Many people take vitamin and mineral supplements that have been touted to relieve arthritis, such as calcium or vitamins C, D, and E. But it's possible to go. When you have arthritis, you might be tempted to try anything that can help you feel better. However, it's possible to overdo and consume too many of these or other nutrients, and that could be harmful.
You might think that since vitamins are good for you, more is better. Taking too many vitamins is not only bad for your health, but also for your joints. Your body easily eliminates excess water-soluble vitamins, such as B and C, in your urine. However, fat-soluble vitamins and certain minerals are not easily eliminated and can build up to unhealthy levels if taken too much.
For example, too much iron causes joint pain, according to the Arthritis Foundation. Avoid taking more than the recommended daily amount of any vitamin or mineral. This amino sugar is a natural part of joint cartilage. Taking it as a supplement can help delay cartilage loss, as well as ease stiffness, swelling, and pain.
You can find it in capsules, tablets, in liquid or powder form. Your doctor may recommend that you take it in combination with another supplement, chondroitin. This substance is a natural part of the connective tissue of bones and cartilage. When you take it as a supplement, it can help increase collagen in your joints to help you better absorb shocks.
It can also help retain water in the cartilage. This can make the fabric work more smoothly. A little more chondroitin may also help protect you from cartilage loss. The supplement form comes from animal cartilage.
Scientists studying rheumatoid arthritis have found that people who have it often lack vitamin D. Low levels of this essential nutrient can cause chronic pain. When you take it as a supplement, it could help your arthritis treatment work better. This spice gives curry its yellow color.
It may also ease your pain a little. A chemical in turmeric called curcumin blocks certain proteins that can cause inflammation. Over time, it can help your joints hurt less and help you move better. This borago plant seed extract is high in gamma linolenic acid, a fatty acid that fights inflammation in the body.
Daily borage oil supplements can help treat rheumatoid arthritis symptoms and even reduce the dose you need from prescription treatments for joint pain and swelling. A vitamin D deficiency can affect both physical and mental health, but many people have low vitamin D levels without realizing it. When it's harder to spend time in the sun, such as during the winter months, it's much more difficult to get enough vitamin D from sunlight, so it may be necessary to get this vitamin from dietary sources instead. In addition, a study that followed 37 patients with early-stage rheumatoid arthritis for one year reported that those with low vitamin D levels at the start of the study did not respond as well to treatment and were less likely to achieve remission than patients with normal vitamin D levels.
Because vitamin D is so important for bone growth, some researchers have wondered if supplements can alleviate joint pain. Several studies show that low levels of vitamin D can cause increased joint and muscle pain, but research to date is inconclusive. However, more information is needed to determine if vitamin D supplements can help all people living with chronic pain. The B vitamins and vitamin C are soluble in water, so if you take them in excess, your body simply eliminates the excess.
Talk to your doctor before trying supplements of any kind, even if you've heard that they're good for joint pain. Vitamin D deficiency is common, but exposure to natural sunlight and eating foods rich in vitamin D can help prevent the condition. Vitamin D deficiency seems to be prevalent in patients with RA, and lower vitamin D levels may also contribute to the severity of joint pain. Taking vitamin A (if you're also taking acitretin), a medication for psoriasis, can cause too much vitamin A, which can cause nausea, dizziness, and poor muscle coordination.
As a result, many people believe that vitamin D plays a role in relieving joint pain, especially when inflammation is the cause. One study found that patients with chronic pain and vitamin D deficiency were the most likely to benefit from taking vitamin D supplements. .