T Nation

Joints and Nutrition


#1

recently (well for the past 3 months really), I have been noticing that my bones/joints/whatever they are crack a lot more than usual. I asked my sister, who is a doctor, about this and she immediately pointed out that it could be due to high nitrogen levels caused by a high protein diet. I eat approximately 225g of protein a day (i weigh approx. 170) and I was wondering if this could truly be the case, or whether it could be caused by something else.

i feel it may be because when I went on vacation for 3 weeks and had a diet with only about 125g protein/day the cracking seemed to go away.

I was also wondering if this cracking could be a sign of something bad, or could lead to problems in my future, beacuse right now i just see it as irritating, but it doesnt hurt at all.

thanks


#2

do you take a high quality fish oil?


#3

Is anything in your life that presented itself in the last few months that didn't exist before? That was a kind of clumsy sentence...what I mean is, have you taken up a new activity, or a new job that has changed your general mobility? New exercise routine? New bed? New favorite chair? Consider all those types of factors first. Also...which joints? Or most of your joints in general? There are so many factors to consider, but if it's something that just recently popped up look at what else might be new in your life, the chance of correlation and causation is usually more probable.

Is it indicative of a serious problem? Impossible to tell at this point, over the internet, with no other knowledge of your background, age, training history, and the like. In the meantime, consider trying some extra stretching routines, maybe a little yoga. Pay extra attention to your ergonomic situation (i.e., how your body functions within its environment)...even weird little things like a new backpack, new car seat, new shoes, or anything that might force your body to make an adjustment even if it's not something that catches your attention immediately.

If you're really worried about it, make sure to do some research on a doctor before you go -- more often than not, a physician's knowledge of nutrition and especially sport-related nutrition comes from what they study on their own outside of medical school. You can sometimes tell approximately what year a doctor graduated from med school based on their immediate comments on nutritional matters. Look for an orthopedic surgeon with sports medicine sub-specialty.


#4

i take two (sometimes four) "triple-strength" omega-3 fish oil tablets (vitamin world brand) every day. they have about 950 mg of epa/dha each so im getting about 2g a day.

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and not sure if this is any help but I am only 18 and have only been seriously lifting for about 8 months now. It seems to be all my joints, but my knees seem to be the most frequent, probably just because i use them a lot (lol?)


#5

You're only 18 and you've only been lifting for 8 months? The chance of it being diet related is really low unless you have some serious renal or metabolic illness. It's most likely your body is still growing and adjusting. Keep paying attention to your body, but I wouldn't worry unless you started to develop significant chronic joint pain. At your age it's entirely possible that your epiphyses (the cartilaginous ends of bones that grow to accommodate your eventual full height and skeletal frame) haven't closed and hardened, and joint cracks might just be part of your body's natural adjustment. I had a similar thing with my knees and elbows when I was your age -- for me it was from constant fencing drills. Sure, you should still pay attention to see if the condition worsens, but for now don't sweat it. You may well be quite literally having growing pains.