Knee pain is one of the most common joint pains a person can experience. It can occur due to injury, overuse of the knee, or just age. Knee pain can also be caused due to diseases such as arthritis. Probably the best way to manage and treat knee pains is to reduce weight. But, what is the correlation between these two? How does weight affect knee pain? On the surface, the answer may seem obvious, but let’s take a deeper look.
The knee is made of bones, ligaments, cartilage, and fluids, along with a support system of muscles and tendons to facilitate the movement of the knee joint. The knee joint is capable of bending and straightening like a door hinge, making it the most complex joint in the human body.
The Act of Walking
If you can’t move your knee, you can’t walk. You may not be able to move your knee due to an injury or a striking pain that prevents you from fully utilizing your knee function. The act of walking creates a force of 4-6 times your body weight. In turn, this weight increases the stress on the knee joint.
Body Weight and Knee Pain
If the joint is weak, the body weight adds to the knee joint’s stress. The bones, muscles, cartilage and tendons experience an added pressure, which wears them down.
In cases, where your knee is already experiencing pain, the weight literally weighs down on your knee joint. This results in a large increase of the knee pain.
According to the Johns Hopkins Arthritis Center, even being 5 kgs overweight can increase the force on the knee by 27 kgs for each step.
To sum up: When you walk, your body weight is applying 10 times the force on your knee joints. Hence, if you are experiencing knee pain, it is essential that you reduce your body weight.
How to Reduce Weight
There is no single solution for you to lose weight, you must tackle the issue by including various treatments.
You are what you eat. Food plays a large role in weight control. Assess your diet. A good diet focuses on two aspects:
Dieting is not enough. Some form of exercise is also important. Exercise, in its most basic form, helps burn calories and fat. However, it also helps strengthen muscles, bone structure and the immunity system.
Exercises can vary from a simple walk to an intense jog to a workout session at the gym.
If the knee pain has affected your mobility, then it is recommended that you opt for physical therapy. Physical therapy is conducted by a professional and you will be given exercises that will help improve your health without stressing your knee joint.
When you are experiencing knee pain, you don’t have to bear with it. This is a chronic pain that can be dealt with the right action. In-Home Physical Therapy offers physical therapy services to help you manage the knee pain and reduce your weight.