Arthritis is characterized by inflammation in the joints. There can be pain, swelling, and stiffness, making it hard to move — much less do all the things you love.
At the Rheumatology and Allergy Institute of Connecticut, LLC in Manchester and Middletown, Connecticut, our goal is to help you feel better so you can be more active and enjoy your life. We treat patients with osteoarthritis, psoriatic arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, gout, ankylosing spondylitis, and much more.
In addition to treating arthritis with medication, we suggest changing your diet to see if it helps relieve your arthritis symptoms. Here are our recommendations for dietary changes that could make it easier to manage your arthritis.
Focus on anti-inflammatory foods
The Arthritis Foundation recommends a diet full of anti-inflammatory foods, like those in the Mediterranean diet, which focuses on fresh fish, vegetables, and olive oil. Try adding some of these foods into your diet:
- Salmon, anchovies, or other freshwater fish
- Spinach, kale, and broccoli
- Dark-colored fruits like blueberries, strawberries, and cherries
- Walnuts, pistachios, almonds, or pine nuts
- Black, pinto, red kidney, and garbanzo beans
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Garlic and onions
All of these foods have anti-inflammatory properties and they may help arthritis sufferers manage their symptoms naturally. Eating a healthier diet based on whole foods may also help you lose weight. This is an added benefit for all, but especially for those living with osteoarthritis because losing weight takes pressure off the joints.
Limit these inflammatory foods
Try limiting or eliminating these foods that cause inflammation to see if you notice any difference in your arthritis flare-ups or symptoms.
- High-fructose corn syrup
- Refined carbohydrates like cakes, pies, breads, cookies, candy, pretzels, and chips
- Processed foods
- Fried foods
- Sugar-filled sodas
Everyone, including arthritis sufferers, should limit these types of foods and beverages for overall health.
You may have food allergies or sensitivities that contribute to the inflammation in your body. Allergy testing can help, but you can also try eliminating certain foods for a period of time. For example, stop eating eggs, corn, soy, and dairy products for a while. Then, slowly add foods back in, one at a time, and pay careful attention to how your body reacts. If your arthritis symptoms get worse when you eat a certain food, make a note of it and limit it as much as possible in the future.
By focusing on an anti-inflammatory diet that includes whole foods, green leafy vegetables, fatty fish, and healthy oils, you may be able to ease your arthritis symptoms. Once you notice a difference, you’ll be able to regain mobility and improve your quality of life. To schedule a consultation with one of our caring and experienced arthritis specialists at the Rheumatology and Allergy Institute of Connecticut, request an appointment online or call one of our offices.