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Foods to Avoid If You Have Arthritis

a glass of alcohol and a paper where bad habits is written

Foods to Avoid If You Have Arthritis

Arthritis is a common condition that causes chronic joint inflammation. It causes discomfort and damage to joints, bones, and other physiological components depending on the type. Although there are over 100 types of osteoarthritis, noninflammatory osteoarthritis is the most common. In fact, up to 40% of men and 47% of women may be diagnosed with osteoarthritis at some point in their lives. 

Meanwhile, autoimmune disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and psoriatic arthritis are inflammatory ailments. Another type of inflammatory arthritis is gout. Making dietary modifications can assist with osteoarthritis symptoms like pain, stiffness, and swelling, according to many people. 

In the U. S., osteoarthritis is the most common kind of arthritis, affecting about 30 million adults. As the cartilage in the joints deteriorates over time, this condition develops. The condition can affect any joint in the body, although the knees, hands, hips, and spine are the most typically affected.

Although specific meals or nutritional supplements cannot cure osteoarthritis, the Arthritis Foundation claims that certain diets can help patients with their symptoms. Some foods have anti-inflammatory properties that can help alleviate symptoms, while others can exacerbate them. 

What foods make arthritis worse?

The following are some of the ways that a healthy diet might help with osteoarthritis:

  • Added sugars

Sugar should be avoided at all costs, especially if you have arthritis. Candy, soda, ice cream, and a variety of other meals, including less obvious things like barbecue sauce, include added sugars. Furthermore, sugary beverages such as soda may raise your risk of developing arthritis. 

  • Processed meats and red meats

Inflammation is linked to red and processed meat, which may exacerbate arthritis symptoms. Diets enriched in processed and red meats, for example, raise inflammatory markers like interleukin-6 (IL-6), C-reactive protein (CRP), and homocysteine.

  • Foods containing gluten 

Gluten is a protein present in grains such as wheat, barley, rye, and triticale (a cross between wheat and rye). According to some studies, it is linked to increased inflammation, and becoming gluten-free food may help with arthritic symptoms. 

Similarly, people with autoimmune disorders, such as RA, have a far higher risk of celiac disease than the general population.

  • Foods that have been heavily processed 

Ultra-processed meals like fast food, breakfast cereal, and baked goods are high in refined carbohydrates, added sugar, preservatives, and other potentially inflammatory components, many of which can worsen arthritis symptoms. As a result, processed meals may wreak havoc on your general health while also raising your risk of contracting additional diseases. 

  • Alcoholic beverages 

Alcohol should be limited or avoided by anyone with inflammatory arthritis since it might increase symptoms.

  • Several types of vegetable oils 

Osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis symptoms may be exacerbated by diets heavy in omega-6 fats and low in omega-3 fats. These healthy fats are essential for good health. However, in typical Western diets, the uneven ratio of omega-6s to omega-3s may exacerbate inflammation. 

Reducing your diet of omega-6 fats, such as vegetable oils, while increasing your intake of omega-3 fats, such as fatty fish, may help to alleviate arthritic symptoms. 

  • Sodium-rich foods 

Reduced salt intake may be beneficial to people with arthritis. Salt is abundant in shrimp, canned soup, pizza, some cheeses, processed meats, and a range of other processed meals.

  • Foods that are high in AGEs 

AGEs (advanced glycation end-products) are molecules formed when carbohydrates combine with proteins or lipids. They can be found in raw animal feeds and are generated by particular cooking procedures. 

Fried, roasted, grilled, seared, or broiled high protein, high-fat animal dishes are among the richest dietary sources of AGEs. Bacon, pan-fried or grilled steak, roasted or fried poultry, and broiled hot dogs are just a few examples. AGEs can also be found in French fries, American cheese, margarine, and mayonnaise. 

Oxidative stress and inflammation can arise when AGEs accumulate in large numbers in the body. In persons with arthritis, oxidative stress and AGE production are linked to disease progression. 

In fact, people with inflammatory arthritis have higher amounts of AGEs in their bodies than people who do not have arthritis. The accumulation of AGE in bones and joints may also contribute to the onset and progression of osteoarthritis. The total AGE load in your body can be reduced by replacing high AGE foods with healthy, whole foods including vegetables, fruits, legumes, and fish. 

Foods good for arthritis and gout 

Oily fish - Osteoarthritis patients should consume at least one portion of oily fish every week. Fish with a high oil content tend to involve:

  1. fresh tuna 
  2. sardines 
  3. mackerel 
  4. Salmon

Oils - Avocado and safflower oils are both nutritious and may aid in cholesterol reduction. 

Dairy - Calcium and vitamin D are abundant in milk, yoghurt, and cheese. These nutrients aid in the strengthening of bones, which may aid in the reduction of unpleasant sensations. 

Dark leafy greens include the following: 

  1. collard 
  2. greens 
  3. spinach 
  4. kale 
  5. chard 

Other essential foods include:

  • Broccoli 
  • Green Tea 
  • Garlic 
  • Nuts

Take Away 

If you have arthritis, a healthy diet and way of living can help you feel better. Highly processed foods, red meat, fried foods, and beverages high in added sugars are among the foods and beverages to avoid. Keep in mind that lifestyle factors such as your level of activity, body weight, and smoking status all have a role in arthritis management.