Top Tips on keeping your joints healthy this Winter
Winter has officially arrived in the UK, bringing with it crisp mornings and dark afternoons. Unfortunately for many though, these colder months can also increase prevalence of joint pain and stiffness. 17 million people in the UK have a joint and musculoskeletal condition1, such as osteoarthritis, and if you already suffer from joint aches, the chilly and wet weather can make exercising and moving your body more challenging.
Why is this? According to a Consultant Rheumatologist, Dr Rod Hughes:
“People who suffer from arthritic joints may experience increased pain and stiffness during colder months. Low pressure weather patterns may have a physical impact on the joints and could cause already inflamed areas such as knees, hands and hips to swell which can cause pain. In addition, during cold weather, the body focuses on circulating blood around the core and major organs and away from muscles and joints. As a result, the joints can feel less flexible.”
Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common type of arthritis in the UK. It is a chronic condition that results in inflammation of the joints and surrounding tissues, affecting as many as 50% of people over the age of 652. Dr Rod Hughes explains in more depth, “The condition is generally age-related, with wear and tear of joint tissues causing lubricant cartilage lining in the joint to gradually wear away. OA changes and the inflammation involved causes difficulty moving and considerable pain.”
Fortunately, with the fast-approaching months likely to see colder temperatures, you’re got plenty of time to incorporate simple lifestyle changes into your routine to help your joints prepare for the changing of the seasons.
To prepare your joints for the winter chills, and support active living all year round, Consultant Rheumatologist Dr Rod Hughes has shared his top 5 tips for Winter joint care:
Gentle Exercise – “It’s extremely important to keep active if you can. Take regular, gentle exercise like walking, swimming, or a specialised fitness class, to keep your joints, supporting muscles, and ligaments strong and supple. This can help improve the range of movement of your joint, reduce stiffness and help with energy levels.”
Give yourself a helping hand – “We can help to protect our joints and effectively treat joint pains by using a clinically proven joint and soft tissue supplement such as rose-hip extract prepared as the galactolipid GOPO®. This has been shown in studies to reduce cartilage damage3 whilst relieving joint pain, stiffness, and inflammation4-7. Not only do people report great benefit from these supplements but good quality clinical research has also proved GOPO®, found in GOPO® Joint Health, is effective.”
Maintain your ideal body weight – “It’s easy to indulge over the winter months, however increased weight puts more stress on your weight-bearing joints. Exercise and eating a healthy balanced diet will also help in maintaining your ideal body weight, which is important to reduce the load and protect weight-bearing joints such as the back, knees and hips.
Eat plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables – “A varied balanced diet, rich in fruits and vegetables, supports all areas of healthy wellbeing including your joint health. As all arthritis involves inflammation, foods with anti-inflammatory properties may be of benefit to calm the body’s immune response. Ginger has been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties to reduce morning joint stiffness, an early indicator of OA, and has been shown to benefit symptoms of arthritis in the knee by relieving pain and improving mobility8-10. Vitamin C is also important for the formation of collagen, a key component of protective joint cartilage, and is plentiful in lots of citrus fruits and vegetables, or available as a supplement
Look after your mind – “Don’t forget to look after your mental health. Living with joint pain has been associated with increased prevalence of depression, so if you notice you are feeling low or are worried about your mood you can seek support from your GP or healthcare professional. Charities such as Versus Arthritis can also offer help and advice.”
For joint pain sufferers looking for a solution to their winter joint pain, a clinically backed compound may offer hope. Meet GOPO® Joint Health:
GOPO® Joint Health is a powerful natural anti-inflammatory treatment made from specially cultivated rose-hip, shown in extensive scientific studies to reduce joint pain and swelling, improving joint mobility4-7 and may even restore cartilage3.
Ginger has also been shown to activate anti-inflammatory proteins to reduce morning joint stiffness8,9 and muscle pain by 25%10, and is available alongside high levels of GOPO® in the new GOPO® Joint Health Plus Ginger, specially formulated to safeguard joints to help maintain an active lifestyle.
The GOPO® Joint Health range contain the highest available levels of GOPO®, due to a special patented cultivation process, and are available from Boots, Amazon, supermarkets and independent chemists nationwide. Visit www.gopo.co.uk for further information.