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Ways to promote faster recovery from joint injury

| FEB 19, 2018

There are five key areas to focus on that contribute to faster and optimal recovery from joint injury.  It’s important to allow the body to go through its natural healing process such as the inflammatory process. However, during these acute stages, there are things you can do to optimise your recovery. In this article, personal trainer & fitness expert, Felicity Cole, shares her top tips to help promote faster recovery...

Sleep

Sleep is EVERYTHING!  Sleep is an integral part of healing and recovery.  Without quality sleep your body and brain never receive optimal nourishment in order to restore and recuperate. Sleep rejuvenates the immune system and aids the digestive system in processing and absorbing nutrients for recovery.

Movement

Movement promotes the transport of fluid to and from the injured area, ensuring good circulation which is key to the healing process.  The lymph system gets rid of waste products of injury repair and relies on muscle contractions to facilitate this process.  Movement also helps ligaments and tendons heal under a small amount of stress.  Placing the injured tissue under a small amount of load helps new tissue grow in an organised way increasing the strength along the direction of tension. 

Nutrition

There are many nutrients that are essential in the healing process and where possible should be supplied as part of a healthy balanced diet.  The right food and supplements can speed injury recovery.  Although all micronutrients are required and in a balance that is right for your body here are a few key ones you’d want to be sure to include: 

Vitamin A enhances and supports early inflammation during injury, reverses post injury immune suppression and assists in collagen formation.  

Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant and strengthens connective tissue.

Copper is a mineral that assists in red blood cell formation.

Zinc is required for over 300 enzymes in the body all necessary for tissue regeneration and repair.

Omega-3 fish oil

Omega-3 is important for tissue elasticity, muscle flexibility, joint motion and regulating the inflammatory response.  Add 3,000 - 9,000mg of fish oil a day, this will help balance your omega 6:3 ratio.

Sugar and alcohol

The big things to stay clear of when healing from an injury are sugar, all processed foods and alcohol.  These things are highly inflammatory to your body and will slow the process of injury recovery. Optimal hydration is also key, every cell in your body needs water. 

Mindset

You need to believe that you will get better.  Be patient with the healing process and find the positives.  Value the experience as a learning experience in that you will come back stronger in body and mind.

Stimulating parasympathetic nervous system

A calm parasympathetic state (rest and digest) is the optimal state for healing.  It’s important to find something that helps you achieve this.  It could be going for walks in nature, getting a gentle massage, meditation, reading a book or relaxing in a warm epsom salts bath. 

For more from Felicity head over to www.thelifeprojectadventures.co.uk

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