New Supplement for Joint Health Help

December 13, 2010 by  
Filed under featured, Health, Healthy Ageing, Vitamins & Supplements

I went to a press conference last week that along with some staggering statistics (80% of over 70’s have osteoarthritis) provided a very splendid lunch – just getting my ‘expenses’ up front, unlike our MP’s- and news of a new and unique formulation designed for maintenance of joint health.

Two doctors fronted the information, and although frankly I don’t find the medical profession to be the best informed on supplements, or nutrition, they set the case out fairly clearly. If you can avoid getting old, you can probably avoid osteoarthritis – any takers?

Osteoarthritis is a painful, often crippling, condition and the main news from the press conference was that prevention was a darn sight better than cure which involves either pain ful injections into the joint or replacement surgery.

If you have been relying on chondroitin for your joint health then the other surprising fact to emerge was that current research does not show it to be that effective and Regenovex® contains no glucosamine or chondroitin but depends instead on two natural ingredients – Natural Marine Bionovex Oil and Hyaluronic Acid.

Natural Marine Bionovex® Oil may be more familiar to you as Green Lipped Mussels (GLM) which has been popular for joint health for a number of years as it contains polyunsaturated fatty acids, including omega-3s, and is particularly rich in eicosatetraenoic acid (ETA), an omega-3 unique to GLM. ETA has been scientifically shown to have special properties to help maintain joint health and the Bionovex Oil in Regenovex has a concentration of ETA that is up to 40 times greater than in conventional GLM powders.

Marine lipids have been shown to have anti-inflammatory activity in laboratory studies and , of benefit to joint health in various clinical studies. Marine lipids have been shown in studies to inhibit both the cyclooxygenase (COX) and lipoxygenase (LOX) inflammatory pathways, which means they support your body’s normal processes to relieve discomfort. Unlike non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs – a common painkiller prescribed for osteoarthritis) marine-derived lipids do not seem to have any of the stomach or digestive problems associated with NSAID’s such as bleeding.

The other key ingredient is hyaluronic acid® (HA) and it works in a different way. It is naturally found in the body in a wide range of tissues, to cushion joints and supplementing fluid within the joint, which helps to stimulating the joints’ own HA production, supporting the strengthening of cartilage structure, and generally maintaining joint health. In people with joint problems, particularly osteoarthritis, as the cartilage becomes more and more damaged both the amount and molecular weight (or structure) of HA in the joint changes. This results in further cartilage damage, increased inflammation and a reduction in the synovial fluid function and Regenovex® helps maintain joint health by providing the joint with the type of HA it needs to supplement the synovial fluid,.

As well as helping maintain the health of joints and the supplement claims to also tackle the two main causes of joint wear and tear:

• Physical Damage
• Internally released harmful chemicals which affect joint comfort, which can happen after physical damage, wear and tear or aging.

Glucosamine and chondroitin can be helpful for joint health but they are only effective with one aspect of joint discomfort. The combination of Bionovex oil and Hyaluronic in Regenovex® help to harness the nutritional benefits of both hyaluronic acid and omega-3 fatty acids to help maintain joint health.

In a recent trial, 74% of users who took the one-a-day capsules who noticed a difference did so within 30 days and further trials and a scientific study are currently being undertaken It comes in three forms: one-a-day capsules, . a gel for targeted application to individual joints and a flexible patch which continues to work for up to 12 hours and is ideal for day and night time use.

CAUTION: because it contains marine oil it should not be used by anyone who has an allergy to shellfish.

