Arthritis and Weight Gain Clinic Questions and Answers
At Metabolic Medical Centers, our metabolic specialists would be happy to answer any of your questions regarding arthritis and weight gain and the treatments that can help overcome both! For more information, call us or schedule an appointment online! We have convenient locations to serve you in Mount Pleasant SC, West Ashley SC, Murrells Inlet SC, Columbia SC, and Bluffton SC.
Arthritis and weight gain can be an unpleasant combination. Not only can arthritis make it difficult to exercise and lose weight but added weight can increase the uncomfortable symptoms associated with arthritis. In such situations, it can be helpful to see a medical doctor who specializes in weight loss and arthritis treatment. Such doctors can provide weight loss programs that address the unique challenges arthritis poses for weight loss routines.
Does Obesity Cause Arthritis?
While obesity does not directly cause arthritis, it can significantly increase one’s risk of developing arthritis in their joints. The reason that obesity raises a person’s risk of developing arthritis in their joints is because the added weight increases the pressure on the cartilage and fluids that protect your bones and joints from wear and tear. For this reason, arthritis of the knees, hips, feet, and ankles is prevalent among individuals who suffer from obesity.
How Does Your Weight Affect Inflammation of your joints?
To understand how extra weight affects joint inflammation, it is first necessary to understand how arthritis works. First of all, there are two main types of arthritis, inflammatory arthritis, the most common of which is rheumatoid arthritis (RA), and degenerative arthritis, also known as osteoarthritis (OA). Inflammatory arthritis occurs due to problems within the immune system, while degenerative arthritis occurs due to general wear and tear.
With rheumatoid arthritis, the immune system mistakenly interprets synovial fluid in the joints as a threat and attacks it. Whenever the immune system attacks a perceived harmful invader, it creates inflammation to eliminate the infection and prevent the disease from harming the body. When this occurs with RA, it generates uncontrolled inflammation inside the joints, leading to joint erosion.
With osteoarthritis, the cartilage that protects bones and joints from rubbing against each other wears away, which causes pain, inflammation, and joint stiffness. OA often occurs with age, repetitive strain injuries, or traumatic injuries to a ligament, tendon, or other soft tissue.
Excess weight can complicate or worsen joint inflammation with both RA and OA in different ways. With OA, extra weight increases pressure and stress on joints that support the body’s weight, such as the knees or hips. In response, the joints produce more inflammation in attempts to heal the damaged tissue. The way that excess weight affects RA is more unclear. However, experts believe that the inflammatory compounds within fatty tissue play a significant role in increasing the uncontrolled inflammation of RA.
Can arthritis make it hard to lose weight?
Practically speaking, arthritis can make it more challenging to exercise regularly due to increased joint pain, discomfort, and stiffness. Since exercise is an integral part of weight loss and weight management, arthritis can make it difficult to lose weight in that way. With that being said, arthritis should not directly cause weight gain. Since regular exercise can be difficult with arthritis, you may find aquatic therapy and exercise beneficial, as warm water is known to soothe and relieve pain and stiffness from arthritis. Low-impact exercises may also be helpful.
Does arthritis get better with weight loss?
Yes! Arthritis can be significantly improved with safe and effective weight loss routines. With OA, weight loss will decrease the pressure placed upon the damaged joints. In contrast, weight loss can help RA by reducing the number of inflammatory compounds interacting with the synovial fluid around your affected joints.
Metabolic Medical Centers is proud to provide safe and effective medical weight loss programs for individuals dealing with arthritis and weight gain! For more information about our weight loss programs or an appointment with us, please do not hesitate to give us a call or schedule an appointment on our website. We Serve Patients from Mount Pleasant SC, West Ashley SC, Murrells Inlet SC, Columbia SC, Bluffton SC, Sullivans Island SC, Isle of Palms SC, Daniel Island SC, Charleston SC, James Island SC, North Charleston SC, Pawleys Island SC, Myrtle Beach SC, Hilton Head SC, and Hardeeville SC.