If you’re suffering from arthritis, there’s one significant change that could revolutionize your life. Let me tell you about a patient of mine. She was unable to walk, unable to work, unable to enjoy her time with family and friends. All because of severe pain and functional limitations from knee arthritis. But one day, she made a change. And this change transformed her life. I want to share her story with you. Her story is not unique and her success is reproducible. I’m going to reveal her secrets.
I have a patient with severe knee osteoarthritis. And she tried everything. Physical therapy and chiropractic care. Cortisone shots. Hyaluronic acid injections. She tried medications and creams and massages. Everything helped a little, some more than others, but she was still in excruciating pain.
Discouraged, she was contemplating a knee replacement surgery. But the timing just wasn’t right. Who was going to help her and her family? She couldn’t take time off work either. And the rehab scared her. She came to me for a second opinion and admitted her lifestyle was a mess.
But after our visit, she had a HUGE revelation that changed her life. Her knee pain slowly resolved. She had better function, more mobility. She exercised more and got her independence and her life back.
So what was the secret? My patient started taking her diet and her weight SERIOUSLY.
She cut out processed meats and decided to eat mostly fish. No more fried foods and no more processed foods. Lots of vegetables. She still snacked, but opted for nuts and seeds. She also cut out a lot of added processed sugars and opted for natural foods like fruit. She cut out all sodas and sweetened beverages and only drank water.
My patient lost 25 pounds in the first three months. Each pound she lost meant 4 TIMES less weight going through her knees. This translates to 100 pounds LESS FORCE going through her knees with every step.
She was able to walk more, 10 minutes at first, but eventually built that up to 35 minutes daily. Her goal was to be able to get to 1 hour walks with her husband. She was actually surprised that the walks gave her MORE energy. She felt empowered for the first time in years.
She started doing weight training to increase her quadriceps and gluteal muscle strength. She had to do body weight exercises at first, but then was able to start adding light dumbbells. One day, she realized she was able to go up and down stairs without any pain. Previously, this was unimaginable. Her family was amazed at her transformation.
Her friend asked her “Weren’t you thinking about getting a knee replacement?” Yes, she said. But not any more. She felt good now. And despite having severe bone on bone osteoarthritis, she was hoping to delay surgery for a long time.
I’m sharing this story because if you are suffering from knee arthritis, you can make these changes too. Believe in yourself like my patient believed in herself. She was determined to make a change, and she did.
Start by examining your diet. You can't out exercise a bad diet. Start slow and cut out all the unnecessary carbohydrates, especially the added sugars. Then cut out the fried foods. Natural foods only. Things that grow in the ground or from trees. Eliminate or minimize processed foods.
Make time for exercise and then slowly increase it. If this means a 5 minute walk, then start there. Add muscle strengthening exercises. Cardio is great, but it is not a substitute for muscle strengthening. Focus on body weight exercises and especially target the quadriceps and the glutes.
If you have pain, that’s okay. Expect some pain when you first start out. A pain level of 3 or 4 out of 10 is acceptable. Anything higher and you may want to try an occasional ibuprofen or acetaminophen to help reduce the pain so that you can exercise more. Some people find supplements like boswellia serrata or turmeric curcumin more effective. You can also try supportive knee braces like a neoprene knee sleeve or a hinged knee brace during exercise. Those with severe pain may want to consider an injection of medications into the knee to help alleviate pain so that they can start exercising.
The reason these changes work is because osteoarthritis is as much a metabolic disease as it is a wear and tear disease. Things like your weight, your diet, your blood sugar, cholesterol, triglycerides, all of these things directly affect our joints and our perception of pain. Correct these critical factors and you’ll realize that managing arthritis isn’t just about addressing joint damage, but also about improving overall metabolic health.
This holistic approach can lead to significant reductions in pain and inflammation, enhanced joint function, and ultimately a better quality of life. It has been three years since my initial consultation with my patient and she is thriving. You too can see similar results if you start making changes. This next video will show you how to make those changes and which foods are crucial for supporting joint health and metabolic balance.