Is your osteoarthritis still causing you pain? Maybe it’s time to try something different.
Only half of people treated with medicine for osteoarthritis of the knee get a modest reduction in pain--and usually without better function of the knee. But a recent study published in The Journal of the American Medical Association shows that losing weight with diet and exercise can help on both fronts.
Diet Plus Exercise Scored Best
About 400 overweight or obese adults aged 55 and over with mild or moderate osteoarthritis of the knee completed the study. They were divided into three groups at random and followed a low-calorie diet, an exercise program, or both for 18 months.
Those in the “diet plus exercise” group lost more weight than those in the “exercise” group and fared the best. They lost 23 pounds on average and had better scores for pain, function, and mobility than their peers overall. But improvements in these areas were also found among those who lost 10 percent or more of body weight, regardless of group.
Tips to Relieve Arthritis Pain
In addition to losing weight, try these tips for easing arthritis stiffness and pain:
- Get regular physical activity, such as daily walking or swimming in a heated pool.
- Take your medicine as prescribed and see your doctor regularly.
- Rest and put ice packs on sore joints.
Taking your medicine as prescribed is important. Talk to your Rite Aid Pharmacist about your medication questions or concerns.
“Arthritis Advice.” National Institute on Aging. Last Updated December 22, 2015. www.nia.nih.gov/health/publication/arthritis-advice.
“Effects of Intensive Diet and Exercise on Knee Joint Loads, Inflammation, and Clinical Outcomes Among Overweight and Obese Adults With Knee Osteoarthritis: The IDEA Randomized Clinical Trial.” SP Messier et al. JAMA Sep. 25, 2013, vol. 310, no. 12, pp. 1263-73, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24065013.
“Living with Arthritis: Health Information Basics for You and Your Family.” National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. July 2014. www.niams.nih.gov/Health_Info/Arthritis/default.asp.