Lose Excess Weight to Relieve Knee Pain

Diet and weight: young woman with a scale; she is happy about the success

Medically reviewed in September 2021

Knees ache? Make a promise to lose 1 pound.

Yes, you heard right. Just 1 pound could mean a lot to your knees. If you are overweight or obese, losing 1 pound feels more like losing 4 pounds to this all-important joint. Here's why.

Extra Weight and Your Gait
When you carry excess weight, your gait changes to accommodate your size and help you keep your balance. Often, these gait changes involve placing a disproportionate amount of stress on already strained knees. That's why losing weight -- even as little as 1 pound -- helps give your knees a much-needed break. Losing weight can even help reduce your risk of knee osteoarthritis.

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