Arthritis – Glutathione to the rescue!
Glutathione isn’t very well known but it’s a vital nutrient if you want to lead an active life with healthy joints.
As a population we are now living longer than ever so living healthier is a big issue. Taking steps towards a better future means taking care of your joints and bones and finding ways to combat the early signs of arthritis is essential if you want to hang on to your mobility and flexibility.
Here are some helpful natural dietary, lifestyle and supplement suggestions to help you protect your health and longevity.
National Arthritis Week is fully underway and aims to help raise awareness of the common condition that affects over 120 million people in the EU alone.
There were over 100 different types of arthritis, the most common being:
- osteoarthritis (wear and tear on the joints)
- rheumatoid arthritis (an autoimmune condition whereby the immune system attacks joint tissue)
- gout, where crystals form within the joint tissue, causing pain and inflammation
These joint conditions all cause pain and inflammation with the joints making movement painful and in making exercise challenging.
Exploring natural ways to dampen down the pain and reduce the inflammation are necessary steps in managing your arthritic symptoms.
Bare facts on Osteoarthritis
Symptoms of osteoarthritis include inflammation and pain around the joint, damage to the cartilage causing stiffness, locking and friction within the joint. Osteoarthritis involves the breakdown and gradual loss of cartilage within a joint.
When the cartilage degenerates, friction and wearing down of the bones occurs leading to painful and sore joints. This debilitating condition can result in severely limited mobility, particularly in the major weight-bearing joints like the hips and knees.
Vitamin C for calming joint inflammation
One solid supplement worth taking for osteoarthritis is vitamin C as this nutrient helps to protect synovial fluid found in cartilage which functions to cushion the joint spaces.
Vitamin C also helps to mop up the oxidative stress caused by free-radical molecules generated during the natural inflammatory process. If left unchecked these free-radicals can actually do more harm to the cartilage and the surrounding joint tissue increasing pain and inflammation, which is why people with arthritis often suffer from ongoing swelling, pain and inflammation.
Vitamin C helps to break this cycle and encourages natural healing to take place. The problem with many forms of vitamin C supplements (often the cheaper ones) is that taking high doses often triggers stomach discomfort and a runny tummy.
One way to bypass this is to look for a liposomal form of vitamin C, such as Altrient C, which doesn’t cause stomach upset because it gets absorbed more quickly. This is much more effective so you don’t need to ingest such a high dose.
Spotlight on Rheumatoid Arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis is the second most common form of arthritis and it’s three times more likely to affect women than men.
Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease, meaning that your own immune cells have become confused and are attacking the synovial membrane found surrounding your cartilage, so your joints become a place where constant inflammation takes place, which eventually leads to cartilage damage, joint destruction and deformation
Fighting off arthritis - Glutathione to the rescue
As we become older there are certain vitamins and minerals that we naturally need more of and glutathione is one nutrient that you definitely want to become aware of if you suffer from rheumatoid arthritis.
Glutathione is the body's most abundant, natural antioxidant which strengthens the immune system and helps offset the physical effects and problems of aging.
Unfortunately, our glutathione levels become rapidly depleted as we age, leading to a build-up of free radicals and inflammation within our cells. Adequate levels of glutathione are needed to help the immune system fight off free-radical damage, infection, and illness.
Glutathione really comes into its own as a superior supplement for rheumatoid arthritis with its ability to help unscramble and regulate immune cells preventing them from attacking your own body tissues and cells and transferring their resources to get on with their real job of combating infections.
This creates a window for inflammation in the joint spaces to settle down and healing to take place.
Maintaining supple joints
Although arthritis is a progressive degenerative disease with the right dietary and lifestyle changes and with the added bonus of the right nutritional supplements you can help to reduce your symptoms, reduce cartilage breakdown and manage your pain and inflammation much better.
Maintaining a healthy weight also helps to ensure that no unnecessary load is put onto weakened joints and gentle rather than impactful exercise can help to keep the joints moving.
Written by Susie Perry Debice BSC Hons, Dip ION Food Scientist and Nutritional Therapist
- By Jackie Newson
- BSc (Hons) in Nutritional Therapy
Jackie has been writing for a range of health publications since graduating as a nutritional therapist from Westminster University in 2008. In addition to producing health and nutrition workshops, Jackie is also an experienced assessor and enjoys the opportunity to help other students of nutrition to achieve their goals. In her role as an experienced nutritional therapist, Jackie offers individualised advice on a variety of health conditions. She believes wholeheartedly in the power of healthy nutritious food, supported with high quality supplementation to achieve optimal health. Jackie is a great believer in the power of positive thinking and attributes much of her enthusiasm and sense of well-being to the wonderful people in her life, a healthy diet and yoga which she practices regularly.