How should I protect my joints to avoid osteoarthritis?

Dr. Michael Roizen, MD
Internal Medicine
To protect yourself against osteoarthritis, do resistance exercises, take appropriate amounts of vitamin D3, vitamin C, DHA, and calcium and magnesium, stay active but don’t stress your joints out the way you stressed your parents out as a teenager. Here’s how:
  • Stay at a healthy weight. If you’re not at a healthy weight yet, even losing around 10 pounds can make a world of difference for your joints and your ticker, too.
  • Exercise regularly. 30 minutes at a time, 5 days a week. You can take your 10,000 steps, try a yoga class, or go for a swim. As long as you’re active and participating in a low-impact activity, you’re doing your joints a world of good.
  • Don’t be a weekend warrior. An afternoon of touch football or a weekend tennis tournament could make your knees really hate you the next day. Stick to resistance exercises to strengthen your muscles, and low-impact activities as much as possible.
  • Wear safety equipment. It may look dorky or make you sweat like crazy, but it saves your joints, so you can play again tomorrow.
  • Wear athletic shoes that fit properly.
To protect your joints against osteoarthritis, follow these guidelines:

- Stay at a healthy weight.
- Exercise regularly.
- Don't be a weekend warrior -- avoid activities your body isn't ready for.
- Wear safety equipment such as knee pads when playing sports.
- Wear athletic shoes that fit properly.
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)

Sticking to some good health habits will lead to happier checkups and protect your joints to boot. For instance, being overweight increases your risk for heart disease, diabetes and a number of other serious conditions. Count osteoarthritis as one of them. Keeping your weight under control reduces pressure on the joints, which helps keep them healthy.

Likewise, exercise lowers the risk for many diseases, including osteoarthritis. However, if you already work out regularly and have been diagnosed with osteoarthritis, you may need to change your regimen. Jogging or other high-impact activities may have to take a back seat to walking, swimming, or some other exercise that doesn't jolt the joints with every step you take. 

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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.