Reducing Inflammation Restores Joint Cartilage
Inflammation commonly accompanies or contributes to the destruction of joint cartilage. One of the biggest causes of inflammation is an imbalance of omega-6 fatty acids in relation to omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-6s are inflammatory by nature, while omega-3s are anti-inflammatory. We need both, but in the right balance.
An overabundance of omega-6 fatty acids can lead to inflammation in the joints and throughout the body. In this country, vegetable oils are our most abundant source of omega-6s. Overconsumption causes the omega-6 to omega-3 ratio in most Americans to be around 20:1. Ideally, it should be closer to 2:1.
You can fix this imbalance by limiting your consumption of vegetable oils and processed foods that contain them, while at the same time including omega-3-rich foods like fish , walnuts, flaxseed, olive oil, and chia seed to your diet.
Sardines probably give you the most bang for the buck. They are inexpensive, safe from heavy metals like mercury, and are loaded with RNA. A can or two a week can work wonders for inflamed joint cartilage.
Other good anti-inflammatory foods include:
- Green tea
- Grapes, particularly red and darker skinned varieties
Physical Steps To Restore Joint Cartilage
First and foremost, its important to limit high-impact damage to joint cartilage.
Activities like jogging, jumping from high objects, and impact sports may be fine for younger people, since joint cartilage, ligaments, tendons, and other structures are more flexible and forgiving. But as we get older, the pounding places undue stress and damage on joint cartilage. Thats why you would be hard-pressed these days to find an older professional football player who doesnt have severe joint problems and/or a joint replacement.
Additionally, obesity places constant and unnecessary stress on the joints, which is increased even more when walking or doing upright activities. Losing even a few pounds of excess weight can make a profound difference in both joint pain and long-term joint health.
Likewise, its important to move every joint in the body through its complete range of motion every day. Since cartilage doesnt have a blood supply like other living tissues, it must receive its nutrients and remove any waste material by way of the synovial fluid within the joint capsule. Range-of-motion exercises help ensure this synovial exchange of fluid occurs regularly over the entire joint surface.
Regular exercise is essential for joint health too. Exercises that dont unduly compress joint cartilage can help preserve joint mobility and stability, and overall circulation. Exercise also helps decrease stress hormones and inflammation throughout the body.
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Collagen And Protein Connection
Collagen is the main protein in cartilage, ligaments and bone. Your body makes collagen by combining amino acids1. Although your body can produce some amino acids on its own, others need to be derived from food. Focus on eating foods that are complete proteins, meaning that they contain all nine essential amino acids that the body can’t make. These foods include:
- red meat
- snow peas 4
Oats Osteochondral Autologous Transplant System
This technique can be used for larger lesions of more than 2cm squared. This technique utilises small cylindrical autologous cartilage grafts – the term autologous meaning that the cartilage is taken from the patient themselves and not a donor. What this means is that small plugs of cartilage and underlying bone are taken from the part of the joint that is not involved in weight-bearing and is, therefore, not an essential part of the joint. These plugs are then taken from the donor site and plugged into the area where there is missing cartilage.
The advantages of OATS are that the transplant of hyaline cartilage is used and that the technique can be performed in a single surgery.
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Best Foods For Natural Knee Cartilage Regeneration
Posted: Jul 23, 2021 · Opinion by Shai Cohen · This blog generates income via ads
Hear that creaking sound while stretching your legs? Yes, the warning sign that your knee cartilage is deteriorating, which may lead to more significant problems like arthritis in the near future. The cushion that prevents our joints from friction is known as the cartilage. As we grow older or at times as we grow fatter, the cartilages deteriorate, and the joints start coming closer to each other, which means more friction. However, thanks to Mother Nature, there are a few foods that can help you improve your joint health by regenerating knee cartilage naturally.
Before starting with the foods for your joint health, let us get a brief idea about the mysteries of our own body.
Stages Of Cartilage Damage
- Stages I and II of cartilage damage are early stages. Once cartilage gets damaged, in its place fibrous cartilage is formed which has very poor mechanical strength.
- Presence of fibrous cartilage makes the joint susceptible to further injuries and it becomes very difficult to carry out normal activities like walking, running, yoga and sports. Reduced physical activity will lead to diseases associated with sedentary lifestyle such as diabetes, obesity, hypertension and cardiovascular disorders.
- A stage IV arthritic joint needs to be replaced by Total Knee Replacement Surgery.
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How Does Cartilage Regrowth & Regeneration Work
MACI cartilage regeneration is done in a staged approach:
Though this procedure is done in a staged approach, it is minimally invasive, which makes recovery easier on the patient.
