February 3, 2020 at 8:32 pm · drsahai · 0 comments
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) affects millions worldwide, and there is no cure. Inflammation is known to worsen symptoms. However, inflammation is something you can control. As a matter of fact, the right diet can reduce inflammation and ease symptoms.
The right diet also supports weight loss. Excess weight adds strain to achy joints and also increases pain. In addition to this, excess fat triggers inflammatory cytokine activity. Certain foods can reduce inflammation and fat storage to improve RA symptoms!
The Mediterranean diet is known for being one of the best for reducing inflammation. This diet consists of fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and healthy fats.
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Healthy Diet for Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)
Individuals with rheumatoid arthritis will benefit from eating foods from this healthy diet, such as:
Fish like tuna and salmon are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which reduces inflammation. Your body requires a mix of omega-3s and omega-6 fatty acids. Unhealthy diets, however, contain more omega-6s, which creates an imbalance. Chronic inflammatory diseases like RA can result from this. Although reducing omega-6s and increasing omega-3s is the best way to correct the imbalance. With less inflammation, though, rheumatoid arthritis symptoms can be reduced.
Brown rice, oats, and quinoa reduce levels of CRP (C-reactive protein). This protein is a marker for inflammation. Higher levels increase the risk of heart disease and are common among those with RA. Whole grains are high in nutrients and fiber, which refined grains are lacking. Refined grains also have added sugars and unhealthy fats. Read labels carefully to identify products with whole grains to help with your rheumatoid arthritis.
Fruits and vegetables:
Fruits and vegetables have many powerful antioxidants. These compounds neutralize free radicals that cause oxidative damage. This damage to cells triggers widespread inflammation. The plant compounds also reduce the levels of CRP, which reduces inflammation of your joints. Eat fresh fruits every day. However, watch the sugar content in frozen options! Aim for a colorful assortment of fruits and vegetables. And this will maximize nutrient variety.
Peas and beans are high in protein. Protein is essential for muscle health. RA can cause muscle loss, so protein is especially important. Peas and beans are almost entirely fat-free too. You also get antioxidants and beneficial nutrients like magnesium, iron, zinc, and folic acid. These are all great for overall health and reduced risk of heart disease.
Nuts give you healthy fats and protein and are known for being beneficial to the heart. However, they can help with rheumatoid arthritis too. The recommended nuts are almonds, pine nuts, hazelnuts, and walnuts. The high omega-3 fatty acid content benefits those with RA by reducing inflammation. Just watch how many you eat, because nuts are high in calories.
When cooking, use olive oil instead of other oils. It contains healthier monounsaturated fats as opposed to saturated fats. Additionally, olive oil contains oleocanthal. This compound reduces inflammation and pain.