Natural Help For Arthritis from Rosehips

June 9, 2010 by  
Filed under featured, Healthy Ageing

Natural Help For Arthritis from Rosehips
I am showing my age here, but as a child at school we used to collect rose hips every autumn and were paid a vast sum – a penny a pound I think – to hand them in.  Child labour laws no doubt prevent that now, but with their very high level of antioxidants and vitamin C they have a range of uses – and a new one is in treating arthritis.
With 1 in 4 adults being diagnosed with either osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis, and it accounting for 1 in 5 GP consultations, it is obviously a serious problem with up to 9 million people being affected in some way.  Trials have confirmed the effectiveness of rosehips to help with the side effects of arthritis such as inflammation, reduced movement, and associated pain.  Research supports the benefit of taking a rosehip supplement whether you suffer from the general wear-and-tear, or the potentially more crippling rheumatoid arthritis, which occurs when the immune system attacks the joints.
Three short-term clinical trials confirmed the benefits of rosehips as an effective pain reliever in those suffering from osteoarthritis and additional research in Denmark and Germany established that those with rheumatoid arthritis showed a marked reduction in the number of joints experiencing pain or discomfort.
We don’t know exactly why rosehips benefit those with arthritis but rosehips in general are known to help maintain a healthy heart, and to lower cholesterol levels. We do know that because rosehips are an ultra-rich source of anti-inflammatory glycosides, which along with the antioxidant properties they have seem to beneficial to those experiencing joint problems, such as arthritis.
If you want to give it a try, and I am certainly doing so, then there is a new Rosehip Extract supplement from Lifeplan that provides 100mg of rosehip extract, equivalent to 2000mg of dried rosehip fruit.  These high strength capsules are approved by the Vegan Society and should be in your local health store, if not visit the website at www.lifeplan.co.uk and don’t forget the other two key arthritis elements: a good diet and regular exercise.   An excellent book for arthritis sufferers is ‘Say No To Arthritis’ by Patrick Holford which will give you plenty of tips and ideas on coping – and alleviating – the condition.

rosehip-extract

I am showing my age here, but as a child at school we used to collect rose hips every autumn and were paid a vast sum – a penny a pound I think – to hand them in. Child labour laws no doubt prevent that now, but with their very high level of antioxidants and vitamin C they have a range of uses – and a new one is in treating arthritis.

With 1 in 4 adults being diagnosed with either osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis, and it accounting for 1 in 5 GP consultations, it is obviously a serious problem with up to 9 million people being affected in some way. Trials have confirmed the effectiveness of rosehips to help with the side effects of arthritis such as inflammation, reduced movement, and associated pain. Research supports the benefit of taking a rosehip supplement whether you suffer from the general wear-and-tear, or the potentially more crippling rheumatoid arthritis, which occurs when the immune system attacks the joints.

Three short-term clinical trials confirmed the benefits of rosehips as an effective pain reliever in those suffering from osteoarthritis and additional research in Denmark and Germany established that those with rheumatoid arthritis showed a marked reduction in the number of joints experiencing pain or discomfort.

We don’t know exactly why rosehips benefit those with arthritis but rosehips in general are known to help maintain a healthy heart, and to lower cholesterol levels. We do know that because rosehips are an ultra-rich source of anti-inflammatory glycosides, which along with the antioxidant properties they have seem to beneficial to those experiencing joint problems, such as arthritis.

If you want to give it a try, and I am certainly doing so, then there is a new Rosehip Extract supplement from Lifeplan that provides 100mg of rosehip extract, equivalent to 2000mg of dried rosehip fruit. These high strength capsules are approved by the Vegan Society and should be in your local health store, if not visit the website at www.lifeplan.co.uk and don’t forget the other two key arthritis elements: a good diet and regular exercise. An excellent book for arthritis sufferers is ‘Say No To Arthritis’ by Patrick Holford which will give you plenty of tips and ideas on coping – and alleviating – the condition.

Flip Flops and Osteoarthritis

March 31, 2010 by  
Filed under Health

flip-flop

If you suffer from osteoarthritis in your knees then there may be no need to spend a lot of money on expensive specialist shoes. A study by Rush University Medical Center has found that flip-flops and sneakers with flexible soles are easier on the knees than clogs or even special walking shoes.

Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis and a significant source of disability and impaired quality of life. A higher-than-normal load on the knees during walking is a hallmark of the disease, associated with both the severity of osteoarthritis and its progression.

Dr. Najia Shakoor, a rheumatologist at Rush and the primary author of the study, said “Traditionally, footwear has been engineered to provide maximum support and comfort for the foot, with little attention paid to the biomechanical effects on the rest of the leg but the shoes we wear have a substantial impact on the load on the knee joints, particularly when we walk.” They analyzed the gait of patients with symptoms of osteoarthritis while they walked barefoot and with four popular shoe types: Dansko clogs, which are often worn by those who have to be on their feet much of the day; stability shoes; Puma sneakers; and flip-flops.

