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Want Less Knee Pain? --- Eat More
Vegetables

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May 16, 2018
By Susan Callahan, Associate Editor and Featured Columnist







If we Americans had to vote on a second National Anthem, my
guess is that it would "My Aching Knees I Sing of Thee!".  Knee
pain is one of the most common complaints heard in doctor's
offices. Some
30% of us experience joint pain including knee
pain
, according to the National Health Interview Survey. In the
journey to discovering something --- anything --- to relieve the
constant knee pain and other pains, we have built up the pain
killer industry into a virtual behemoth of to $ sales per year.

But what if the solution is something far simpler, cheaper, and
right in front of us everyday? Recent research suggest that the
answer to your knee pain can be found in the vegetable aisle of
your grocery store. Scientists from Korea have discovered that
eating more vegetables can reduce knee pain far more than
most pain relievers.

Eating More Fruits and Vegetables Reduces Knee Pain by an
Astounding 41%

In 2017,  a team of scientists from South Korea's CHA
University College of Medicine
set out to study the connection,
if any, between the amount of vegetables eaten and the
severity of knee pain. They studied a large group of 6
,588
people over the age of 50 who had completed the Korean
National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.

They first identified which of the participants were experiencing
knee pain (and which were not) as well as the severity of the
pain on a 10 point scale.

Then they identified the total intake of vegetables for these
participants, noting separately the intakes of fruits vegetables,
carotenoids and vitamin C .



Separating the participants in 5 groups, from those who ate the
most vegetables and fruits to those who ate the least, the
scientists discovered something unexpected. The 20% of
participants who ate the most fruits and vegetables had 41%
less occurrence of knee pain, compared to those who ate the
least fruits and vegetables.

Which vegetables were most effective in reducing knee pain?
This was not resolved by the study. However, the intake of
carotenoid-rich vegetables (orange-colored vegetables such as
carrots and pumpkins° as well as Vitamin C intake were not
connected at all to severity of knee pain. This finding would
suggest that green vegetables, among others, are very
important to reduces your knee pain.

What the Study left Out That May Be Important































Left out of the study was what effect, if any, body weight has
on knee pain. Those who eat more fruits and vegetables tend
to have lower body weight than those who do not. Thus, the
finding that people who eat more fruits and vegetables have
less knee pain may have more to do with having a lower body
weight than it has to do with the fruits and vegetables.

The study should have controlled fr this effect by comparing
knee pain among people with similar body weight.

Other studies have suggested that eating fruits helps to reduce
cartilage damage and knee osteoarthritis by reducing bone size
and the size of bone lesions. This was the finding, for example,
of a 2007 study from Monash University, Central and Eastern
Clinical School, in Australia.

Is It The Presence of Vegetables and Fruits or the Absence of
Meat That
Reduces Knee Pain?


According to te Arthritis Foundation, eating meat can
contribute to joint inflammation. Meat causes the production of
purines which can cause inflammation in people with gout.

From a personal perspective, I can say that my knee pain went
away completely once I became a vegetarian (actually I eat fish
also). Of course? I lost weight. But once I approached a
healthy body weight,  my knee pain continued to decrease.  I
now experience no knee pain at all.

Thus, in my case, I would say that the absence of meat has
helped to reduce my knee pain.





































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Eating more fruits and vegetables
can reduce knee
pain.