Living with arthritis in this day and age is more common than you know. In fact, up to 40% of men and 47% of women may be diagnosed with osteoarthritis during their lifetime. Both rheumatoid arthritis and Psoriatic arthritis are chronic inflammatory diseases. They are also auto-immune diseases that have no known causes. Having said that, they are also progressive diseases that means managing the condition is mostly carried out by lifestyle changes which ultimately slows down its effects and progress.
Arthritis, though a chronic, and painful health condition can be managed through a healthy diet. It has not been proven medically but people suffering from arthritis have claimed effective and positive results by changing their lifestyle and taking herbal supplements.
In most cases, people are aware that staying active and eating healthy would cure arthritis and bring about good results. However, they are not aware of the foods they should be avoiding while suffering from this disease.
We have got you covered, take a look at the following list of foods and beverages you must avoid if you are suffering from arthritis:
Refined Carbohydrates and Sugar
Whether or not you have a liking for sweets, it is the go-to food item for days when you wish to feel better emotionally or physically (during cramps and pains, etc.). The fact remains it is not easy to give up on sugary items and they are no less than addiction. Most of us, like our meals with soft drinks and other sugary sodas.
Sweet treats like cookies, pastries, candies, donuts, etc. are full of refined sugars which is harmful to the body. If you find glucose, fructose, or any word that ends in ‘ose’ in the ingredient list of the edible product you are purchasing; you must keep it back as it is packed with refined sugars. Other harmless products like baked goods and white bread are also packed with refined sugars which you must avoid to improve your health condition.
This one’s a shocker as it is a universal fact that dairy must be consumed to get enough vitamin D and calcium. It is encouraged and promoted right from our childhood to consume products rich in calcium, particularly, dairy. However, you also must know that dairy also increases inflammation in the body as it contains saturated fats. Therefore, you must keep a check on your dairy consumption. Lifestyles changes should not be sudden, you can gradually reduce dairy by switching to low-fat dairy products for starters.
Alcohol is toxic for your body regardless of your health condition. Nevertheless, it is one of the major contributing factors to inflammation. Moderate and occasional drinking is not harmful but if you are suffering from arthritis, you must avoid it at all costs. Another major reason why alcohol is not recommended is that it would hamper the effects of the strong medicines prescribed to a patient suffering from arthritis. Your body will not be positively receptive to the medicines. Therefore, a big no to alcohol and alcoholic beverages.
Processed and Red Meat
Again, inflammation is inevitable due to the consumption of processed and red meats. High levels of inflammatory markers like interleukin-6 (IL-6), C-reactive protein (CRP), and homocysteine are present in red meats and processed meats which are harmful to people suffering from arthritis. In a rather detailed study, it has been proven that people with Rheumatoid arthritis complained of conditions worsening due to diets heavy in red and processed meats.
Gluten is a family of proteins found in grains including barley, wheat, spelt, and rye. Wheat among all is the most of all gluten-containing grains. There have researches conducted to prove that gluten, after all, is a major contributing factor for increased inflammation, and reducing it may reduce the effects of arthritis symptoms. This is why people suffering from celiac disease are at a greater risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis. It is a known fact that celiac disease sufferers often have inflammation and joint pain as symptoms. Gluten can be found in some other harmless food items like soups, soy sauce, pasta, and couscous, etc. Be wary of gluten content in medications, vitamins, and supplements.
Omega-6 Fatty Acids and Fried items
Regardless of the kind of oil you use to cook your food, fried foods are never good for your health. They are high in trans fats and therefore, it would be best to eat broiled or grilled foods. Why? Because not only do trans fats lead to tons of life-threatening diseases but also increases inflammation. Some varieties of vegetable oils are toxic to your health. Heavy diets rich in omega-6 fats and low in omega-3 fats increase the severity of the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. This means avoid butter, coconut oil, lard, margarine, etc. as much as you can. Fried foods are dangerous as the most common oils used for frying like corn oil and vegetable oil are rich in omega-6 fatty acids. Also, frying itself as a cooking method can lead to inflammation.
This is going to be disappointing for some to digest but as healthy as they seem, that is just a marketing gimmick, they are a lot more harmful. Artificial sweeteners or aspartame seem perfect as you require a very little amount of it to get a good amount of sweetness in your teas and other beverages but since they are artificially processed, humans cannot digest it easily, this results in increased inflammation.
The Bottom Line
Arthritis, regardless of how uncomfortable the journey is, it gets better with the right choices in life. Take control of your dietary habits and a daily dose of ayurvedic supplements for joint pain, you will soon see a reduction in inflammation and its inducing symptoms.