Wear and tear is a part and parcel of an athlete’s journey of fitness. Lifting heavy weights can put pressure on your joints which can lead to inflammation and joint pain. You can lift a lighter, but it may not be enough for an athlete’s routine. Having a balanced diet may not be providing the essential nutrients required to combat inflammation and pain.
It is important for athletes to include foods that protect joints, in their diet. To help you recover faster and get back on track and in the gym, consider supplements to joint movement. Including such foods and supplements in your diet will help to strengthen bones, rebuild cartilage, and reduce inflammation.
Here are some foods for athlete’s joint health:
- Fatty fish: Coldwater fish are a great source of omega 3 fatty acids, which is essential for our health. Omega 3 fatty acids can reduce inflammation in your body, but it also improves functions of your brain and lowers the risk of any heart diseases, diabetes and various other health problems. Omega 3 is found in fishes like tuna, salmon, halibut, etc.
- Nuts and Seeds: Various nuts like walnuts, almonds and various seeds like flax seeds are an excellent source of Omega-3 fatty acids. Even a small portion of various nuts and seeds such as chia seeds or pumpkin seeds everyday can help in reducing inflammation in your joints and connective tissues.
- Bone broth: Bone broth contains glucosamine, chondroitin, calcium and amino acids; all of which help in maintaining joints health and bone density. The gelatinous substance produced from cooking bone broth works like collagen which is naturally found in our joints, ligament and tendons. When taken regularly as a part of an athlete’s diet, it can work well for reducing joint pain and help in recovery from regular wear and tear.
- Fruits and vegetables rich in Vitamin C: Vitamin C aids in collagen production. Collagen helps in maintaining the health of your bones, muscles, and skin. So, incorporating Vitamin C-rich food in your diet will help your body in rebuilding tissues post-injury. Vitamin C has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, which help in a speedy recovery by keeping excess inflammation at bay.
- Olive oil: Oils like peanut oil, vegetable oil, and sunflower oil may end up increasing inflammation. However, olive oil is great for salad dressings or cooking and is a great substitute. It contains healthy fat, is loaded with omega-3 which fights inflammation.