Is arthritis pain making your lose sleep? Try this

In the 2002 movie “Insomnia,” Al Pacino plays a Los Angeles detective looking for a suspect in the land of the midnight sun -- an Alaskan town named Nightmute (we kid you not). His character, Dormer, is racked with insomnia caused by personal and professional problems and the endless daylight.

For the 32.5 million Americans with osteoarthritis, problems with insomnia hit closer to home. It’s estimated that about 70% of them contend with sleep problems because of nagging pain. The sleep disturbances then make the pain worse. And around and around. It goes in a vicious cycle. Anything that can ease the insomnia is welcome.

A study in JAMA Network, called OATS (Osteoarthritis and Therapy for Sleep), shows that Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia delivered over the phone can ease sleep woes, reduce arthritis pain and lessen insomnia-related anxiety. All it takes is six 20- to 30-minute telephone sessions over eight weeks. We suggest you consider adding CBT-I to a routine of other smart ways of easing osteoarthritis pain. 

First, talk to your doc about taking the supplement ASU (avocado/soybean unsaponifiables) three times a day. It’s been shown to ease joint pain and stiffness and decrease reliance on NSAIDs and other pain relievers. Also, try acupuncture and do exercises recommended by your doctor to strengthen muscles surrounding sore joints. Then, to find a phone-based CBT-I therapist, go to www.findcbt.org or call the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies at 212-647-1890. Call the potential therapists to get started. That’ll leave you feeling your OATS!

Want your nutrition to mushroom? Then mushrooms it is

Why did the mushroom go to the party? Because he’s a fungi! But there’s so much more to a mushroom than a good time! A new study in Food & Nutrition Research uncovered the amazing nutritional bounty the happy ‘shroom can add to your diet. 

About five medium white button mushrooms or 3 ounces (84 grams) of cremini or portabellas increase the average American’s daily potassium intake by 8% to 12%, selenium by 11% to 23%, riboflavin/B2 by 12% to 18% and niacin by 11% to 26%. Vitamin D in mushrooms exposed to UV light -- most are -- provides 200 IUs of the vitamin per serving, upping most folks’ daily dose by a whopping 67% to 90%. But mushrooms add virtually no calories, carbs, fat or sodium on their own. 

This research adds to the earlier findings in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey that showed that eating 3 ounces also increases the average American’s daily intake of fiber by 5% to 6%; copper intake by 24% to 32% and zinc by 5% to 6%.

If you are looking for great ways to add mushrooms to your diet, try these: slice them into salads or add to soups, sauteed veggies, and fish or skinless chicken dishes. You can even make them a meal in themselves. Check out the recipes for Mushroom MLT and Farro-Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms in Dr. Mike’s “What to Eat When Cookbook.” Bonus: Go to health.clevelandclinic.org and search for mushroom coffee! 

Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of “The Dr. Oz Show,” and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Wellness Officer Emeritus at Cleveland Clinic. To live your healthiest, tune into “The Dr. Oz Show” or visit www.sharecare.com. (c)2021 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D. Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.

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