Koslo's Nutrition Solutions

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Sesame seeds for joint pain?

Suffering from joint pain?

I love clinical evidence that shows that food truly is medicine so I was skeptical yet quite intrigued when I saw a recent study that showed that adding just over a serving a day of sesame seeds to the diets of people with osteoarthritis significantly reduced their pain. Sound too good to be true? From what I can tell the study is legit so if you have joint pain you may want to read on.

Sesame seeds may sound like an unlikely treatment for the pain of arthritis, but according to the results of a clinical trial published in the International Journal of Rheumatic Diseases they are quite effective. I was a bit skeptical at first thinking the study probably used a ridiculously large quantity or had a very small sample size or something else that would weaken the results. However, the study used a daily dose of 40g of powdered sesame seeds, which is just over a quarter cup, and is a quantity that could easily be worked into the diet.

The objective of the study was to compare the effectiveness of sesame seeds in reducing pain and inflammation versus treatment with Tylenol and glucosamine.

One group took just the sesame powder and the second group took two 500mg treatments of Tylenol twice a day along with 500 mg of glucosamine once daily. At the end of the study, the sesame group saw a significant reduction in pain compared to the drug therapy group. Not only that, but the sesame group didn’t have any of the side effects commonly associated with popular NSAIDs (Tylenol, for example), such as lightheadedness and the risk of liver damage with prolonged use.

Open Sesame!

Pretty impressive results wouldn’t you say? So how do the seeds reduce pain or in other words, where do they get their superpowers?

Sesame seeds contain a number of important minerals related to bone health including copper, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus and zinc. Of those, copper naturally reduces inflammation by playing a key role in activating several anti-inflammatory and antioxidant enzyme systems. It also activates an enzyme that your body needs to create collagen and elastin, which provide strength, elasticity and structure to your bones and joints. Just a mere quarter-cup of sesame seeds supplies about 74 percent of the recommended daily intake of copper!

How to Enjoy This Mighty Seed

If you have joint pain, this is such an simple thing to do to see if it helps and there are literally no downsides. So what do you have to lose? And really, adding sesame seeds to your diet is so easy and may lead you to try some new recipes. You can buy them prepackaged or in bulk bins at most grocery and healthy food stores. Because they have a high oil content and are subject to rancidity, check the use by dates on packages and ask store clerks how often they are replaced in the bulk bins. After you buy them, store them in an airtight container in a cool, dark place like your refrigerator or freezer.

The study used powdered sesame seeds so that they would be digested more easily. I suggest doing the same: just grind them lightly in a coffee grinder or mortar and pestle. You can use sesame seeds anywhere you would normally use flax seeds as well as in Middle Eastern and Asian dishes:
  •     Sprinkle them on your oatmeal or yogurt
  •    Use them in baked goods
  •   Add them to smoothies
  •   Use them as a garnish on salads
  •   Use tahini to make hummus or drizzle it on bread
  •  Sprinkle them in stir-fry’s or use them as “breading” for meats

Enjoy experimenting and post a comment if you give it a try.


At November 6, 2015 at 9:47 PM , Blogger Unknown said...

great tips Thank you for this information. It is really informative and helpful for the people. Chia Seeds

At April 2, 2016 at 4:46 AM , Blogger Unknown said...

A very good and informative article indeed. It helps me a lot to enhance my knowledge, I really like the way the writer presented his views.Sierrasil Calgary


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