Will Losing Weight Help Knee Pain?
As you get older, you might find that you’re often achy by the end of the day – or you may even have a hard time getting out of bed in the morning. While there are lots of causes of joint pain, when it comes to your knees, carrying excess weight is often a culprit.
Scientists have established a clear link between knee pain and being overweight. Losing weight can often help to relieve knee pain, particularly if you don’t have an underlying condition causing the pain. For this reason, many doctors tell patients with knee pain to try losing weight before they will attempt any other treatment.
If you’re serious about losing weight, Ideal You is here to help. We take a holistic approach to weight loss that addresses all of the factors that can make it hard to shed excess pounds, from lack of sleep to poor hydration to eating the wrong foods. With our program, it’s easier than ever to lose a life-changing amount of weight quickly and sustainably!
How Carrying Extra Weight Can Cause Knee Pain
There are three primary ways that being overweight can cause knee pain: increased pressure on the knee joints, higher levels of inflammation in the body, and metabolic syndrome. Losing weight can help each of these issues – and significantly reduce or even eliminate knee pain.
First, extra weight adds a lot of pressure to your knees. For every 10 pounds of extra weight that you carry, the force on your knees is increased by 30 to 40 pounds. For each pound that you lose, it reduces the pressure on your knees by 4 lbs.
When you lose even a small amount of weight, that pressure drops. With less pressure on your knees, you’ll have less wear and tear on your joints. It also lowers your risk of developing osteoarthritis (OA).
Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease that causes pain and stiffness as the cartilage that cushions the joints wears down over time. It commonly affects the joints of the hands, knees, hips, and spine. Many people who have knee pain suffer from OA, which can cause pain, stiffness, tenderness, loss of flexibility, and other symptoms. Being overweight or obese is one of the risk factors for developing osteoarthritis. One study even showed that people who are considered obese are 4 to 5 times more likely to get arthritis in their knees.
Second, obesity may increase inflammation levels in the body. Inflammation is linked to a number of health problems – including OA. Studies show that when people lose weight, the inflammation markers tend to decrease, which often has the effect of reducing knee pain and lowering the likelihood of developing OA.
Third, people who are overweight or obese tend to have a collection of conditions known as metabolic syndrome. These conditions include type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. There is even some evidence that OA may be included as part of metabolic syndrome. If you lose weight, you reduce the risk of developing metabolic syndrome.
The science is clear: being overweight is linked to knee pain. The excess pressure and inflammation associated with extra weight often leads to OA, which can cause significant knee pain. Losing weight is a great way to help reduce some of that pain.
Will My Knee Pain Go Away If I Lose Weight?
According to one study, losing as little as 10 pounds can decrease the progression of knee osteoarthritis by as much as 50%. The experts agree that if you have weight-induced joint pain, losing weight can ease your symptoms by taking some of the pressure off of your joints. Losing as little as 10 to 20% of your body weight can improve pain, function, and quality of life.
In 2018, the National Institutes of Health’s National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS) and National Institute on Aging (NIA) released an analysis of a study of 240 overweight and obsese older adults. Researchers found that people who lost 20% or more of their body weight had significantly less inflammation and less pain. They could also walk farther in a 6 minute test than people who lost 5% of their body weight.
These studies show that losing weight is a great first step to take to reduce knee pain. For some people, dropping extra pounds is all that it takes to significantly reduce the pain in their knees. But keep in mind that losing weight won’t reverse arthritis or regrow cartilage. However, it can stop or reduce the progression of arthritis in your joints – and help you feel better.
How Can I Lose Weight If I Am in Pain?
When your knees hurt, you don’t want to do much. You may not even want to take a walk around the block, let alone engage in vigorous exercise. This might leave you wondering how exactly you can do all of the exercises that doctors recommend to help you lose weight.
Keep in mind that there are plenty of low impact exercises that you can still do, even if you are in pain. Swimming is a great example of a joint-safe exercise that will probably make your joints feel a lot better.
But you don’t have to exercise to lose weight. In fact, many people work out quite a bit and still don’t lose weight. The reason why is simple: the best way to lose weight is through diet.
Exercise is important to your health and well-being, but it isn’t the most important thing when it comes to weight loss. Even if you can’t exercise due to knee pain, you can still lose weight. Ideal You can help.
Our program trains your body to burn fat instead of sugar or carbohydrates. This allows you to drop weight quickly, without feeling like you’re deprived. With Ideal You, you will get:
- A structured food list
- A weight loss journal
- Support from a team of weight loss experts
- Weigh-ins and a meeting with a weight loss coach every 10 days
- All natural, food-based supplements
We won’t ever ask you to exercise for hours, drink nasty shakes, or buy expensive prepared meals. Our goal is to help you become the person that you were meant to be. We’ll support you throughout the process, and help you lose a life-changing amount of weight more quickly than you ever thought was possible.
Want to Lose Weight and Reduce Knee Pain? Give Us a Call!
Knee pain is a part of getting older for most people. If you’re struggling with your weight, you may find that your knees really hurt and make it hard for you to do any physical activity. Losing weight can help to ease that pain – and allow you to enjoy life again.
At Ideal You, we want to partner with you to help you achieve your goal weight. Our approach to weight loss is different, with a focus on sustainable weight loss. We won’t ask you to drastically cut calories, eat foods that you hate, or work out constantly. Instead, we’ll focus on giving you the support that you need to drop unwanted pounds.
If you’re ready to lose weight and alleviate your knee pain, give us a call at 888-488-7258 or schedule a free consultation at our Ann Arbor, Livonia, Lansing, Sterling Heights, or Grand Rapids locations.