Could The Pain In Your Knee Or Lower Back Related To The Food You Eat…?
… Or does that just sound like a bunch of BS?
As you may or may not know, my wife and I are big into
eating healthy – organic this, pasture-raised that, and
grass-fed the other.
I’ve always been interested in food as a form of medicine
since the day I saw the quote from Thomas Edison in
my chiropractor’s office,
“The doctor of the future will give no medicine but will
interest his patients in the care of the human frame, in diet
and in the cause and prevention of disease.”
… Even though I’m [obviously] no doctor. (Nor have I ever
played one on TV.)
However, some seemingly outrageous claims are being
made these days about being able to manage pain
through the foods you eat or don’t eat.
I used to think some of this was just BS – you know,
the proverbial “cow cookie” – until I had a client that
I trained for almost 10 years who was allergic to “nightshades” -
tomatoes, eggplant, etc.
They irritated her rheumatoid arthritis. She’d literally come
in to train after she’d eaten those foods (she loved tomatoes
and couldn’t help herself sometimes) and her joints would
be red and more swollen than usual, with a significant and
obviously reduced range of motion.
Around the same time I met her, I finally took milk and
milk products out of my diet in order to alleviate the chronic
pain I had in both my knees.
And it helped to a degree.
Then I’d “test” it and put the dairy back in and the knees
would hurt even more.
Turns out the pasteurization process destroys the
healthy bacteria and enzymes in milk that are necessary
to digest it properly. As a result, your body has a hard
time digesting the lactose (milk sugar), causing gas,
bloating, indigestion, and in some cases, runny stool.
Apparently, that’s because the lactose irritates your stomach
lining causing a low grade form of inflammation.
Not very scientific, but there are 2 anecdotal pieces of
evidence for you.
Here’s what else:
Digestion problems can also inhibit the proper functioning
of your core musculature, causing movement dysfunctions
and compensations, which can later lead to injury.
(Ask me how I know.)
And worse yet, chronic inflammation produced by foods
that you’re mildly or severely allergic to can not only
cause other muscle imbalances and joint pain, it can
also inadvertently make you fat.
It’s a whole downward spiral.
Check this out –
Here are 4 more foods that can increase inflammation
and irritate the snot out of your joints. (Yep, that’s the
scientific/medical term – “irritate the snot out of your joints.”)
1) Sugar. This one is obvious. Nothing damages the
digestive tract like refined sugar.
The medical community is starting to agree on the fact
that chronic inflammation often starts in your gut, the
biggest part of your immune system.
2) Alcohol. FortunateIy for me, I quit drinking alcohol 3
years ago after a 20-year on-again/off-again love affair
with it, so this doesn’t really apply to me – but it most likely
does to you. Turns out beer and other alcoholic “bevvies”
damage your gut flora and your liver when consumed in
excess. “Not good, Mav… Not good…”
3) Grains. Bread. Almost nothing better to go with your
glass of red wine and cheese. Unfortunately, refined or not,
grains are inflammatory. That’s even worse if you’re gluten-
sensitive, like 10-15 % (depending on the sources) of the
The phytic acid and lecithins in grains are a problem for most
people, even without allergies or intolerance.
4) Refined vegetable oil. Canola, soy, safflower, corn, sunflower,
you name it.
I eliminated these (or rather my wife did) a long time ago
from our diet. Now we just use BUTTER (had to capitalize
it for effect cause it’s just that good), pure Olive Oil, and
virgin Coconut Oil.
Turns out even though these oils are advertised as healthy
and trans-fat free, the heavy refining which they go through
destroy the healthy fats and turn them into highly
Since nature abhors a vacuum, you have to replace this
junk with something else or you’ll just revert right back to
using them (Ha! Makes us sound like some sort of addict…)
what do you do?
My good friend Mike Westerdal, and his Canadian colleague,
Rick Kaselj, put together a sweet little resource for you
called “101 Superfoods That Stop Your Joint Pain &
I carefully studied it and found that some of these things
we’re already using – like the Six C’s:
Cocoa, coffee, cinnamon, curry, and coconut oil.
Who knew? Chocolate and coffee can actually decrease
chronic inflammation and therefore can decrease
(Chocolate in SMALL amounts, ladies…)
Anyway, this nifty little resource shows you another 95
healthy and delicious foods that can reduce chronic
inflammation and therefore reduce joint pain.
The hardest part of making changes from old habits to
creating new healthy habits, is, well, painstakingly painful.
(Is that even possible??)
Anyway, Mike and Rick have provided a little 7-day starter
plan to help you implement using (i.e. “eating”) these 101
Superfoods. They even included a grocery list to help
you shop. Pretty cool if you ask me.
Anyway, if you’ve been popping Advil or Tylenol like Pez,
and you want to try an “all natural” way to help alleviate
aches and pains, check out their “101 Superfoods That
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