Tendons were born to be loaded; they love it! The right amount of loading, or work for your tendons, keeps them strong, yet elastic. Overload, however, is a problem. Overload can happen from excess activity for the tendon’s capability (an over-enthusiastic beginning to a running program, for example). It can also happen from poor biomechanics, exactly what your physio can help with. But overload can also happen from too much weight on the tendons from obesity or even overweight. Overviews of the research are pretty clear: obesity is a risk factor for tendinopathy. In fact, a recent research review found that obesity was associated with rotator cuff tendinopathy, medial epicondylitis (tennis elbow), and Achilles tendinopathy. What’s more, obesity was linked with increased risk of supraspinatus tear, and also tendon rupture that required surgery!
A healthy diet plays a key role in avoiding obesity, defined as a BMI (body mass index) of at least 30. To state the obvious, it is also a key tool in weight reduction. Does diet affect tendinopathy? Well, you sure can use it to reduce your weight – so that will then be of benefit to your tendons.