Ruth asks This Morning doctor about milk helping arthritis
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Arthritis can be broken down into different forms, the most common being osteoarthritis. The condition is caused by a progressive breakdown in the cartilage – the rubbery tissue that protects the ends of the bone. Wearing and tearing of the joints can promote the growth of new bone around the joint, threatening the mobility of some sufferers. Current treatments for the condition are limited to painkillers, one healthy spread, however, has shown promise in reversing inflammation in the joints.
One study published in the International Journal of Rheumatic Disease found that sesame seeds could act as a pain reliever for osteoarthritis patients when taken with medication.
Researchers who examined a cohort of 50 patients with osteoarthritis, found sesame seeds were more effective at treating knee pain from osteoarthritis when taken over-the-counter pain relievers.
For their analysis, researchers split the sample into two groups, both of which received treatment at the outset of the study.
One was given glucosamine or Tylenol twice daily – a standard medication for the condition.
READ MORE: Arthritis: The fluid you can apply to ease symptoms and aid ’tissue regeneration’ – study
In addition to the medication, the other group received 40 grams of powdered sesame seeds daily – which equates to about two tablespoons of tahini – over a period of two months.
Results from the study revealed that patients in the sesame groups saw significant reductions in serum values, lipid profiles and oxidative stress.
No changes to these markers were observed in the control group, according to the researchers.
The researchers concluded: “Overall results of the present study demonstrated a positive effect of sesame seed in decreasing serum total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol and MDA in patients with knee osteoarthritis.
“[The results] indicated the fact that sesame seed might be of help to reduce oxidative stress in OA patients.”
MDA levels are frequently used as indicators of oxidative stress and antioxidant status in arthritis patients.
There is mounting evidence that oxidative stress in cartilage cells could be a key cause of osteoarthritis.
Some scientific circles have recently suggested therapy to neutralise oxide stress could help treat the condition.
In fact, it was recently discovered that one antioxidant found in food supplements, widely used to treat paracetamol poisoning, could treat osteoarthritis by targeting oxidative stress.
Researchers observed that N-acetyl cysteine, or NAC, reduced the level of joint damage in mice compared to healthy control mice.
The team suggested restoring NAC levels in osteoarthritic cartilage could form the basis for future treatments.
There are several studies supporting the antioxidant effects of sesame – but few have investigated the efficacy of these antioxidants in the treatment of arthritis.
To date, the only existing treatments are painkillers and drugs that reduce inflammation, but nothing has been found to halt or reverse the condition.
Osteoarthritis is one of the most common joint disorders in the world, and the number of people with the condition is expected to rise.
It is one of the most frequent causes of pain, loss of function and disability in adults.
Typically, osteoarthritis affects the knees, hips, neck, lower back, and hands.
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