5 Essential Minerals For Joint Pain and Inflammation
Joints are one of those body areas that we don’t think enough about until problems arise.
We think about building muscles and keeping our bones from the effects of osteoporosis – but there are well over 350 joints in the body that need our attention too.
One of the common ways our joints start acting up is through inflammation. Whether your joints are inflamed post-injury or due to age-related conditions like arthritis, the same is true: lowered inflammation = lowered pain, swelling, and discomfort.
So how are you going to decrease all that inflammation?
One option you have is through anti-inflammatory drugs or steroids. But the list of possible side effects is long. You could experience everything from heartburn and headaches to allergic reactions and kidney problems.
Luckily, there’s a door No. 2. A great all-natural anti-inflammatory blend will include powerful ingredients like celadrin, turmeric, and boswellia. There are vitamins – like the B complex and vitamin D – that are essential for keeping inflammation out of the body.
Minerals play an important anti-inflammatory role too.
Below you will find a list of 5 essential minerals for joint pain and inflammation. You don’t need a ton of each of these, but you need enough to benefit from their anti-inflammatory effects.
Why Inflammation Hurts Your Joints
When you have joint pain, you probably also have inflammation. Why does this happen?
Well, inflammation is technically supposed to be a good thing. It is a part of our bodies’ natural healing process. It is how your body tries to protect itself.
But it’s supposed to go away as soon as your injury is taken care of, and sometimes it doesn’t. That means chronic inflammation is like the saying “too much of a good thing is still too much.”
When you injure your joints (maybe while playing sports), that inflammation arrives right away to help you heal. That’s why you swell up and feel pain. But for many people, those issues of pain and swelling do not fully go away. Or maybe you have been diagnosed with arthritis, which is defined as too much inflammation in your joints.
Either way, you need to support your body’s immune system and antioxidant powers to combat that chronic inflammation so your pain, swelling, stiffness and discomfort can go away.
And that’s exactly what the five minerals below do.
How To Get These Minerals
The first way to get more minerals is through dietary consumption, otherwise known as the food you eat. As long as you eat a variety of produce, meats, grains, beans, and legumes, you should be getting minerals in your diet.
But sometimes diet alone is not enough – especially when you are dealing with a problem like inflammation and joint pain. Or maybe a diet lifestyle like veganism, leaves a bit of a hole in some vitamins and minerals. That’s where supplementation comes along.
As you will see, I have added the Recommended Daily Allowance and/or Tolerable Upper Intake Levels (This is the very most you can take before you start experiencing negative symptoms) for these minerals, so you can be wise about supplementation.
I’ve also included a short list of foods that are fabulous sources of each of the minerals, so you can ensure you are eating a well-rounded diet.
Note: Keep in mind that all of these recommended allowances and tolerable upper levels are for
adults who are not pregnant. If your child or teen is suffering from inflammation and joint point, talk to their pediatrician before giving them any sort of supplement. If you are pregnant, talk to your OBGYN.
5 Essential Minerals For Joint Pain and Inflammation
My guess is you’ve probably never heard of boron. It is not nearly as discussed as other minerals like calcium or magnesium. But you may be more familiar this mineral in the form of boric acid –which is often used for yeast infections.
Boron it is an extremely powerful mineral that has been shown time and time again to combat inflammation. It can:
- Improve arthritis
- Boost brain function
- Even treat some types of cancer
Researchers have tested boron in both rats and humans. One study of human males found that after only one week of taking a boron supplement, the inflammation markers in their bodies had decreased. Another study showed that taking boron orally or through injection greatly improved rats with arthritis because of its anti-inflammatory nature.
To top off boron’s direct anti-inflammatory effects, boron also prevents hypomagnesaemia, which is when your body does not have enough magnesium. Low magnesium can lead to more inflammation. So if a magnesium deficiency is causing your inflammation, boron can help you better absorb the food sources and supplement.
The Tolerable Upper Intake Level is 20 mg per day for adults.
