Did you know that the human body is composed of over 60% water? Water is essential for hydryation to our joints. It is composed of 2 parts Hydrogen and 1 part oxygen. Oxyginated blood provides healing and maintaince for all tissues, with water being an important component to do such. Just as improtant for hydration is our skeletal system. Our bones are made up of over 30% water. Water is essential for our entire body, all the way down to a cellular level.
Components of joints and surrounding tissues that are reliable on water.
-Synovial fluid is a material that helps lubricate our joints for movement. It contains water, hyaluronic acid (HA), proteins (albumin, immunoglobulins, AGP, A1AT etc.), salts, enzymes, lipids, and cells.
– Muscle and tendon tissue consists of about 75% water, which helps to form protein in muscles, stabilizing and protecting joints. Dehydration can reduce muscle tone by preventing muscles from contracting and or relaxing correctly.
– Joint cartilage. Your joints are made up of cartilage, which is about 60% water. Cartilage acts as a protective layer that reduces friction and wear between bones. With lack of hydration friction will increase.
Many of factors come in to play to why we may have joint pain or stiffness, from arthritic changes to auto immune disorders. Here are some common conditions and illnesses that can affect our joints and why hydration with water is imperative.
-Rheumatoid arthritis: Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune illness where the immune system starts to attack the tissues surrounding joints. Causes an inflammatory response with increased jont stiffness and restriction.
-Osteoarthritis: This is what we would refer to as ‘wear and tear’ arthritis. One of the most common causes of joint pain, osteoarthritis, unlike rheumatoid arthritis, usually appears in the larger joints of the hips and knees making it one of the more debilitating joint conditions.
-Gout: Gout is usually triggered by high levels of uric acid in the bloodstream. When the body is unable to excrete this acid, it can crystallize around the joints, weakening the connective tissue.
– Ankylosing spondylitis is an inflammatory disease that, over time, can cause some of the small bones in your spine (vertebrae) to fuse. This fusing makes the spine less flexible and can result in a hunched-forward posture.
Hopefully this information encourages you to stay hydrated so you can have healthy and happy joints!
Written by: Jared McEwan, LPTA