Joint pain is discomfort and soreness associated with any joint in the body. It may be caused by an illness or injury. One of the leading causes of joint pain is arthritis. The two main forms of arthritis are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Some other common causes of joint pain include:
- Infectious diseases such as mumps, influenza, and hepatitis.
- Chondromalacia of the patella
- Bone infections
Joint pain may make it difficult to carry out daily activities such as walking, working, or exercising. Although there are several over the counter drugs to help with the discomfort caused by joint pain, there are some natural alternatives which have been shown to be just as effective. Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids are a popular alternative remedy for joint pain. Omega-3 has health benefits for a variety of conditions ranging from cholesterol problems to diabetes and arthritis. This is particularly due to its anti-inflammatory properties which play a significant role in joint pain relief.
Regular consumption of omega-3 can help reduce the severity of joint problems such as morning stiffness, tenderness swelling, and pain. It helps improve blood circulation across the body which reduces joint pain and swelling. This can have a long term effect particularly by reducing the need for non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
Omega-3 fatty acids, eicosapentaenoic acid, and docosahexaenoic acid have been shown to help decrease inflammations. They inhibit the production of certain types of proteins which prevents arthritis. Various sources of omega-3 such as fish oil contain vitamin D which is essential for maintaining strong healthy joints. Docosahexaenoic acid has been shown to be more effective at reducing inflammations.
Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for maintaining healthy cells. These fats play a major role in keeping joints healthy by replenishing and supplementing joint tissues. The synovial fluid contains high levels of omega-3s. This fluid provides sufficient lubrication for joints. It reduces the friction when joints rub against each other and help minimize pain and strains.
Eating diets rich in omega-3 fatty acids may also strengthen the bones themselves. Studies show that eicosapentaenoic acid, one of the types of omega-3 works with vitamin D to improve the absorption of calcium in the body. This is greatly important as it helps increase bone density and protects against osteoporosis, a bone condition that can cause joint pain.
Taking high doses of omega-3 supplements has also been effective against the symptoms of ankylosing spondylitis. This is a type of arthritis that causes stiffness and pain in the spine. It is a lifelong condition that starts in the lower back and can advance up to the neck or damage joints in other parts of the body.
Rheumatoid arthritis is an inflammatory autoimmune condition in which antibodies attack the fluid membranes surrounding joints. This condition is associated with severe pain as there is a loss of lubrication between joints. Studies have shown that omega-3 fatty acids can help normalize the functioning of the immune system thus it can prevent and treat this kind of autoimmune reaction as well as other types of immune disorders.