Eric is a 45 year old man who is overweight. He notices recurring joint pain after activity and can’t figure out why he’s experiencing this. He hasn’t had an injury to cause this pain and hasn’t participated in any rigorous activity lately. After putting up with this consistent pain for a few months, he decides to see a specialist. After examining Eric and running some tests, Eric’s doctor recognizes it may be his weight that’s causing his joint pain. After explaining that this could be what is causing his pain, Eric’s doctor gives him some advice on how to lose some weight. With new exercise and nutrition ideas, Eric leaves with motivation to change his life.
Weight has a large impact on the health of your joints. Being overweight increases your risk for osteoarthritis, here’s how: excess weight on your joints puts additional stress on weight-bearing joints. It can also increase your risk of inflammation at your joints, which puts additional stress on them. According to Harvard Health, this is the impact weight has on your joints:
“When you walk across level ground, the force on your knees is the equivalent of 1½ times your body weight. That means a 200-pound man will put 300 pounds of pressure on his knees with each step. Add an incline, and the pressure is even greater: the force on each knee is two to three times your body weight when you go up and down stairs, and four to five times your body weight when you squat to tie a shoelace or pick up an item you dropped.”
Eric watched his nutrition for the following months and incorporated some low-impact exercises into his daily routine. Slowly but surely, he started to lose the weight and felt some improvement in his joint pain. As he became active, he strengthened his joints and started to lessen the pressure on them. He continued to create healthy habits and started to feel more like himself as time went on.
Don’t let joint pain keep you from living a happy and healthy life. If you’re experiencing this, it could be due to a number of things. Dr. Nelson can help diagnose your pain and get you on the path towards recovery. Give us a call to schedule your appointment!