Claire King, 57, who’s played the role of Kim Tate in ITV’s Emmerdale since 1989, has been open about her almost 30-year battle with rheumatoid arthritis. Rheumatoid arthritis is a long-term condition that causes painful joints, as well as stiffness and swelling. The condition is something her mother Angela also has. Speaking to Mail Online in 2017, Claire revealed: “I was shocked and devastated when I was diagnosed with arthritis at 30. You presume it’s an older person’s disease. Nowadays, I have had to give up bombing round on a race horse at 40 miles an hour but I still go for a hack.
It doesn’t hold me back, it’s manageable. You’ve just got to get on with it
“It doesn’t hold me back, it’s manageable. You’ve just got to get on with it.”
The actress discovered she had rheumatoid arthritis after going to the doctors with throbbing and painful fingers. A blood test then confirmed the condition.
But Claire hasn’t let arthritis get the better of her, and has found relief in health eating, exercise and supplements.
The star became interested in natural treatments when her brother started a supplements business.
She revealed she takes omega 3 – a supplement which has demonstrated its ability to improve symptoms in a number of studies.
Claire also takes B vitamins, including vitamin B12, as it reduces homocysteine, an amino acid found in high levels in people with rheumatoid arthritis which increases pain and inflammation.
In addition, Claire takes methylsulfonylmethane (MSM), a naturally occurring form of sulphur that is believed by some to help maintain cartilage and joints.
Unfortunately arthritis isn’t the only health condition the actress has endured over the years.
In 2010, Claire had a hysterectomy as a result of having fibroids – non-cancerous growths that develop in or around the womb.
Speaking to Mirror.co.uk in 2015 she said: “I was in agony with fibroids.
“I was told in no uncertain terms by my doctors that time had run out for me on the baby front.
“Even the idea of using a donor egg was gone because I needed a radical hysterectomy.”
Alongside having fibroids and a hysterectomy and arthritis, Claire was left with facial paralysis after having shingles.
The star joked: “I’m falling to bits really.”
What are the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis?
The main symptoms of the condition are listed by the NHS as:
- Swelling warmth and redness
Additional symptoms may include tiredness and a lack of energy, a high temperature, sweating, a poor appetite and weight loss.
If you experience any of these symptoms, see your GP.
Another Emmerdale who’s been open about her health, particularly during her pregnancy, is Charley Webb.
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