This article outlines Good Foods for Arthritis, Foods to Avoid for Arthritis, Nutritional Supplements for Arthritis and a list of Other Suggestions.
There are two main types of arthritis: osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
Rheumatoid arthritis is an inflammatory condition, where cartilage and tissues in and around the joints are damaged or destroyed. Symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis include stiffness, swelling, fatigue, anaemia, weight loss, fever and, often, crippling pain. It frequently occurs in people under forty years of age, including young children.
Osteoarthritis rarely develops before the age of forty, but it affects most people after the age of sixty. The severity of symptoms range from so mild that you don’t know you’ve got it, to so severe that the smallest movement is agony. The most common reason is wear and tear of the cartilage that covers the end of the bones.
Good Foods for Arthritis
- Eat plenty of sulphur containing foods, such as garlic and onion, and eggs. Sulphur is needed for the repair and rebuilding of bone, cartilage and connective tissue, and aids in the absorption of calcium.
- Eat plenty of green leafy vegetables, and vegetables of every colour, non-acidic fresh fruit.
- Eat antioxidant and flavonoid rich foods, like dark skinned berries.
- Eat small portions of non-gluten grains, such as spelt, kamut, millet and brown rice.
- Eat oily fish, such as wild Alaskan salmon. Also small amounts of mackerel, herring, sardine, pilchard (avoid the tomato sauce in the tins of fish). (Avoid overeating fish, as there is an issue with toxicity with most fish these days)
- Eat small amounts of nuts and seeds, especially walnuts, almonds, pumpkin seeds.
- Eat fresh (not dried or tinned) pineapple when available as the enzyme Bromelain found in pineapple will help reduce inflammation.
- Take a tablespoon of linseeds with a couple of glasses of room temperature water every day.
- Apple cider vinegar is very good for people with arthritis.
Foods to Avoid for Arthritis
- Reduce saturated fat from animals in your diet. The arachidonic acid content may exacerbate inflammation in susceptible people.
- Hydrogenated vegetable and seed oils (e.g. sunflower oil, corn oil, safflower oil, etc.) – Instead use coconut butter/oil and olive oil.
- Gluten grains such as wheat, oats, rye and barley (especially wheat) and anything made from them, like most breads, cakes, biscuits, pasta. Check labels of sauces and other prepared products for gluten and wheat ingredients.
- Milk and other dairy produce. You may be alright with goats or sheeps yoghurt. Try Almond Milk, but look for one without added sugar, or preferably make your own. Lots of easy recipes online for this.
- Excess red meat. If you wish to eat red meat, choose grass-fed varieties and eat small portions.
- Nightshade family of vegetables (peppers, aubergine or eggplant, tomatoes and white potatoes – also tobacco). The solanine found in these foods can cause pain in the muscles to susceptible people.
- Table salt (sodium chloride) but include the natural sodium found in foods such as celery – this is needed to keep calcium in solution and not sit on top of your joints. Himalayan sea salt is also good.
- Get your iron from food, but ensure your multimineral supplements does not contain extra iron (unless your Doctor tells you you’re anaemic) – there is some evidence iron may be involved in pain, swelling and joint destruction. You do need some iron though, so eat broccoli, blue green algae, spirulina and beetroot.
If the dietary supplementation suggestions above are not enough, here are some other avenues for investigation, via a nutritional therapist (www.bant.org.uk has a list of qualified therapists).
Check for food allergies and intolerances.
If you have rheumatoid arthritis, you probably have ‘leaky gut’ – a nutritional therapist will be able to help with this. NSAIDs, among other things, cause ‘leaky gut’.
Also have a hair mineral analysis via a nutritional therapist.
Check silicone breast implants.
If you are overweight, try to lose the excess.
Get tested for chlamydia organism which has been linked to some cases of arthritis.