“Exercise is King. Nutrition is Queen. Put them together and you’ve got a kingdom.” – Jack LaLanne, Fitness and Nutrition Expert
An eternal truth of being human is that we must eat. Another truth is that we must move. Together, food and movement are the most basic essentials that keep us alive and, we hope, healthy, as well.
We’ve all heard sayings such as, “You are what you eat” and “Let food be your medicine, your medicine will be your food.” That last one was Hippocrates, by the way. But how many of us do little or nothing to regulate what we eat and how much?
And, when it comes to movement – exercise, actually – how many of us are less than consistent?
Is it any wonder, then, how many of us needlessly suffer a wide variety of physical issues, many of them accompanied by pain?
What We Eat and What We Do Can Allow Us to Avoid Pain
Orthopedic specialists and surgeons understand the connection between diet and movement, and the health of the body’s various joints.
According to one group of orthopedic physicians,
“Your everyday routine can have a big impact on the health and longevity of your joints. For example, choosing foods that build bone density, strengthen connective tissue and reduce inflammation can help you prevent injuries and preserve your joints for a long, active life.”
And this is backed up by the specialists at Harvard Medical School,
“One of the most powerful tools to combat inflammation comes not from the pharmacy, but from the grocery store. ‘Many experimental studies have shown that components of foods or beverages may have anti-inflammatory effects,’ says Dr. Frank Hu, professor of nutrition and epidemiology in the Department of Nutrition at the Harvard School of Public Health.
Choose the right anti-inflammatory foods, and you may be able to reduce your risk of illness. Consistently pick the wrong ones, and you could accelerate the inflammatory disease process.”
Another type of pain that can also be life-threatening is the pain of severe hypertension or high blood pressure.
In many instances, someone suffering from hypertension can begin to experience recurring chest pains that are the result of microvascular angina. Although it can have many causes, the pain is triggered either by a spasm in the tiny arteries within the heart muscle, by their failure to dilate and increase blood flow in response to stress, or a combination of both.
There are several possible causes, or risk factors, of hypertension, including genetics. However, some of the most common are preventable including:
- Being overweight or obese
- Not being physically active
- Too much salt (sodium) in the diet
- Too little potassium
- Drinking too much alcohol
- Using tobacco
And there are other effects of a poor diet, according to Everyday Health,
“The hidden cause of common symptoms such as fatigue and muscle aches could be a nutrient deficiency. You may think nutrient deficiencies are a thing of the past, experienced only by sailors on long sea voyages. But even today, it’s possible to lack some of the essential nutrients your body needs to function optimally.”
In addition to changing your diet to prevent unnecessary pain, your choices can also help treat pain.
For example, cherries, blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, cranberries, and strawberries contain anthocyanins, which is an inflammation-reducing compound. These berries not only help reduce inflammation but they contain many nutrients which help prevent certain diseases.
Fish such as salmon contain healthy fats and are rich in Omega-3 acids, which is also great for fighting inflammation.
And leafy greens such as spinach, bok choy, kale, and brussels sprouts are healthy choices in themselves, but they also contain a property called sulforaphane, which is a compound that’s known to block enzymes linked to joint destruction and inflammation.
When Diet and Exercise Aren’t Quite Enough
While a healthy, low-fat, low-sodium diet is a good option for everyone, and working out or exercising regularly is a proven health supporter, they won’t prevent all pain.
There are times when we can experience acute pain that can be treated or dissipates on its own. Then there is chronic pain that can last for months. It is this latter type of pain that tends to be the most aggravating and, in many cases, the most debilitating.
At Pain and Performance Solutions, we specialize in diagnosing, locating, and treating a wide variety of chronic pain issues in athletes and others.
Because there is such a diverse range of possible causes, it is essential to conduct a thorough assessment before considering any specific therapy or treatment. Issue ranging from upper or lower back pain to chronic neck pain, joint pain, and others can often be treated effectively with different therapies and techniques
Depending on the location and type of pain you are experiencing, we can implement treatment using therapies such as Anatomy in Motion, or AiM, Active Release Technique®, Neurokinetic Therapy™ (NKT), and Proprioceptive – Deep Tendon Reflex, or P-DTR®.
We Want to Know About Your Pain Issues
During your initial consultation and assessment at Pain and Performance Solutions, we will learn all we can about your present pain and condition, along with any history of discomfort, as well as your current level of activity.
Treating and relieving your pain starts once we understand where and how your pain started.
A full examination will help us determine which form of treatment is best suited to get you on your road to recovery. Your trust in us is key, as is your honesty. Ultimately, getting your body healthy and working properly is the only way to achieve total recovery.
Our goal is to work through the sequence of pain and dysfunction in order to get your body healthy and working properly and to achieve total recovery. Don’t hesitate to reach out. We are here to help and will answer any questions that you may have.