Joint Health in Menopause

joint Oct 31, 2019

Osteoarthritis was once thought of as a disease of wear and tear alone. Today there is increasing evidence that estrogen influences the health of your joints and may be a contributing factor towards the development of osteoarthritis in at-risk individuals. It is thought that estrogen plays a role in the maintenance of articular tissues and of the joint itself, by reducing inflammatory cells from building up in the synovial fluid surrounding the joint. It's these inflammatory cells that start to damage the joint when they are left unchecked. 


These are some of the other factors that will put you at a higher risk of joint issues:

  • Being overweight: this increases joint wear and tear, especially the weight-bearing joints such as ankle, knees, and hips.
  • Having diabetes.
  • Being inactive. The old saying ‘use it or lose it’ certainly fits here
  • Overuse of isolated joints (RSI). We have all heard about tennis elbow.
  • If you have ever been involved in a fall or accident that impacted certain joints.
  • Certain infections are linked with joint breakdowns such as staphylococcus aureus, streptococci, and gonococci. Viruses such as Epstein Barr is also linked with joint issues.


If your joints are starting to flare, I highly recommend you find a team of local practitioners. I personally use a combination of chiropractic, acupuncture and massage however osteopathy, physiotherapy and exercise physiology could also be beneficial. I cannot emphasise the need for good and regular physical therapy. I still go when I’m not in pain because I want to maintain my feeling of wellness. Prevention is much better than a cure. 


Diet plays a huge role in joint health. Beneficial fats found in seafood, eggs, coconut, and olives all help lubricant the joint and prevent wear and tear. They are also anti-inflammatory which can help reduce the build-up of inflammatory, damage-causing substances. Turmeric is another anti-inflammatory food that is fabulous for reducing joint pain. Unfortunately, it's poorly absorbed as a food substance so I would consider adding it as a supplement. This section wouldn’t be complete without mentioning water. Dehydration exacerbates everything, including joint pain.


Supplements for joint health

  • Fish oil especially one higher in EPA for its anti-inflammatory qualities.
  • Rosehip, natural vitamin C and GOPO are good for reducing joint inflammation.
  • Anti-inflammatory herbs: turmeric, boswellia, ginger, cat’s claw, and devil’s claw.
  • Probiotics—yes, probiotics. There is research linking dysbiosis to joint pain.



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