Don't stretch before exercise

Flexibility helps you move better. Try to stretch daily or at least three times a week. But don't do it when your muscles are cold. Do a light warm-up first, like walking for 10 minutes, to loosen up the joints, ligaments, and tendons around them.

Know your limits

It's normal to have some aching muscles after you exercise. But if you hurt for more than 48 hours, you may have overstressed your joints. Don't push so hard next time. Working through the pain may lead to an injury or damage.

Keep your bones strong

Calcium and vitamin D can help you do that. Dairy products are the best sources of calcium, but other options are green, leafy vegetables like broccoli and kale. If you don't get enough calcium from food, ask your doctor about supplements.

Ease your load

Consider your joints when lifting and carrying. Carry bags on your arms instead of with your hands to let your bigger muscles and joints support the weight.

Exercise

When it's painful and difficult just to move, the last thing you feel like doing is getting up and exercising. As unpleasant as it may sound though, exercise is vital for those who suffer from any form of stiffness, joint pain. Exercise will help control weight (an excess of which puts more strain on your joints) strengthens the muscles that support the joint, even when the cartilage is thinning, and lubricates the joints, allowing them to move more freely. When we are inactive the synovial fluid in the joints is the consistency of a thick gel, but once we get moving and warming up, the liquid becomes more viscous and can do a better job of lubricating our joints and keeping them going smoothly. Just imagine if you were to be sedentary every day, pretty soon you'd be so stiff it'd be just about impossible to move. But if you get up and move around every day, you'll get stronger and will loosen up as well.

Home joint care

We take the freedom of movement for granted, until it becomes limited. The cause of this for many people comes in the form of joint problems. Whichever you experience, there are natural remedies for joint problems to manage the pain and ease the symptoms.

1. Turmeric & Ginger Tea. Turmeric and ginger are both anti-inflammatorys, and will help with joint problems. Turmeric in particular has gotten a lot of attention lately. Its active ingredient is something called curcumin, which is a powerful antioxidant. In addition, it lowers the levels of 2 enzymes responsible for causing inflammation. You can take these in a capsule form or make a nice spicy tea to enjoy daily.

2. Epsom salt soak. Epsom salt contains magnesium sulfate which sounds kind of scary, but it's really quite a wonderful substance. A naturally occurring mineral, magnesium sulfate has been used to get relief from pain for years, namely because of its high levels of magnesium.

3. Get more magnesium (seriously). Magnesium is something our bodies need, but we can't make it ourselves. It is used in over 300 different biomechanical responses in our body. It relaxes all our muscles and nerve endings, relieving stiffness and pain. It is even part of what makes our heart beat. Not only does it relax muscles and ease pain it helps bones to mineralize. There are several ways to get more magnesium and utilize it for joint pain in particular. Really this is the clincher-as great as supplements are, they can't do everything. Eat foods that are high in magnesium, which include dark leafy greens (like spinach), nuts, and legumes (beans).

4. Lubricate With Extra Virgin Olive Oil. The very consistency of olive oil makes it seem like something that would lubricate your joints and ease joint pain, and it turns out, it actually does. The study showed that 1 ½ tablespoons is equal to 200-mg of ibuprofen. However, not every oil is created equal. Heat destroys oleocanthal, so it is necessary to use extra virgin olive oil or "cold-pressed." The ripeness of the olives at the time they were pressed also determines the level of oleocanthal-generally the stronger tasting the oil, the higher the level there is present. It can be taken internally to reap the benefits, but being high in calories consider replacing any fats, such as butter, with it in cooking instead.

5. Dandelion Leaves. Incredibly high in vitamins A and C, dandelion leaves can help repair damaged tissue and help the liver clear toxins out of the blood. Studies, although limited, have also shown anti-inflammatory properties due to the linoleic and linoleic acid in them. Linoleic is an essential fatty acid required by the body to produce prostaglandin-which basically regulates immune responses and suppresses inflammation. You can enjoy dandelion leaves in nice salad, or brew tea with them.

6. Blackstrap Molasses Drink. High in valuable minerals such as calcium, potassium, and magnesium, blackstrap molasses has been a cherished home remedy for joint problems for a number of years. Blackstrap molasses is what remains after the 3rd boiling of sugar syrup, and is nothing like the nutrient lacking refined sugars used today.

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