Knee degeneration is one of the more frequent complaints I see as patients age. Overuse and extra weight cause enormous wear and tear on this joint. Fortunately, there are several effective ways to deal with the pain - and even eliminate it in some cases.

Two of the best ways I've seen to deal with any joint pain is prolotherapy and red laser light.

Prolotherapy is a simple technique where your doctor injects saltwater or sugar water into your joint. The mixture irritates the ligaments and tendons, which causes your body to heal itself.

And the red laser light is a simple handheld device that has amazing healing abilities for many types of pain, including joint pain. You can find out more about both of these treatments - and where to get them - on my

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The one place you don't want to go for pain relief is pain medications. Over 7,000 people die from NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) each year. And hundreds of thousands more suffer through tremendous side effects. But you can get the same results you would get from NSAIDs from a natural source.

New research shows that 2,400 mg of the omega-3 fats EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosapentaenoic acid) can greatly reduce your pain. In the study, which had patients taking the fish oils with NSAIDs, 59% of the participants quit taking the drugs.

But that's not all, 78% of the participants found relief on only 1,200 mg per day. And none of them experienced any side effects. So if you want to beat arthritis pain without side effects take at least 1,200 mg of fish oil each day.

Of course, the best way to beat knee pain is to protect your knees from getting damaged in the first place. And there's an easy way to save your knees - and it costs next to nothing.

A study recently followed 293 healthy adults. Their average age was 58. They had no arthritis at the start of the study. The researchers evaluated the participants every 10 years. They found an inverse relationship between fruit intake and cartilage damage. In other words, the more fruit in your diet, the better your knees will hold up.

The researchers discovered that lutein and zeaxanthin are the specific nutrients that offer protection. Fruit is rich in these powerful bioflavonoids. And, while eating fruit isn't enough to reverse cartilage damage, it can help.

The goal is to protect your knees as you age. No drug prevents arthritis. But your diet and lifestyle definitely do. Eat plenty of fruit and take plenty of fish oil. The combination will do wonders for your knees.

Ref: "Effect of antioxidants on knee cartilage and bone in healthy, middle-aged subjects: a cross-sectional study," Wang Y, Hodge AM, et al, Arthritis Res Ther, 2007; 9(4): R66.

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