Aging, arthritis or lack of regular exercise can contribute to a lack of flexibility. Joint and muscle health directly influence flexibility and, according to nutritionists at the University of Hawaii, can be affected by your vitamin intake 1. Moderate doses of specific vitamins have also been found to alleviate arthritis-related discomfort and help maintain bone strength, as well as improving flexibility. Eating a healthy, well-balanced diet can provide the vitamins your muscles and joints need to stay healthy and flexible.
Vitamin D works with calcium to protect joints and build bone strength, both of which can lead to improved flexibility. Vitamin D is often added to dairy products, such as milk and yogurt, and is also found in fish and fish oils. Your body can also make vitamin D when your skin is exposed to sunlight, though make sure to use sunscreen if you are going to be outdoors for a while.
Vitamins That Help Broken Bones
Several B-vitamins may offer increased flexibility. Some studies suggest that niacin can greatly reduce the risk of developing osteoarthritis, according to Nathan Wei, M.D., a board-certified rheumatologist. Vitamin B-5, or pantothenic acid, is provided by foods such as:
- wheat germ
- whole grain cereals
Vitamin B-6 is found in meat, fish, nuts, legumes and bananas.
Vitamin C is “essential for making specific proteins that are part of joint cartilage” and can be “an especially important nutrient for joint health,” according to the University of Hawaii. Foods high in vitamin C include fruits and vegetables such as:
- dark leafy greens
- red peppers
Can Any Supplements Help Stretch Marks?
Like vitamin C, vitamin E contain antioxidants, which some research suggests can help with joint health, notes the University of Hawaii. Vitamin E can help alleviate leg cramps and pain associated with osteoarthritis by relieving inflammation. According to the Alive website, vitamin E also prevents internal scarring and helps repair connective tissues.
Vitamins That Help Broken Bones
Can Any Supplements Help Stretch Marks?
Can Certain Vitamins Help Tight Muscles?
Vitamin D Deficiency & Blurred Vision
Vitamins for Ligament Repair
Vitamins & Minerals for Muscle Spasms
Vitamins That Increase Dopamine
Which Vitamin Is Good for Pain in the Legs?
What Vitamins are Good for Thin Skin?
Vitamins for Varicose Veins
- University of Hawaii at Manoa, ATC: Easy Stretch to Maintain Flexibility
- Dynamic Chiropractic: A Quick Review of Vitamin Toxicity
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- Gorham ED, Garland CF, Garland FC, Grant WB, Mohr SB, Lipkin M, Newmark HL, Giovannucci E, Wei M, Holick MF. Optimal Vitamin D Status for Colorectal Cancer Prevention: a Quantitative Meta-analysis. Am J Prev Med. 2007 Mar;32(3):210-6.
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- Salehpour A1, Hosseinpanah F, Shidfar F, Vafa M, Razaghi M, Dehghani S, Hoshiarrad A, Gohari M. A 12-week Double-blind Randomized Clinical Trial of Vitamin D₃ Supplementation on Body Fat Mass in Healthy Overweight and Obese Women. Nutr J. 2012 Sep 22;11:78. doi: 10.1186/1475-2891-11-78.
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Based in the Southwest, Linsay Evans writes about a range of topics, from parenting to gardening, nutrition to fitness, marketing to travel. Evans holds a Master of Library and Information Science and a Master of Arts in anthropology.