Osteoarticular Transfer System Procedure
The OATS procedure, also called mosaicplasty, involves taking healthy cartilage from non-weight-bearing areas of the joint and transplanting it into the damaged areas. Because the transfer happens within the same joint, this procedure works best for small areas of damaged cartilage. Joints significantly affected by osteoarthritis may require a different approach. Since your own tissue is used, the OATS procedure eliminates risks related to allergy or transplant rejection.
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Can You Repair Cartilage
For a long time, people assumed that it was impossible for cartilage to grow back. However, this assumption turned out to be completely wrong or at least half-wrong.
There are some ways that you can stimulate cartilage repair and regeneration.
it is just that even when actively helping cartilage to grow back, it still takes a long time for cartilage tissue to grow.
Just ignoring a cartilage injury is not the correct approach left to its own devices, cartilage tissue is extremely slow to regenerate. It is a complex tissue which uses relatively sparse components. Just as it takes longer for bones to heal than it does for your skin, it takes longer for cartilage to regenerate than it does for bone tissue to grow its just the way it is!
But there are some things you can do to greatly accelerate cartilage production and maintenance. The most effective and reliable method is to use natural supplements known to promote cartilage regeneration.
Some supplements are able to stimulate the growth of cartilage cells. A prime example is glucosamine an amino sugar which is used as a building block for your connective tissues, including cartilage. Supplementing with glucosamine has been shown to increase cartilage production.
Does Worn Or Damaged Cartilage Grow Back
If given the proper conditions and effective medical or surgical treatments, your worn or damaged cartilages can grow back with time and patience. Cartilage is a tissue present at the end of the bones of the joints that helps in lubrication and load bearing. Cartilages are made of chondrocytes cells that are bathed in a rich extracellular matrix, possessing a complex biochemical composition.
Do cartilages have the self-repairing ability?
Before knowing how worn or damaged cartilage grows back, lets find out what limits a cartilage from self-healing:
A cut on your skin heals faster because reparative cells can travel faster to your wounds with the help of blood supply. Since, cartilages and ligaments have no direct blood supply to them, hence reparative cells, such as fibroblasts, nutrients and other factors that help in such repairs cannot reach to the site of damage and thus, limits its healing potential. In a research it was seen that, though cartilages do not involve fibrin clot formation, they are actively resistant to vascularization by producing anti angiogenic components.
Medical Treatments for Cartilage Regrowth
Here are some ways to regenerate/ repair/ replace worn or damaged cartilages:
Minimally invasive surgical methods for cartilage repair include options like: Chondroplasty and Debridement. Other methods include: Knee Microfracture, Knee Drilling and Knee Abrasion Arthroplasty.
Other Important factors for cartilage regrowth
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Symptoms Of Cartilage Damage
Symptoms of cartilage damage in a joint include:
- joint pain this may continue even when resting and worsen when you put weight on the joint
- swelling this may not develop for a few hours or days
- a clicking or grinding sensation
- the joint locking, catching, or giving way
It can sometimes be difficult to tell a cartilage injury apart from other common joint injuries, such as sprains, as the symptoms are similar.
Knee Cartilage Repair Regeneration And Replacement
There are two primary types of cartilage in the knee: articular cartilage and meniscus . SeeSoft Tissue of the Knee Joint
These surgeries can be performed on almost any joint, but they are most commonly performed on knees. They are generally appropriate for people who have specific cartilage injuries rather than widespread cartilage damage, like that found in moderate to severe knee arthritis.
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Can You Regrow Joint Cartilage
05/12/2020 | 7 min. read
Dr. David Williams
Over the years, there has been a lot of debate as to whether our bodies have the capability to repair and regrow damaged joint cartilage.
It seems that most scientists outrightly dismissed the idea based on the fact that mature cartilage doesnt have a blood supply. Without a blood supply, it was believed there was no way the body could supply joint cartilage with the necessary raw materials to enable it to regrow.
Yet, others have seen or personally experienced very meaningful changes in joint health when certain protocols and diet have been followed.
Cartilage Is Grown In The Arthritic Joints Of Mice
Researchers discovered a way to awaken dormant stem cells and transform them into cartilage. If the technique works in humans, it may help ease debilitating joint pain.
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By Gina Kolata
The painful knees and hips experienced by so many people with osteoarthritis result from a loss of cartilage, which serves as a sort of cushioning in the joints. It had long been thought that cartilage, once gone, cannot grow back.
Now researchers at Stanford University have grown new cartilage in the joints of arthritic mice. Primitive cells that can be transformed into new cartilage lie dormant at the ends of bones, the researchers reported in Nature Medicine. The cells just have to be awakened and stimulated to grow.
