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Exercising and Yoga Are the Best Treatment for Arthritis


arthritis and yogaProfessor Phillip Conaghan, chair of musculoskeletal medicine at the University of Leeds, explained that the best treatment for osteoarthritis is exercise, especially yoga because it is a natural painkiller.

For treating osteoarthritis doctors usually recommend acetaminophen and other anti-inflammatory drugs, but a recent study in The Lancet shows that these drugs are unable to treat the disease no matter the dose you take.

So far, the only painkiller that has been proven to have any effect on osteoarthritis is diclofenac. Unfortunately, diclofenac has very dangerous side effects making it unusable for longer treatments.

It is a well-known fact that exercise is the best way to treat arthritis.

A recent article shows how Eddie, a sea otter from the Oregon Zoo, shoots hoops in order to deal with arthritis pain. Eddie plays basketball not to entertain the crowd, but because he has arthritis in his elbows.

Using exercising and yoga as medicine

The study shows how yoga could be an effective method to maintain active if you are the 1 in 5 adults who suffer from arthritis.

A randomized trial involving people with arthritis who practice yoga has shown that by practicing yoga they managed to improve their physical health by 20% and experience similar improvements to pain, energy mood and managing their daily activities.

Susan J. Bartlett, Ph.D., an adjunct associate professor of medicine at Johns Hopkins and associate professor at McGill University states that yoga may be the best treatment for arthritis patients due to the fact that it combines physical activity with stress management and relaxation techniques, concentrating on managing the limitation that may vary on a daily basis.

If arthritis isn’t managed properly it can affect more than your mobility. Arthritis can affect your overall health and well-being, the management of your daily activities and the quality of your life. Unfortunately, arthritis has no cure, the best way of fighting it being to stay constantly active. Despite this, statistics show that 90% of arthritis patients are less active than the public health guidelines recommend. This may be due to the fact that arthritis symptoms such as pain and stiffness prevents them from doing any exercises, but there could also be the fact that they don’t really know how to stay active.

Some people have improved their symptoms by changing their diets. Autoimmune diseases are linked to gluten sensitivity and anti-nutrients in certain plants, grains and seeds.

Exercises such as walking, swimming, tai chi, qi gong, dancing and yoga are all excellent for managing arthritis. You should talk to a personal trainer or physical therapist for advice regarding exercising. Look for local yoga classes and try to move at your own pace in fitness classes.