Osteoarthritis is a disease affecting the joints. Excessive weight puts pressure on the tissues (cartilage) that pad the joints, wearing them out over time. Cartilage is a protein substance that serves as a cushion between bones and joints. Osteoarthritis commonly affects the hands, feet, spine, knees and hips. There are two types of osteoarthritis, primary and secondary. Primary osteoarthritis is caused by ageing. As a person ages, the water content in the cartilage increases and the protein content decreases in cartilage degeneration. Secondary osteoarthritis is usually caused by obesity; however, can also be caused by surgery to the joints, gout, diabetes, or congenital abnormalities.

Symptoms of Osteoarthritis:

  • Pain in the joints after repetitive use
  • Swelling
  • Stiffness
  • Warmth / warm sensation in the joints

The primary treatment for osteoarthritis is a reduction of weight. Maintaining a healthy weight has shown to be the most effective treatment for this condition. Reducing the weight takes much of the pressure off the cartilage and has been proven to reduce pain and inflammation associated with osteoarthritis. Physical therapy is also used in conjunction with weight reduction in some cases.