There are a series of effects that may occur when you are obese. Cardiovascular diseases and diabetes are the most frequently discussed ones. However, obesity is also linked closely to the occurrence of knee pain that can cause discomfort in your daily activities.
Obesity and knee pain
Although considered to be less harmful than diabetes and heart-related diseases, knee pain induced by obesity cannot be underestimated. According to various research, knee pain is the second most common effect of obesity undergone by Americans who are obese. More than 20 percent of these people suffering from knee pain are overweight and obese.
There is a close relation between obesity and the occurrence of throbbing pain on knee. This is a common sense you can easily observe in an overloaded truck, where the shock absorbers do not work as well as they would have with lighter load. Your knee—similar to these shock’s absorbers, may not work efficiently if you are overweight—your body carries more weight than it should have. As a result, the jolts cannot be soaked up properly, causing discomfort and pain around the knee. The bones that meet in your knees are covered in cartilage, and if you put excessive weight, you simultaneously put more force on that cartilage, causing it to wear quicker. This condition is referred as osteoarthritis.
Carrying extra body fat may also trigger the body to release the hormone leptin, which is believed to have a significant role in inducing osteoarthritis. In addition, body fat also releases substances promoting inflammation inside the body. These inflammation plays an important role in the cartilage covering your bones in the knee.
Will my knee pain go away if I lose weight?
If you often experience pain around the knee, it might be time to observe your weight for obesity. If you are sure about the issue, start losing some weight, because research has proven that overweight people suffering from osteoarthritis has reduced the knee pain by about a half by exercising and combining healthy diet. Losing weight give benefits to knee pain in some ways:
- It decreases weight-bearing pressure on the knees.
- Your extra fat gives a significant load for the knee. Roughly calculated, each pound of weight loss reduces knee-joint load by four pounds. This is a significant number that make it possible for proper weight loss to eliminate knee pain.
- Putting less pressure on the knees means you are saving the knee joints and cartilage from wear and tear and thus, reducing the risk of severe osteoarthritis. Less cartilage wear and tear also means less possible caused pain when your knees are moved whether when you are standing, walking, or running. It also gives more flexible movements compared to knees with worn and torn cartilage.
- It decreases inflammation of the body
- Weight gain may result in increased level of the hormone leptin, which is known to trigger inflammation in the body. If you suffer from lots of inflammation in the body, you will likely to end up experiencing joint pain, including the knee pain. Inflammation on the knee region cause unnecessary contact between the extra fat and the cartilage, causing discomfort and in some cases, severe knee pain that may occur almost anytime during the knee movements.
- Losing ten percent of weight will contribute to lowered inflammation risk in the body. Reducing this inflammation response will reduce joint pain and lower the risk of cartilage wear.
To reduce the risk of osteoarthritis, losing excessive weight is not required, since losing a small amount of weight has already contributed a significant role in cutting down the risk of osteoarthritis. In women, reducing every 11 pounds of weight will reduce the risk of developing osteoarthritis up to 50 percent. On the other hand, men who manage to drop their body weight into a normal weight category with BMI below 26 can reduce their risk of osteoarthritis by 21 percent. Hence, managing daily food intake and being involve in light cardio exercises will not only give beneficial effects to your heart health, but also reduce your knee’s load and thus, inhibit the occurrence of osteoarthritis.