Joint tissues are one of the slowest in the body to repair when damage or wear and tear has occurred. When things go wrong with the joints, the effects may be limiting to normal life and most impactful on health overall due to long term pain and impact on mobility. This can have a secondary effect to other problems with a longer term lack of mobility potentially impacting on mental health, social health and weight management as exercise is reduced.
Focusing on the health of your joints in advance of problems occurring is a much more favourable approach, prevention is always better than cure. When it comes to Nutrition, it is important to understand that the delivery of nutrients to this particular area is already challenging. This is where specific forms of the right nutrients are important, ensuring that the body has the key building blocks to help restore and nourish this difficult to reach area. We also need to ensure that the all of right cofactors are all included to ensure optimal nutrient absorption and delivery.
Inflammation is another key element to consider here too with this being at the heart of many problems relating to Joint Health. Rebalancing the prostaglandin response towards anti-inflammatory rather than pro-inflammatory mediators is a focus area in which your Nutritional Therapist will work. Looking at the use of key anti-inflammatory herbs as well as addressing the ratio of omega fats and specific vitamins such as vitamin D.
Immunity is also part of the complex picture when it comes to joint problems caused by an autoimmune response. Balancing the immune response will come much higher up the priority scale for these individuals. We always look back at the root cause to address a balance there, whilst maintaining a plan to provide some relief for the day to day symptoms experienced by the individual.
Sometimes some of the most simplistic of nutritional interventions can have such as positive impact, especially when it comes to the pain associated with joint problems. There are some specific yet cost effective functional foods that we can work to include in the diet and we always look to assess whether there are any aggravating factors potentially included in the diet.
Some of the most common joint conditions we work with are as follows:
General joint pain
Post Operative Recovery
Preventative support for Sports
During a Nutritional Therapy consultation we use a Functional Medicine Framework to look at the root cause of joint issues, which will be unique to every individual. We then provide clear advice on specific scientific nutritional interventions and co-create a workable plan for the patient. The specific guidelines would be so varied dependent upon the root cause of the specific presentation or whether we are working preventatively.
We can also use functional testing either privately via ourselves or in conjunction with your GP to look at inflammatory markers, autoimmune markers in some cases, and uric acid in the specific case of gout. When joint conditions present in conjunction with digestive problems, we may also look at the Complete Gastrointestinal Profile as specific bacteria within the microbiome have been shown to produce enzymes that may speed up the degradation of joint tissues.
There is no one size fits all approach and we help to educate and create a workable plan with the simplest of interventions to make the most positive impact on your health.