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It seems that moving around freely and easily is a luxury so many of us take for granted. Such simple moves like bending, kneeling or even walking can became a nightmare and the pleasure of moving just a daydream. The cause of all this pain most often is a condition called - arthritis.
There are many forms of arthritis, and each of it with a different cause. Rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, septic and gouty arthritis all have similar negative effects on the joints but vary significantly in their immediate causes. While the first two are caused by your own immune system that is just attacking own body, septic arthritis usually develops after a trauma and gouty arthritis is simply put - a deposition of uric acid crystals in the joint that results in subsequent inflammation. But almost half of arthritis known to affect people is – “osteoarthritis” or “arthrosis”, a degenerative disease found in epidemic proportion among elderly people. Just to put it in numbers according to recent statistics arthritis is number one cause of disability in the US, with every third person over 45 and almost half of us at 60+ developing this condition. Arthritis in its various forms posts a huge challenge on mankind, totaling 46 million suffering people in US alone and up to half a million knee-joint replacement surgeries yearly! And that’s not it. With the current “development trends” the future doesn’t hold good news either. An estimated 67 million of Americans aged 18 years or older are projected to have doctor-diagnosed arthritis, by 2030.

But enough with the facts. Anyway, most importnat is what can we do about it actually?
Well, first of all, most forms of arthritis are closely linked to genetic factors. Can you fight genetics? The answer will make pessimists joyful. Not really. BUT the thing is that regardless of the fact that “bad” genetics implies a higher risk of developing this disease it does not necessarily mean you will have it. Your grandparents and grand-grand parents all died from one condition or the other so your higher risks lie in those areas but that just it and nothing more.

Now, let’s start going through stuff you are really responsible of…
First according to statistics, a few tens of pounds over your normal weight will make you twice more vulnerable to any joint problem because of more weight the body has to bear all day long. Second to consider, is “car-office-car-home” lifestyle that will make you even more vulnerable to trauma and unexpected stress on your joints due to lack of exercise and engagement. Remember, if you don’t use it, than you don’t need it, and that’s exactly how you body “understands” it. Of course, any overdose of physical activity will also do more harm than good, but that’s much more seldom to occur in real life. Next is our all-time enemy, the so called “SAD” diet, the one that leaves your body in a constant low-energy state between meals and stimulant intakes. Basically the more you eat the more your body lacks what it really needs. You will end up with a weaker immune system unable neither to cope with infections nor everyday attacks on your body. Modern lifestyle related stress and other negative influences like radiation, air and water pollutants and thousands of toxic substances surrounding us in our “progressive” environment will usually finish the rest of the job. And than is just a matter of time until you become those daunting statistics.

So, to make a long story short, there is no guarantee and there is no ultimate answer. But as you noticed going through most of the risk factors, there are many things you can do and many things you can change. It’s up to you to live a more conscious and active life and enjoy its side effects in the form of well-being and better health. Or, you can choose to flow effortlessly down the mainstream through that passive couch survival, taking pain killers when it really hurts and candy when it’s a bit better. Both ways have their pro’s and con’s and it’s up to you to decide which way is yours.
Statistical source: … tics.htm#5
Author: Ion Iatco