The impact of weight on your knees
Many people with overweight or obesity experience knee pain.
The close relationship between weight and knee pain is straightforward.
Maintaining a healthy weight has many health benefits, including:
- reducing pressure on the knees
- reducing joint inflammation
- reducing the risk of various diseases
Reducing stress on knees
Excess weight is a risk factor for osteoarthritis because the increased stress wears down the cartilage at the ends of bones quickly.
Pain results when two bare joints rub against each other without the cushion of cartilage to protect them.
Studies of overweight and obese people with knee osteoarthritis indicate that those who lost weight with diet and exercise reduced their knee pain by about half.
The load on your knee joints equals four times your body weight.
So, for people with overweight, each pound they lose can reduce the load on their knee joint by 4 pounds (1.81 kg).
That means if you lose 10 pounds (4.54 kg), there’ll be 40 pounds (18.14 kg) less weight in each step for your knees to support.
Reducing joint inflammation
Obesity contributes to osteoarthritis because fat cells release chemicals that cause inflammation, which may lead to joint pain.
The inflamation accelerates the effects of rheumatoid arthritis(RA).
The more fat present in your body, the higher the concentration of these inflammatory factors that can increase joint deterioration.
According to one study, 3.7 percent of people with a healthy weight (BMI ) have Osteoarthritis(OA) of the knee, but it affects 19.5 percent of those with grade 2 obesity, or a BMI of 35–39.9.
Even if excess weight isn’t the source of your knee pain, being overweight or obese can aggravate any condition causing this type of discomfort.
However, losing weight can reduce this inflammatory response.
Reducing the risk of various diseases
Scientists have found links between:
Type 2 diebetes
Other health issues
These all form part of a collection of conditions known jointly as metabolic syndrome.
They all appear to involve high levels of inflammation, and they may all influence each other.
There’s growing evidence that OA may also be part of metabolic syndrome.
Following a diet that reduces the risk, which helps slow the progression of metabolic syndrome, may also help with OA.
Tips for losing weight
A sensible weight loss regime has to be part of the treatment plan for knee pain.
Getting to a healthy weight is certainly a good place to start when addressing knee pain.
Here are some tips for you to get started:
- Start a walking program, even if it’s just a few minutes a day (Braces helps relieve the pressure on your knees)
- Work on strength training to build muscle
- Look for ways to incorporate movement into daily life
- Reduce portion sizes at meals and snacks
- Keep vegetables, fruits, and healthy snacks on hand
- Take the stairs rather than the escalator or elevator.
- Pack your own lunch instead of eating out.