If you have arthritis, you probably know that treatment can often involve anti-inflammatory measures. Research shows that includes what you eat.
Adding anti-inflammatory foods to your diet that can limit triggering joint pain can make a big difference for those suffering from arthritis.
Here are seven items to be cognizant of:
1. Alcohol and tobacco. These two can contribute to a host of health problems, but those who drink alcohol have a higher risk of developing gout, and smokers are at risk for developing rheumatoid arthritis. Consider reducing smoking and drinking, as well as trying to find time to engage in some type of physical activity, get a good night’s sleep and work on creating a clean eating plan for yourself.
2. Corn oil. There are a lot of snacks and baked goods that can trigger inflammation, due to containing corn or other oils high in omega-6 fatty acids. While the Mayo Clinic says fish oil may help with joint pain, you can also replace some of those omega 6 fatty acid-containing food with anti-inflammatory items like pumpkin seeds, nuts, flax seeds and olive oil.
3. Dairy. There’s a type of protein in dairy that can cause irritation of the tissue around the joints for some people, but conflicting evidence claims milk has anti-inflammatory effects. Either way, if you’re having issues, try cutting it out for a few weeks and see how you feel.
4. Foods cooked at high temperatures. When foods are heated, grilled, fried or pasteurized, a toxin called advanced glycation end product (AGE) appears and it can damage certain proteins in the body. As a result, it could cause arthritis or other forms of inflammation, depending on where it occurs.
5. Fried and processed foods. This might not be news to you, but studies have found that decreasing processed and fried foods can aid in restoring the body’s natural defenses and reducing inflammation. Try to cut back on friend meats, prepared frozen meals and instead opt for more fruit and vegetables.
6. Sugars and refined carbs. These carbs can result in an increase in AGEs, which we noted before. Cut out these carbs wherever and whenever you can.
7. Salt and preservatives. Always read labels. Plenty of foods have excessive salt or other preservatives to give it a longer shelf life. The problem is, salt can lead to inflammation of the joints. Try to reduce your salt intake, which can be done be eating fewer prepared foods, which are often high in sodium.