Because of foods that we consume daily play a significant role in making our body become sick or healthy, many people with rheumatoid arthritis eventually wonder if there is a specific diet that can help improve and relieve the symptoms of this disease such as joint stiffness, painful swollen joints, and even generalized fatigue. This article will help clarify this issue.
Although the official statement from the Arthritis Foundation indicates the specific diet for rheumatoid arthritis patients don’t exist, there has been some recent evidence that 30 to 40% of the patients may find symptoms improvement by avoiding certain foods. These foods are actually known to cause inflammation of joints. On the contrary, there are also foods that can reduce inflammation. You may want to use them.
So, what kinds of foods help arthritis pain? There is no set list of foods that can trigger or exacerbate the symptoms of this disease for every person. Some confusion lies around which fats are potentially beneficial for this disease and which may worsen inflammation.
Saturated fats may increase the amount of prostaglandins in our bodies which increase inflammation. These fats are found in meats and other animal products including cream, steak, bacon, and butter. They should be avoided.
Omega-3 fats, from nuts and certain fish, have the ability to decrease inflammation that may reduce the severity of the joint pain.
There are studies that support a variety of other foods that may reduce the risk of developing this disease, including the ones that may bring symptoms relief as well. For example, the Mediterranean diet includes a higher amount of vegetables, vitamin C, and fruits. In countries where people follow this type of diet, the disease tends to have a less severe course and symptoms are more tolerable.
How about antioxidant foods? Do they help reduce inflammation too? Yes, many specific foods that are high in antioxidants can help reduce inflammation throughout our body and decrease the chance of developing degenerative diseases as we age. They are broccoli, blueberries, pineapple, garlic, and tomatoes. Green tea is also known to have antioxidant properties. The compounds in such foods act by neutralizing free radicals which damage DNA and other cellular components.
Although there is no guarantee for everybody to get symptoms relief by doing this diet, it is a fact that this diet potentially helps some patient improve their symptoms. That is why, making dietary changes through rheumatoid arthritis diet is as important as taking a medication.