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How can weight loss help reduce joint pain?

Grant Cooper, MD
Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation
You may be less inclined to exercise as joint pain increases. This decreased activity in turn leads to further weight gain, which leads to increased stress on the joints, causing more pain, less movement, and more weight gain. This is a difficult cycle to break. Fortunately, there is hope. Once you start shedding excess weight, you will take a significant amount of stress off your joints, and this will lead to a significant decrease in pain and stiffness.

If you are obese and worried about the damage you may have already done to your joints, lose weight now and you will greatly reduce your chances of developing arthritis. Women who lose as little as 11 pounds reduce their risk of developing arthritis of the knee by more than 50 percent.

The good news is that many of the same steps to treat and prevent arthritis will also help you shed excess weight with no extra effort. If you're obese or overweight, you already know that you should lose weight, and a doctor has probably already told you that it is important for you to lose weight. You may have tried different diets and found it difficult to shed the pounds. Please don't despair. Once you start eating right and exercising, the weight will start to come off. You'll be amazed by how much better your joints will feel.
The Arthritis Handbook: Improve Your Health and Manage the Pain of Osteoarthritis (A DiaMedica Guide to Optimum Wellness)

More About this Book

The Arthritis Handbook: Improve Your Health and Manage the Pain of Osteoarthritis (A DiaMedica Guide to Optimum Wellness)

According to conventional wisdom, arthritis pain is an inevitable part of aging. Not so, says Dr. Grant Cooper in this practical, accessible guide. For those who do develop osteoarthritic conditions,...

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.