If pain lets you know that you’re still alive, you probably feel alive first thing in the morning. It’s something that can really start your day off on the wrong foot. Joints make a habit of hurting, regardless of how young or old you are. When they play up enough, you probably stop referring to them as your right and left but your good and bad knee. Should you accept this pain as a cost of doing that thing called life? No! Pain that might prevent you from exercising regularly should never be considered normal. That doesn’t mean you need to run to the massage therapist or buy a percussion therapy gun to help get yourself mobile. Instead, you should assess if it’s your diet that’s giving you that bum knee.


Food at work

Food can have a two-fold impact for your poor knees. First, the heavier you get, the more weight your joints must shoulder, except that it’s not the shoulders that carry the burden. It’s usually your knees, ankles, and lower back. Ouch! Second, it’s the quality of food that can really set your joints, and skin, on fire, says a paper in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology. They found switching from a high sugar Western diet to a more balance diet was able to reduce joint and skin inflammation.

What does a western diet look like? It’s high in fat and sugar. The effects get written all over your face when you eat it because those rosy cheeks aren’t a sign of optimum health. By changing your diet, you positively impact the microbial balance in the intestines, and this makes your joints feel less pain while reducing skin inflammation. Not only will you look your best, but you’ll feel your best too.


The damage is reversible

Even if you’re suffering now, you can still make progress. The researchers found making the changes can reverse the inflammation. That’s good news for anyone who may have eaten poorly for a spell. It’s easy enough to slip into bad dietary habits. Fortunately, you can very easily seek to cut down on those two elements. It’s not that you want to restrict all fats. Just some fats. The ones you want to keep are unsaturated fats like the ones you find in nuts, salmon, and olive oil. The fats you want to get rid of include mostly transfat from heavily fried foods or those that come coupled with processed ready-to-eat snacks.


Go low sugar

Sugar is an easy one to cut from your food plan. Whether you want to gain weight or lose fat, eating low sugar is always smart. It’s packaged in desserts, soft drinks, and many sauces. What you may not know is that it also hides in many cereals, canned foods and even in snacks that are labelled healthy but really aren’t, like granola bars. Your pre and post workout protein should never exceed more than 2g of sugar. Sugar creeps into places where it’s not welcome, so make sure you always read the label and scrutinize the stuff that’s going into your body. If you can cut down on the sugar, your joints will thank you and your skin will reward you by looking far healthier.