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Arthritis is a medical condition affecting a joint or joints, causing pain, swel ling and stiffness.

The two most common forms are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Osteoarthritis (also called degenerative joint disease) usually affec ts people after middle age and is characterized by gradual loss of cartilage of the joints. Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic condition that can result in weakn ess, loss of mobility, and eventual destruction and deformity of the joints. It occurs when the body's immune system destroys the synovial membrane lining the j oint. Both conditions are intensified if you are overweight. Arthritis exercises - Download free exercise PDF. Vitamins helpful for arthritis relief Vitamin A damps down inflammation. Vitamin B3 helps to reduce pain and increase mobility. Pantothenic acid reduces inflammation. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that mops up the free radicals that cause rh eumatoid arthritis. Vitamin E is an antioxidant and also helps mobility in osteoarthritis. Minerals helpful for arthritis relief Calcium is crucial for bone health. Copper relieves symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis. Selenium is an antioxidant that enables the body to produce glutathione, a subst ance that fights free radicals and prevents oxidation, and hence damage to joint linings. Boron aids the retention of calcium in the bones. Other nutrients for arthritis relief Omega-3 fish oils have pain-relief properties. Omega-6 oils have anti-inflammatory properties. Foods helpful for arthritis relief Sardines (with bones for extra calcium), chicken, bananas, herrings and kippers, salmon and trout, cheddar cheese, sunflower seeds, dark green vegetables (spina ch and broccoli) Foods to avoid Meat fats have the opposite effect to fish oils: they stimulate the production o f inflammatory agents. Foods that may cause allergies, such as dairy foods, refined sugar, citrus fruit s and wheat.