The loads on the knee joints differed significantly depending on the footwear. For the clogs and stability shoes, the loads on the knee joints were up to 15 percent greater than with the flat walking shoes, flip-flops or barefoot walking. Knee loading was roughly the same whether the subject wore flips-flops or walked barefoot.

Several aspects of footwear affect the joint loading: heel height and stiffness of the sole being the most important. Earlier studies have shown that barefoot walking is associated with lower knee loads than walking with conventional footwear. Flip-flops and sneakers are flat, flexible and lightweight and seem to mimic the mechanics of walking with bare feet.

Clogs and stability shoes that are usually suggested to provide appropriate cushioning and support were shown to actually increase the loading on the knee joints, as opposed to shoes with less ‘support,’ flatter heels and more flexibility. But, bear in mind that flip flops could contribute to falls because of their loose-fitting design so maybe seek out some fancy sneakers instead.

Glucosamine That Melts On Your Tongue

March 16, 2010 by  
Filed under Health

flexi-melt

Many adults take glucosamine to treat symptoms relating to osteoarthritis, joint stress and injury and in order to protect joints and connective tissue as we age. Glucosamine is an amino sugar that is produced in the body from glucose, and is essential for the production of cartilage and synovial fluid. It is normally taken as a supplement in tablet form, but as the suggested daily dose is 1500mg not everyone is happy with swallowing fairly large tablets.

If that’s you, then a new form of glucosamine might be the answer.

Flexi-melt™ is a high purity form of Glucosamine Hydrochloride in the form of a natural citrus flavoured tablet that Flexi-melt that utilises, a unique ‘Soft-melt’ system, which means that tablets feel smooth on the tongue before quickly disintegrating in the mouth. Each Flexi-melt tablet contains 750mg of glucosamine hydrochloride, with a high percentage (83%) of actual glucosamine. .

There are two forms of glucosamine and it helps to know which one your supplement contains. Glucosamine sulphate or glucosamine hydrochloride: glucosamine hydrochloride is a smaller molecule than sulphate and contains a higher percentage (83%) of glucosamine than the sulphate (65%). This means that you need to take less glucosamine hydrochloride to achieve the recommended daily dose of 1500mg. Compared to glucosamine sulphate, glucosamine hcl does not contain potassium salts which makes it a better choice if you are on any medication for hypertension.

Dr Patricia Mcnair specializes in Medicine for the Elderly at Milford Hospital, Surrey, England backs up the claims for glucosamine: “Studies have shown that glucosamine can help to keep the joints healthy and may, for example, reduce the pain of osteoarthritis of the knee. And unlike some other common pain relievers it has a good safety profile “

The recommended daily dose of Flexi-melt is two tablets a day and you should find it in leading pharmacies and health food shops. If not, go to the website at www.flexi-melt.co.uk

Do copper bracelets really work?

October 25, 2009 by  
Filed under Medical Research & Studies

copper-bracelet

I know plenty of people who wear copper bracelets or magnetic wrist bands for their arthritis and swear by them but a new a new study led by a University of York academic says that is all nonsense. This treatment is often called Magnotherapy.

Previous studies have found they relieved the pain but this one showed that both magnetic and copper bracelets were ineffective for managing pain, stiffness and physical function in osteoarthritis.

Stewart Richmond, a Research Fellow in the Department of Health Sciences at the University of York, puts any benefit down to a placebo effect. He said “People tend to buy them when they are in a lot of pain, then when the pain eases off over time they attribute this to the device.”

He also issues a caution about the use of magnet therapy, particularly for those with osteoarthritis, and to think carefully before spending large sums of money.  As he points out, “magnets removed from disused speakers are much cheaper, but you would first have to believe that they could work.”

Cognitive therapy helps insomnia & pain

September 14, 2009 by  
Filed under Health

getting-out-of-bed

Sufferers from osteoarthritis often experience sleeplessness and around 60 percent report feeling pain at night due to their condition. Now some new research suggests cognitive behavioural therapy could be an effective way of dealing with the problem.

The Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine has reported on a study done at the University of Washington, USA that specifically tested behavioural therapy on patients with arthritis. The majority of the test subjects were female, so it can’t be deemed conclusive for men as well, but the older adults in the study initially reported sleeping 21 minutes longer per night on average and 27 minutes longer a year after treatment.

