Another Reason to Keep a New Year’s Resolution

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The parties have ended, the wrapping paper is being recycled and people everywhere are resolving to do something differently this year.  According to the Journal of Clinical Psychology, the number one resolution of 2012 was to lose weight.  For some, they hope to fit into a bikini by spring break, others have the desire to fit into the clothes they wore 10 years ago.  But many people should consider losing weight to help avoid the progression of and pain from osteoarthritis.

Research has shown that weight is a factor not only in the progression of osteoarthritis, but also in its development. The reason is that for every pound you gain, your knees gain three to four pounds of added stress. Over time, the stress of excess body weight can cause the cartilage that cushions the knee to break down – in other words, osteoarthritis.

Yes, there are thin people with arthritis, and heavy people with healthy joints. But overall, the chance of developing arthritis in your joints is strongly associated with your body weight.

Losing weight may not reverse the damage that has been done to a joint, but research has shown that even moderate weight losses can have a dramatic effect on the relief of joint pain.

So if you find yourself overweight and with arthritis, make it a goal this year to achieve a healthy weight.  Take small steps and go slow, but by the end of 2014 you may find you are healthy and have less joint pain. Low-impact activities, including cycling, swimming and aerobics are good choices to help get fit and lose pounds. These activities can raise your heart rate to boost cardiovascular fitness, while not placing such demands on your joints.

If you have concerns about joint pain or osteoarthritis, call Syracuse Orthopedic Specialists at 315-251-3100.  Our expert team can address your physical needs and help determine the best course of treatment. 

 Have a happy and healthy new year!