The researchers say the next step is to try to grow cartilage in larger animals, like dogs or pigs. They are optimistic that the finding could eventually lead to treatments to prevent the often debilitating pain that arises when cartilage erodes away.
It is really a major advance in field of osteoarthritis, said Dr. Gerard Karsenty, a bone specialist at Columbia University who was not involved in the research.
Although scientists often question whether findings in mice may apply to humans, diseases of the skeleton often do, he added.
What Limits Cartilage Healing
Cartilage doesnt have a direct blood supply, which makes injury healing sluggish. The same goes for ligaments and tendons. When you have a direct blood supply to tissues, nutrients and reparative cells like fibroblasts can get there fast. With no blood supply, the injured tissue has to rely on absorption or other means to get nutrients in.
This is why joints, whose main structures are cartilage, ligaments and tendons, take so long to heal when injured and often require surgery. Once you hurt it, it can take months, even years before it fully heals, if it does at all. ACL tears of the knee meniscal tears, rotator cuff tears, and tendonitis are known for their stubbornness in healing and their tendency to become chronic.
But, do you really need a direct blood supply in order for chondrocytes to make cartilage? Thats the assumption.
Lets talk about where these chondrocytes originate.
How Osteoarthritis Gets Going
One of the affects of aging is that the hypothalamus secretes less human growth hormone , the youth hormone. And one of the functions of HGH, true to its nickname is to maintain muscle mass, and cartilage in the knees and elsewhere. This is why kids are able to run and jump off rooftops and keep going with no problem. Doing this is not such a good idea if youre over 40.
With lower levels of HGH, the cartilage starts to thin and lose elasticity, probably because of less water content and degraded collagen strands from oxidative stress.
The pounding from walking forms tiny cracks to appear, which develop into pits that can gradually expand in size. If you are overweight, it compounds the problem. Small fragments of cartilage break off the bone and deposit inside the knee, interfering with movement and generating an inflammatory reaction. Bare bone is exposed and walking becomes painful. This is the typical sequence of events that lead to knee replacement surgery.
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How Long Does It Take For Cartilage To Grow Back
It can take cartilage between 3 and 6 months to grow back. For severe cartilage damage, the cartilage may never fully grow back. Using specific supplements like chondroitin and MSM can help cartilage grow back faster.
How long does it take cartilage to grow back completely?
If youve found that youre experiencing aches and pains from your joints, or youve recently suffered a serious injury which damaged your cartilage, then you are probably wondering how long it is going to take for the cartilage to grow back.
This is something that we get asked all the time. People looking for the best joint supplement are often actually looking for a cartilage regrowth supplement they dont care so much about promoting long-term joint health and flexibility as they do about fixing worn-down cartilage! We know this because people typically only start to worry about their joints when it is almost too late, once all the damage has been done!
Is it possible to actually regrow cartilage?
What supplements can you use to regrow cartilage?
How long does it take for cartilage to start to grow back?
Lets dig deeper into this topic and try to answer these questions together.
Humans Have Always Had The Ability To Regrow Tissue
For years, scientists have acknowledged that humans have some ability to regenerate tissue: when childrens fingertips are amputated, the tips can sometimes regenerate if treated correctly. The scientific community thought that these regenerative capabilities were limited to children and that humans were unable to counteract long term cumulative damage to their joints. This new research seems to disprove this theory.
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Collagen Inside Ankles Has More Turnover Than That In Hips Thanks To The Action Of Micrornas
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Humans, unlike some lucky members of the animal kingdom, have a very limited ability to regrow damaged or missing body parts. But a study published yesterday in Science Advances finds that we can generate new proteins in joint cartilage, and this ability is more pronounced in joints farther from the center of the body, such as the ankles, than in those nearer in, such as the hips. The mechanism for this ability resembles that used by animals such as salamanders and axolotls to regrow lost limbs.
We believe that an understanding of this salamander-like regenerative capacity in humans, and the critically missing components of this regulatory circuit, could provide the foundation for new approaches to repair joint tissues and possibly whole human limbs, says coauthor Virginia Kraus, who researches osteoarthritis at Duke University School of Medicine, in a university press release.
Kraus and her colleagues analyzed proteins from cartilage tissue from human hips, knees, and ankles for changes to amino acids that occur with time. We suddenly started noticing that the ankle proteins tended by and large to be much younger than the same proteins in the knee and the same proteins in the hip, Kraus tells The Guardian.
Shawna Williams is an associate editor at The Scientist. Email her at or follow her on Twitter .