Medically reviewed by Eric Venn-Watson, M.D.
Dealing with arthritis pain is difficult. The pain is persistent, can range from moderate to severe, and in some cases, can feel completely debilitating.
Although it is often thought of as a struggle of older generations, arthritis can happen to anyone, at any age. There are different types of arthritis, and two of the most common are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
We’ll discuss the differences between these two types of arthritis, talk about the causes, and discuss popular treatment options. We’ll also talk about how your cellular health plays a role in the development, prevention, and treatment of arthritis.
The most common form of arthritis is osteoarthritis. This type of arthritis is often age-related. This form of arthritis happens when the cartilage between your joints begins to deteriorate with age or injury.
Osteoarthritis generally occurs in the hands, hips, spine, and knees. Depending on a person’s level of activity, osteoarthritis (also referred to as degenerative arthritis) can occur more quickly.
You may develop osteoarthritis in only one joint, or in multiple joints, and the pain may differ depending on the area. In other words, some affected joints may have greater pain than others.
Symptoms of Osteoarthritis. Symptoms of osteoarthritis vary from person to person, but may include:
Causes of Osteoarthritis. Normally, osteoarthritis occurs because of age-related use on a joint. As we age, the cells that make up our tissues begin to break down, becoming weak and leaving the tissues and structures themselves in fragile condition.
Osteoarthritis can also occur as a result of injury, being overweight, and already having rheumatoid arthritis.
Treatments for Osteoarthritis. There’s no cure for osteoarthritis, but there are treatment options available that range from non-invasive, over-the-counter pain medications to complete surgical joint replacements.
You can improve your joint health and decrease your likelihood of developing osteoarthritis by maintaining a healthy weight, protecting yourself against injury when you engage in physical activity, and by taking steps to improve your cellular health (more on that last one in a bit!).
What is Rheumatoid Arthritis?
Unlike osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis is not a degenerative disease. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease, which means that the body develops an immune response to its own healthy tissue and begins to attack it.
In rheumatoid arthritis, the body begins to attack the membrane that lines the joints. Rheumatoid arthritis can wear away bone, cause deformity in the joints, cause fingers to bend and gnarl permanently.
Symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis causes intense pain that can come in spurts. Sometimes, a flare of rheumatoid arthritis can last for weeks at a time. Symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis include:
Causes of Rheumatoid Arthritis
Although experts don’t know what causes a person’s immune system to begin attacking healthy tissues and causing the start of rheumatoid arthritis, they’ve determined that some risk factors can make a person more susceptible to developing this condition.
Heredity, sex, age, and weight are all factors that can make you more susceptible to developing rheumatoid arthritis. Women develop rheumatoid arthritis more often than men, and being middle-aged and overweight can make you more likely to develop it.
Treatment of Rheumatoid ArthritisThere’s no cure for rheumatoid arthritis, but there are treatments that can help put it in remission and help you experience fewer flares. Rheumatoid arthritis also places you at a greater risk of developing other types of arthritis, including osteoarthritis.
Treatments vary, and include prescription medications, injections, lifestyle changes like learning to exercise and ambulate differently, and surgical intervention.
Because rheumatoid arthritis is an immune response, it can also be beneficial to start a cellular health program to help better control your immunity and strengthen compromised cells.
Cellular Health and Arthritis
It might seem strange to talk about cells when talking about arthritis, but the two are closely connected.
As we age, our cells become weak. The cell wall becomes flimsy, leaving our cells compromised and open to damage. When our cells are damaged, they don’t carry out cellular functions properly.
Cells that don’t function properly result in everything from visible signs of aging to serious metabolic diseases, and yes, even arthritic pain. When our cells aren’t damaged, they’re able to last longer and stay strong, which keeps our tissues and organs working as they should, for as long as they should.
C15:0 for Cellular Health
Obviously, we can’t give our cells their very own little multivitamins… or can we? A growing body of research suggests we can. Pentadecanoic acid, also known as C15:0, is an odd-chain saturated fatty acid that science supports as the first essential fatty acid to be discovered in 90 years.
An essential fatty acid means our bodies need it to function properly but don’t make enough of it to supply our needs. We need to get the needed C15:0 balance from our diets, or from supplements.
C15:0 can help support your joint health, starting in your cells:
C15:0 is a relatively unknown little fatty acid with big potential to help you maintain a healthier and happier lifestyle, for longer.
Unfortunately, you probably aren’t getting much in your diet. C15:0 is present in whole-fat dairy products, like whole milk and butter. For decades, we’ve followed dietary guidelines that have told us that all fat is bad, which has most of us drinking skim milk and using margarine with little to no C15:0. Further, whole fat dairy has much higher levels of even-chain saturated fats (like C16:0) that continue to be associated with poorer health and increased risk of inflammatory conditions.
Thankfully, we’ve got options. C15:0 is now available in a once a day, easy to take capsule that supplies you with a day’s worth of pure FA15™, a pure powder form of C15:0. Just one capsule a day is all you need to protect your cells, balance your immunity, and support your joint health.†*
You may not be able to prevent arthritis or cure it, but you can give your cells and your joints a fighting chance by increasing your daily intake of C15:0.
STEPHANIE VENN-WATSON, dvm, mph
Dr. Stephanie Venn-Watson is a veterinary epidemiologist dedicated to improving both human and animal health. Before co-founding Seraphina Therapeutics and Epitracker, Inc,. she worked for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, World Health Organization, and the Department of Defense. Dr. Venn-Watson has over 70 peer-reviewed scientific publications and is an inventor on 40+ patents. Her dedication to discovering natural compounds to improve global health has been featured in/on Forbes, NPR Science Friday, PBS, National Geographic, BBC, and more.
ERIC VENN-WATSON, MD
Dr. Eric Venn-Watson is a physician, US Navy veteran and serial entrepreneur. Prior to Seraphina Therapeutics, Eric founded multiple companies in therapeutics discovery, healthcare analytics, and medical device industries as well as working in leadership roles in several life science companies.