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Q: Due to my job I have always been active, but recently took a desk (for about 6 months). I also just turned 30 :( So, I gained about 20 pounds. I am now looking to move onward to another position that requires me to be intensely active. I have already experienced some joint pain while exercising associated with my recent weight gain. What specific foods can I eat that will help make my ligaments/joints ect. stronger. (Pain is mostly in my knees/elbows/shoulders)

A: Unfortunately, sedentary or desk jobs tend to promote less activity and can lead to weight gain over time. There are a few things that you can do to work on relieving your joint pain. The first is to work on weight loss by participating in low-impact exercises, such as biking or swimming. Strengthening muscles with weight training will also support joint health. And currently, you can also remain active during your day as less movement can stiffen joints. Nutrition tips that you may find useful are to increase your intake of omega-3 fats, as these may decrease inflammation. Suggestions include consuming more fatty fish, such as salmon, tuna and halibut. If you are not a fan of fish, consider adding flaxseed to items such as oatmeal or yogurt, and snacking on nuts such as walnuts or almonds. Dietary supplements are another option. Glucosamine is a supplement to consider, and this has been shown to be most beneficial for individuals with moderate to severe joint pain. Consider speaking to your doctor or pharmacist prior to purchasing this dietary supplement to find the right product for you.

If you have any questions or problems always see your healthcare provider.