Living with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) offers a person certain unique challenges which others do not encounter. These include joint stiffness, fatigue – not relieved by rest, generalized body pain, neuropathy, sleep disturbances and an overall risk for developing other chronic diseases.
Therefore, it is important to observe accepted health rules more closely than the average person. There are a few guidelines that can help along this path.
- DECREASE STRESS, this can be through meditation or simply being mindful of your activities. ACUPUNCTURE can focus on certain pressure or sensitive points in the body to relax the nervous system. RELEASING NEGATIVE THOUGHTS has been shown to reduce stress and thereby pain and fatigue.
- EXERCISE, this needs to be done to tolerance – i.e. only do what your body can tolerate. Overdoing or overstretching can actually do more harm than good. Our bodies are made to move. Whether that be household duties or simple tasks within an office setting. It is important to remember that each joint in our body moves in many directions so move in that direction with purpose and skill on a regular basis. This may be 5 or 10 minutes of gentle activity at a time, a few times a day. The key point is to MOVE.
- EATING is something we all like, and need to do, on a regular basis – do it smart. Pick “real” food full of lean proteins, whole grains and healthy fruits and vegetables.
Just a thought for today. Remember our bodies are made to move…