Alternative Medicine Foods & Health

Why Joint Pain Is A Serious Health Signal

Most people with chronic joint pain miss the real significance of their symptoms. That’s because the significance of joint pain goes far beyond its obvious symptoms of discomfort.

Most people with chronic joint pain miss the real significance of their symptoms.

That’s because the significance of joint pain goes far beyond its obvious symptoms of discomfort. Regardless of whether the pain is worse with movement or after periods of inactivity or both, the underlying message your body is sending is that there’s inflammation present.

Now before you dismiss the obvious connection between chronic inflammation and joint pain, consider that even though symptoms show up in the joints, the inflammation is affecting the entire body.

This type of body-wide inflammation has effects that go deeper than the pain itself. In fact, chronic inflammation is directly associated with many additional serious health problems.

Inflammation-related Health Issues

To understand the process more clearly, consider these inflammation-related health issues:

  • Blood Clots: Inflammation creates a tendency for blood clots to form, which is good if there’s an acute injury (stops bleeding), but bad if it becomes a permanent situation (can lead to strokes, heart attacks and deep vein thrombosis)
  • Immune Stress: There is an immune response to the inflamed tissues, so when the inflammation is there for a long time, it puts a strain on the immune system
  • Adrenal Fatigue: The adrenals respond to the inflammatory process by releasing corticosteroid hormones – as a result, over time chronic inflammation can lead to adrenal fatigue
  • Oxidative Stress: Circulating free radicals are generated when there is inflammation – this creates damage to tissues in every part of the body
  • Joint Damage: Inflammation releases collagenase, which further damages the joint protective substance collagen
  • Connective Tissue Damage: Inflammation also triggers release of elastase, which damages the connective tissue substance, elastin
  • C-Reactive Protein: Inflammation triggers massive release of C-reactive protein (CRP) in the liver, which in turn causes further inflammation

In other words, inflammation, the underlying cause of joint pain, ages the body much more rapidly than would otherwise happen. The immune system weakens, the adrenals get tired, tissues are damaged and the ability of the body to bounce back diminishes.

As a result, chronic inflammation gradually weakens the entire body and reduces its ability to fight infection, adapt and regenerate.

Perceived this way, joint pain can be understood as a kind of early warning signal telling us that there are serious health issues going on in the body behind the scenes. Unless something changes, these can lead to much worse problems eventually.

These worse problems associated with chronic inflammation include cancer, heart disease, strokes, diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease. This makes addressing the inflammation a very high priority. Not only does addressing it at a deeper level alleviate the pain symptoms, but it also helps avoid potential future deadly health problems.

But how can this inflammation be addressed at a deeper level?

What Is The Real Cause of Inflammation In The First Place?

There are two primary complicating factors that create inflammation:

  1. Metabolic Processes: Biochemically there are literally dozens of processes associated with inflammation. These range from the effects of eating trans-fatty acids to the presence of the COX-2 inflammatory enzyme.
  2. Blocking Factors: There are also potential blocking factors (toxic heavy metals, environmental pollutants, emotional stress) that interfere with normal body functioning. Some of this interference triggers inflammation.

If you think this all seems complicated, you’re right.

Fortunately there are some basic principles that address both of these complicating factors very effectively. These principles are the foundation for eliminating joint pain and restoring health naturally. These principles are:

  1. Provide High Quality “Raw Materials” For Metabolic Processes. At its most fundamental level, this means eating the most nutrient-rich food as close to its natural state as possible. That means no processed, denatured or artificial foods.
  2. Reduce The Toxic Load On The Body & Increase Detoxification Capacity. This means supporting detoxification by the liver, intestines, lungs, kidneys and skin. At the same time, identifying possible toxins that may be present and eliminating them appropriately so as not to cause undue stress on the body.

When done correctly, following these two principles reduces joint pain substantially and often even eliminates it. And as a big bonus, it also reduces the secondary health-damaging consequences of inflammation elsewhere in the body.

So by understanding joint pain as a serious health warning, and addressing it naturally, not only is the pain reduced, but also overall health increases.

All the best to you for your health and happiness,

Dr. Bruce Eichelberger

Dr. Bruce



Hyperhealth Pro Database, In-Tele-Health, Hansville, WA, 2008.

Cotran, R. S., et al. Pathologic Basis of Disease, 4th edition. Philadelphia,PA: WB Saunders Co; 1989.

Faloon, W. Chronic inflammation: the epidemic disease of aging. Life Extension. 8(1), 2002.

Brandt, K. D. Effects of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs on chondrocyte metabolism in vitro and in vivo. American Journal of Medicine. 83(Suppl. 5A):29-34, 1987.

Dean, W. C-reactive protein: biomarker and cardiovascular risk factor – what to do about it. Vitamin Research News. 17(12), 2003.

4 replies on “Why Joint Pain Is A Serious Health Signal”

I have joint pain and it is not at fixed body part but its moving around the body like some time its at hip joint ,some time at shoulder ,back , neck .
Please sir tell me what is the problem and solution

Dear Hemang,

Please re-read the above article. It lists several causes and contributing factors in joint pain. Some of these will apply to you.

Also, in Chinese Medicine, pain that moves is called “Wind Pain.” It is part of the pattern called, “Wind Damp Cold Painful Obstruction.” This is also known as bi syndrome. In Western Medicine, arthritis fits into this category.

Obviously I cannot give you a proper diagnosis in a blog comment. However you should consider visiting a Doctor of Oriental Medicine near you. Look for someone who is very practiced using herbal medicine.

All the best,

Dr. Bruce

I have what appears to be chronic system wide joint pain. It seems to be getting worse, and causes me to lose sleep at night. Neither my SED or CRP came back elevated, which leaves me puzzled. I have no swelling, redness, or warmth-just constant pain in all of my joints. I also literally hurt all over. What do you think could potentially be causing this? Should I see a Rheumatogolist?

Hi Renee,

Sorry to hear about your joint pain. If you want a definitive Western diagnosis, a Rheumatologist can provide that.

However a diagnosis and effective treatment are not necessarily the same thing. Basically they have three approaches they can take. Pain meds, anti-inflammatories and in the case of RA, immune suppressing drugs. All of these can be helpful in reducing symptoms when prescribed appropriately. However, they can’t correct the underlying issues.

Obviously, I cannot give you a useful diagnosis or recommendation for your specific situation in a blog comment. However in general I will say that I’ve seen major improvements in these sorts of symptoms with a two-pronged approach. First, identify and remove any factors blocking health. These include toxins, heavy metal accumulation, stress and energetic blocks. Second, restore healthy balance.

A surprising number of symptoms can be eliminated or dramatically improved when addressed this way. Personally, I use acupuncture and dietary adjustments (Metabolic Typing) as my primary approach. Depending on what someone’s response is, there are additional tests and treatments that can make a great difference.

If you have specific questions, please feel free to write me using the contact form on this website. I answer emails personally.

Dr. Bruce

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