Nutrition tips for healthy joints
At Bodytonic, our osteopathy and sports massage work means we meet a lot of sportspeople and athletes, and we’ve got years of experience of treating the most common injuries. Part of our osteopathy and sports massage work is as much about prevention and healthy living as it is about rehabilitation.
As well as proper stretches and warm-ups, it’s important to consider the role of vitamins and minerals in injury prevention and recovery. Professional and amateur athletes alike can often forget about the role of nutrition in the recovery process, as their attention is often focussed instead on the more physical aspect of rehabilitation. Anyone experiencing neck pain, shoulder pain, muscle strains or aches, should always take care to consider the nutritional aspect of the healing process. In addition, injury can be prevented by a healthy and balanced diet.
How nutrition can promote healing
Our infographic provides an insight into some of the general benefits of a balanced vitamin/mineral intake. These include:
- Promoting bone strength.
- Helping muscles and tissues to heal.
- Vitamin intake can even be a catalyst in helping the body to metabolise other vitamins and minerals.
- Preventing/combatting joint or muscle inflammation.
Whilst our infographic contains five of the most common vitamins and minerals (and where you can find them), it’s also worth bearing in mind more general lifestyle/dietary trends you can introduce into your everyday life to help promote well-being, prevent injury, and of course, just ensure you’re eating right!
A balanced diet
As you can see from our graphic, a regular intake of vitamins (A, C, K, D) are just some of the common vitamins and minerals found in everyday foods. The benefits of vitamins, minerals and proteins are numerous, but it’s worth citing a few:
- Vitamin D can help the body to metabolise calcium, carbohydrates.
- Zinc can help to build the immune system.
- Iron aides the transportation of oxygen throughout the body.
- Proteins found in fish, chicken and natural dairy are broken down into amino acids which help to maintain soft tissue.
- Vitamins such as Vitamin A, and minerals such as iron, can help to aid in muscle recovery in the aftermath of a strain or injury.
A prescribed daily amount
Ensuring that you get your prescribed daily amount of vitamins, minerals and proteins can be hard, and it’s possible that you may not succeed every day. But the recommended daily amount is as follows.
Calcium – 1000mg
Iron – Men, 8mg & Women, 18mg
Vitamin A – Men, 900mcg, Women 700mcg
Vitamin C – Men, 90mg, Women 75mg
Vitamin D – 15mcg
Vitamin K – Men, 120mcg Women, 90mcg
Folic Acid – 400mcg
Potassium – 4,700mg
Many of these are easily found in our everyday essential such as fruit, vegetables, pasta, meat, fish, cereal. It’s also worth supplementing your dietary intake with vitamin and mineral supplements.
Don’t forget hydration
The fact that drinking water is absolutely essential to our overall health and well-being is often easily overlooked. Water boosts help to boost muscle energy, endurance and overall alertness (which is essential in the prevention of injury/fatigue). Water also aids the body in removing any toxins which could cause inflammation, and delivering vitamins and minerals to the soft tissues.