That might not sound like much, but for anyone who has known the exhaustion of sleep deprivation then any increase is a bonus. Further, the patients also experienced a significant reduction in arthritis pain compared to those in a control group.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is a well established method for helping facilitate behavioural change and attitude. For the study the subjects took part in for two months in weekly two-hour group classes led by an experienced clinical psychologist. They were put on a strict schedule of bedtimes and waking times, beginning with the amount of time they were actually sleeping told to lie in bed awake no longer than 15 minutes and to engage in no activities in bed other than sleep and sex. If they began to spend more of their time in bed asleep, their hours of sleep were increased by a maximum of one-half hour each week.

Cognitive restructuring techniques helped participants change unrealistic beliefs and irrational fears regarding sleep or lack of it. They also received relaxation training and instruction about other factors that might affect their sleep, such as getting enough sunlight and exercise and avoiding alcohol and caffeine.

They kept both sleep and pain logs and for the majority in the study there was a definite, and continued, improvement in both these areas. since most of the participants were women.

Benefits of Tai Chi for arthritic knees

November 3, 2008 by  
Filed under featured, Fitness & Sport, Healthy Ageing

Well anyone who is a regular reader, or has heard me speak, knows I am a great fan of Tai Chi for so many reasons. It is a traditional Chinese martial art that combines meditation with slow, gentle movements, deep breathing, and relaxation and any age or fitness can undertake it – just think of those elderly people you see doing it in the public parks in China. You can do it at home in 10 minutes, get a video to teach you or – best option of all is to find a qualified teacher and join a group. You will improve your fitness, helps build bone strength, lower your blood pressure, reduce stress levels and cultivate calm centredness. All good things, and now there is another one to add to the list – it can help if you have arthritic knees.

The American College of Rheumatology has just reported on a study done in Boston which found that patients with osteoarthritis of the knee benefited more from Tai Chi than from the traditional stretching exercises that such patients are usually given. Osteoarthritis sufferers experience interlinked pain, muscle weakness, and structural damage and where Tai Chi really scored was that it improved pain scores THREE times better than stretching. Researchers also concluded that the meditation, deep breathing, and relaxation involved may also benefit patients and it is recommended by the Arthritis Foundation. Personal recommendation is the best way to find a good teacher, so ask around your local area, health stores and alternative health centres can be good sources. The Tai Chi Union For Great Britain can offer you a register of practitioners throughout the country at www.taichiunion.com or in Scotland you could contact the East Winds School of T’ai Chi Chu’an at www.eastwinds.co.uk. If you are looking in the London area then I can personally recommend Jon Wallwork as a wonderful teacher and he can be contacted by email at jw@jonwallwork.co.uk

Ayurvedic herb relieves osteoarthritis

It now seems that an Ayurvedic herb known as the ‘Indian Frankincense’ can dramatically improve the symptoms of the most common form of arthritis — osteoarthritis. No surprise to me as I have found all forms of herbal medicine to be effective, whether English, Chinese or Ayurvedic, but what is amazing is that treatment appears to provide relief within just one week.

I discovered this in the journal Arthritis Research & Therapy where scientists from the University of California at Davis published their research conclusions when they tested an extract dubbed AKBA (3-O-acetyl -11-keto-beta-boswellic acid) from the herb Boswellia serrata on 70 patients with osteoarthritis of the knee. Boswellia is the gummy resin of the boswellia tree, which is native to India, and used for centuries by Ayurvedic doctors as it contains anti-inflammatory terpenoids called boswellic acids. Boswellia is often included in arthritis remedies, and has been used for thousands of years by Ayurvedic practitioners.

The research subjects were suffering from pain, limited movement, stiffness and other symptoms of osteoarthritis, which most commonly affects weight- bearing joints like knees and hips, as well as the hands, wrists, feet and spine. Symptoms were relieved in about seven days in this study — which is the first to show that an enriched extract of Bowellia serrata be used as a successful treatment in humans. The researchers concluded that its anti-inflammatory properties can be an effective treatment for osteoarthritis of the knee and was shown to have no major adverse effects in osteoarthritis patients and so was safe for human consumption and even for long-term use.