The start of a new year is always a good time to make resolutions and rededicate yourself to improving your joint health. As I have mentioned in prior blogs, there are several things patients can do to decrease the symptoms of osteoarthritis and improve their overall fitness and wellbeing. These include, being ever vigilant about your weight, trying to obtain a more idea body weight. With 1/3rd of the United States population obese, as defined by a body mass index of greater than 30, there is room for improvement. Increasing your exercise level to increase strength and flexibility can also go a long way towards decreasing joint pain. These are two of the biggest factors that affect the symptoms of arthritis.

Weight loss is a fairly simple matter of having fewer calories in than calories burned. While this sounds simple many factors influence a persons diet including, their overall happiness, job situations, and personal situations. Exercise becomes increasingly difficult with the increases of work, particularly in a down turning economy. But, at the start of a new year, take time to look at what you eat, how much you eat, and make a goal of increasing the number of days you exercise. By decreasing weight and increasing strength and fitness you can avoid some of the symptoms of arthritic hips and knees.

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  1. Pam Bradford

    I agree that we need to take care of our joint health. I’ve been losing weight but very slowly as the pain keeps me immobilized far too often. I do water aerobics as often as I am able. I am floundering in a Catch 22. Need to lose weight and exercise to be healthy, pain keeps me immobilized and so the weight just sits there.
    Joint and overall health is the objective, I agree. But what if you have a joint problem that few to none write about?
    There’s a joint between the sacrum and the hips that needs a lot more attention in my opinion. I’ve been managing the pain for a couple of years now but it progresses with age. I’m 61 and would like to see someone about it, but the Dr. I did finally see was absolutely unable to consider that my pelvis could be a factor. I can’t work with any doctor who can’t hear me.
    It’s frustrating to say the least.
    Do you have any articles on the Sacrum/Illiac joint and problems associated there with?
    What sort of physician would you see for this type of problem?

  2. Dr. William Barrett

    Dear Pam,
    Thanks for the comment. Problems associated with the sacrum and ilium is typically dealt with by spine surgeons as this is the lower connection of the spine to the pelvis. I agree with you this is a challenging problem when pain prevents you from exercise. The key in this situation is to zero in on the amount of calories you take in and the type of calories you take in because you will have more success decreasing your caloric intake then perhaps increasing the burning of calories, due to your pain.
    William Barrett