Top Food Sources of Boron:
If you want to make sure you are getting enough boron, you can also be sure to add some of these foods into your weekly meals:
- Dried apricots
- Peanut butter
- Brazil nuts
Selenium is another trace mineral that’s important for a large variety of functions including heart health and cancer prevention. It is also anti-inflammatory in nature. Researchers have seen that selenium helps to regulate chronic inflammation in the body. It does this by supporting the “antioxidant defense system of the cell.”
One study looked particularly at selenium’s ability to reduce inflammation in women who deal with thyroiditis. Half of the participants took selenium for three months and the other half took a placebo. 9 people from the selenium group returned to perfectly healthy antibody levels (which help reduce inflammation). For the rest of the group the antibody levels still “decreased significantly.”
Another study looked at a wider range of inflammatory problems including joint issues – and found that supplementing with selenium brought “significant improvements.”
All of this should leave us unsurprised that selenium is often used for both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. In fact, those with rheumatoid arthritis specifically often are deficient in selenium.
The recommended dietary allowance for selenium is 55 mcg per day for teens and adults; the tolerable upper limit is 400 mcg per day (which includes food sources).
Top Food Sources of Selenium:
Here are the top foods to eat for more selenium. As you can see, this largely comes from meat products:
- Brazil nuts
Like many of the minerals on this list, manganese is often included in the treatment of osteoarthritis. It’s well known as a powerful anti-inflammatory, and it increases the levels of superoxide dismutase, which is a valuable part of the body’s antioxidant defense..
Plus, manganese plays an important role in building cartilage – which can help your joint areas as well.
No adult should be taking more than 11mg of manganese a day, and this includes dietary intake. So a supplement only needs to supply a mg or two for adequate dosing. This is a really important mineral to not go overboard on. In fact, too much manganese can actually promote inflammation. So watch your intake carefully.
Top Food Sources of Manganese:
Here are some of the best sources of dietary manganese:
- Seafood (mussels, clams)
- Macadamia nuts
- Pumpkin seeds
- Chia seeds
- Whole wheat bread
- Butter beans
- Winged beans
Zinc is a powerhouse for being a trace element. Your body does not need very much, yet the little amount it needs plays such an important part in your healthy. It keeps your immune system healthy, protects your eyes, and improves the skin.
When the body is deficient in zinc, you can experience immune system problems and inflammation. This is why zinc is important in the treatment of arthritis. Yet many people with arthritis have a zinc inefficiency or even deficiency.
The Recommended Dietary Allowance for men is 11 mg a day and for women it’s 8 mg per day. The Tolerable Upper Intake Levels for adults over 19 is 40 mg a day.
Top Food Sources of Zinc:
Here are some of the top foods that are high in zinc:
- Baked beans
Finally, we get to our last mineral: copper. A copper deficiency is really rare, so you don’t need to load up. But a small amount of copper, when combined with these other valuable minerals, can contribute to the lowering of inflammation.
Copper is also important for building and strengthening connective tissue that helps with the joint’s wear and tear, so this is another way getting the right amount of copper is essential for those with joint problems.
The Recommended Dietary Allowance for adults is 900 mcg of copper. The Tolerable Upper Intake Level is 10 mg a day.
Top Food Sources of Copper:
And here are some of the best foods you can eat if you want to consume more dietary copper:
- Sesame seeds
- Sunflower seeds
- Cashew nuts
Easing Inflammation Naturally
You can make sure that you are getting enough of these five minerals by taking an all-natural anti-inflammatory supplement. EU Natural’s Primal Joint Support and Anti-inflammatory combines them with those other necessary ingredients like turmeric and vitamins.
To keep the all-natural anti-inflammatory practices going, also be sure to find time for rest and relaxation – this can include a massage or gentle yoga class. And exercise as much as possible under the guidance of a trainer who knows how to be careful with joint pain.
Then let these 5 minerals play an important role in keeping your joints happy and healthy… and uninflamed.
Read Next: The Five Main Symptoms of Body Inflammation