Happy New Year! I hope you're off to a great start this year. One of the biggest New Year's resolutions is to lose weight. Right behind that is to start exercising. Now there's a great reason to do both.
As you may know, I take great enjoyment in rehabilitating damaged knees. Most of the patients that come in to see me with knee pain have already been told that they needed a total knee replacement surgery. Many of them are "bone-on-bone." What do I do?
I inject oxygen in the form of ozone along with a special combination of nutrients into the joint. The result is a stimulation of the stem cells and blast cells that repair cartilage. Roughly 80% of the patients who get this simple, safe treatment become pain free, fully functional, and, of course, never need surgery. I call the treatment Prolozone®. You can learn more about it by searching the past issues of Real Cures and also by going to my clinic website: www.antiagingmedicine.com. But here's the problem.
Why don't I see 100% results? How come I can't help 20% of the people who come to see me? One reason for sure is that I usually get the worst cases. So a certain percentage of the patients I see are beyond the point of return. Not much I can do about that except wish they had come in sooner. But there's another reason that is pointed out in a recent study. And this reason is very fixable.
Researchers at the Department of Health and Exercise Science at Wake Forest University wanted to find out how much a person's weight has to do with their knee health. Specifically, they wanted to know whether or not a 10% reduction in their body weight would improve knee pain and bio-mechanics.
They studied 454 overweight men and women over the age of 55. All of them had knee pain and X-ray proof of osteoarthritis. Before the study began, they measured everyone's knee joint compressive force and plasma IL-6 (interleukin-6) levels. High knee joint compressive forces put more of a load on the knees and worsen the arthritic changes. IL-6 is an inflammatory cytokine that is involved with the inflammation that causes arthritic pain. Fat cells make a lot of IL-6. So the more fat you have on your body, the more IL-6 you will have. They also measured pain levels, mobility levels, and quality of life scores.
Then they put everyone on one of three different programs. Some went on a weight-loss diet and an exercise program. Some on just the weight-loss diet. And some on just the exercise program. They conducted the experiment for 18 months.
Of the group that started, 399 finished the program. The average weight loss for the diet plus exercise group was 23 pounds. For the diet alone group, it was almost the same, 19 pounds. For the exercise only group it was much less, only 4 pounds. So it's pretty easy to see that losing weight without going on a diet is not likely to be very effective. Here's what happened to their knees.
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The knee joint compressive forces dropped a very significant 7% in both of the diet groups compared to the exercise only group. Additionally, the IL-6 levels were 13% lower in both diet groups compared to the exercise-only group. The conclusion: Losing weight is much more effective for relieving arthritis than just exercising without the weight loss.
When it came to pain, the diet-plus-exercise group had 32% less pain than either the exercise or the diet-only groups. The diet-plus-exercise group also had better function and quality-of-life scores.
I mentioned above that I'm not successful in regenerating the cartilage in arthritic knees in about 20% of patients. The truth is that most of these patients are overweight and none of them have an active exercise program for their knees. This study points out how effective the combination of weight loss and exercise is. And of the two, it's very clear that weight loss is the most important.
So if you are one of the many out there who are starting to develop bad knees, the writing is on the wall. If you are overweight do something about that. Drop at least 10% of your weight before you get any worse. And if you don't have an active knee exercise program, work with a certified trainer to get one going. Taking these simple steps could make this the year you say goodbye to that extra weight - and that knee pain!
Finding your Real Cures,