogging, or swimming are excellent ways to increase your activity level gently.
To protect your joints even further, add a light weight training workout a couple of times a week. Focus on training all of your major muscle groups by alternating them throughout the week. You might, for example, focus on your back and legs one day and your upper body and abs another day. Be sure to ease into a workout routine slowly to avoid straining your joints. If you are already dealing with arthritic or joint pain, an urgent care doctor can provide suggestions for managing your pain before you begin a workout plan.
Make changes at work
The modern workplace can put a lot of strain on women’s joints, especially if you work in an office or in another field that requires you to sit still for long periods of time. To keep your joints from aching from inactivity, stand up and stretch for a few minutes every hour. Try a simple stretching routine that releases tension in your hands, fingers, wrists, and neck.
If you work at a computer terminal, invest in an ergonomic keyboard to reduce strain on your wrists and forearms. You may also benefit from an ergonomic office chair, which can ease back or spine pain from sitting. If your boss gives the go-ahead, a standing desk is even better for your joints, because it both improves your posture and allows you to stand up for most of the day.