Garlic Could Help Reduce Osteoarthritis Of The Hip

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December 21, 2010

Garlic could help reduce osteoarthritis of the hip

Garlic could help reduce osteoarthritis of the hip

An article published on December 8, 2010 in the journal BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders reports the discovery of Frances M. K. Williams, PhD of King's College Department of Twin Research and her associates at the University of East Anglia of a protective effect of allium vegetables, which include garlic, leeks and onions, against osteoarthritis of the hip.

The study included 1,000 healthy female twins between the ages of 46 to 77, many of whom had no symptoms of arthritis. Dietary questionnaire responses provided information on the participants' intake of 131 foods. Radiographic evaluation assessed the presence of early osteoarthritis in the hip, knee and spine.

Among women whose fruit and vegetable intake was high, there was a lower adjusted risk of hip osteoarthritis compared to those whose intake was low, with the greatest protective benefit observed for non-citrus fruit and allium vegetables. Further research in cultured human cartilage cells determined that diallyl disulphide, a compound that occurs in garlic, limited the expression of cartilage-damaging enzymes known as matrix-degrading proteases. "While we don't yet know if eating garlic will lead to high levels of this component in the joint, these findings may point the way towards future treatments and prevention of hip osteoarthritis," Dr Williams remarked.

"It has been known for a long time that there is a link between body weight and osteoarthritis," she observed. "Many researchers have tried to find dietary components influencing the condition, but this is the first large scale study of diet in twins. If our results are confirmed by follow-up studies, this will point the way towards dietary intervention or targeted drug therapy for people with osteoarthritis."

"Osteoarthritis is a major health issue and this exciting study shows the potential for diet to influence the course of the disease," noted coauthor Professor Ian Clark of the University of East Anglia. "With further work to confirm and extend these early findings, this may open up the possibility of using diet or dietary supplements in the future treatment osteoarthritis."

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Unlike rheumatoid arthritis, which is characterized by systemic inflammation, osteoarthritis is a localized disease that occurs only in the affected joints. With osteoarthritis, the thin layer of cartilage between the joints gradually erodes and wears away. As the protective layer of cartilage vanishes, the bone beneath becomes pitted and uneven, and the structural integrity of the joint is destroyed. Movement can become extremely painful and, in the worst cases, people who have severe osteoarthritis can no longer take care of themselves on a day-to-day basis.

To diagnose osteoarthritis, physicians typically rely on symptoms. It is important that a physician differentiate osteoarthritis from other joint diseases. X-rays may be taken to make sure the diagnosis is correct. Osteoarthritis may be characterized by bone enlargement and narrowing of the joint space.

It is important that people with osteoarthritis launch their nutritional program as early in the disease process as possible. The goal is to provide nutrients to help rebuild damaged bone and cartilage. The following nutrients are recommended:

  • EPA and DHA—1400 milligrams (mg)/day of EPA and 1000 mg/day of DHA
  • Ginger—60 mg/day
  • Curcumin—900 mg/day, with 5 mg of piperine
  • Bioflavonoids—300 mg/day, including nobiletin
  • Nettle leaf extract—375 to 500 mg/day
  • SAMe—400 to 1200 mg/day
  • Glucosamine—1500 mg/day
  • Chondroitin—1000 mg/day
  • MSM—1000 to 3000 mg/day
  • Green tea extract—725 mg/day of green tea powder, yielding at least 246 mg of EGCG
  • Vitamin C—1 to 3 grams (g)/day
  • Vitamin E—400 International Units (IU)/day, with 200 mg of gamma-tocopherol
  • NAC—600 mg/day

Interactive Life Extension Magazine® January 2011 issue now online!

Life Extension Magazine November, 2010

Carnosine extends life span
In a major advance, scientists have boosted longevity up to 36% in an experimental study using this vital nutrient! Here we reveal the multiple mechanisms carnosine targets to combat age-related disease.

Gamma-tocopherol continues to be overlooked
Find out why gamma tocopherol is required for optimal health.

Are you unwittingly starving your brain?
If you’re rightfully avoiding saturated fats and cholesterol, you risk a deficiency of two key brain-healthy nutrients clinically proven to prevent dementia and cognitive decline.

The beneficial omega-6
Discover the little-known benefits of gamma-linolenic acid or GLA.

FDA blocks cutting-edge arthritis treatment
Dr. Christopher Centeno of Regenerative Sciences has developed a safe, nonsurgical therapy shown to eliminate arthritic pain up to 75% using his patients’ own stem cells.

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