An Alternative Approach to Joint Health
By Georgia Tetlow, MD and Jill Maddock
Our joints are very crucial to everyday life, every move we make is made because of them. Do your joints ever give you signals, do they ever “talk?” We can all benefit by becoming aware of these signals and investigating some tools and strategies to take care of this important part of ourselves. Our recent blog, Take Charge of Your Own Health: What is Ayurveda? explains an alternative approach and how it can be used to prevent or reduce the effects of many ailments. Integrative medicine aligns with the principles of Ayurveda because both fundamentally believe in prevention and the importance of each of our body’s systems. If we ignore the signs that our body may give us such as talking joints, these signs may eventually manifest into a larger issue.
Our joints mostly consist of empty space, and are connected to many different tissues and fats within the body. Understanding the connections between each system in our body is valuable. The health of our joints are greatly affected by the quality of the fats that surround and lubricate them as well as the quality of our surrounding tissues. The quality of these fats and tissues is traced back to our digestive health and metabolic “fire” as explained in an alternative, Ayurvedic approach. Yes, this means that your joint health can rely on the nutrition of your tissues and digestive health.
An Ayurvedic approach traces joint ailments back to the digestive tract. There are two scenarios that can lead to joint inflammation. The first is toxins from the digestive tract (most likely partially digested or poor quality food) that Ayurveda believes travel to and settle in the joints, in the form of inflammation and swelling. This is why colon health is the foundation in this alternate medical system. Improving the health of our gut is an important step in addressing joint inflammation.
The second way that joints can be negatively affected through inadequate nutrition. For example, if there are not enough healthy omega 3’s circulating in our system, Ayurveda suggests our joints will become dry and start to pop or crack. Even if you are eating well, your body may need support to digest and absorb certain vital nutrients. At PIM, we offer a diagnostic stool study that examines what your body is absorbing and what it can’t absorb. We also offer Functional Nutrition appointments to support you along the way!
The good news is that these processes that have led to impairment can be undone! If your joint health has been compromised from GI toxins, the first step is confirm this with lab testing and address your individual situation. We recommend working with a healthcare provider for this process. Schedule a FREE 20 minute consultation with a PIM provider today to find how we can help you in your first step to achieving wellness through a natural solution. After an initial evaluation, we want to continue to support you and your overall gut health through diet, supplement (botanicals, herbals and others), appropriate exercise, stretches and movement, as well as topicals for your joints such as Banyan Botanicals Joint Balm that can act as both a treatment and preventive.
Interested in connecting with PIM? Register for one of our upcoming events - FREE Group Classes at Cabrini University ( RSVP online) OR Nutrition Classes with our very own Rachel Hershberger, MS, CNS, LDN, tickets just $45 at sign up (limited to 8 participants for individual attention, registered participant only, no walkins, please).
If you or your loved one has ongoing stress, mood or hormone imbalance, or they are suffering from a chronic illness, please consider scheduling a 20 minute free consultation or an appointment with Lauren Houser, MS, MSN, CRNP or Annmarie McManus, MMSc, PA-C, PT, IFMCP.