Lubricate Your Joints

Drink lots of water

Please note: This article was published more than one year ago. The facts and conclusions presented may have since changed and may no longer be accurate. And "More information" links may no longer work. Questions about personal health should always be referred to a physician or other health care professional.

(HealthDayNews) -- Castor oil, cod liver oil, or honey often are suggested to relieve the pain of osteoarthritis, under the theory that these fluids travel to the joints and lubricate them.Not so, says rheumatologist Richard P. Crane of New York City's Mt. Sinai Hospital. Oil and honey don't travel anywhere but through the digestive system. Joints are lubricated by synovial fluid, which is mostly water, as are the cushions of cartilage.

Because cartilage does dry out with age, it can't hurt to drink the two quarts of plain water your body needs daily. (Many people -- especially older women -- don't drink enough water.) This will make all of your organs and tissues function as smoothly as possible.

And while it's true that certain oils do have a place in arthritis therapy (fish oil and evening primrose oil, for example, have been shown to reduce pain and joint inflammation in some patients) they don't act as "lubrication." Ask your doctor if they're appropriate for you.

Last Updated: