Arthritis and Diet: Which Foods You Should Avoid
Osteoarthritis, or “wear and tear” arthritis, is the most common form of arthritis. According to the CDC, it affects over 30 million adults in the US. Its signs and symptoms include joint pain, stiffness, decreased flexibility or range of motion, and/or swelling. It typically occurs in the knees, hips, and hands.
Osteoarthritis is a condition where the cartilage that sits within a joint begins to deteriorate and causes the underlying bone to change. In order to manage the condition, you should take extra care with your diet.
Here are the foods you should avoid with osteoarthritis.
Processed and Fried Foods
Processed foods such as prepackaged meals and some baked foods, contain trans fats that act as preservatives. Trans fats tend to trigger systemic inflammation. To avoid consuming trans fats, be on the lookout for food labels that say partially hydrogenated oils. Also avoid eating fried foods from restaurants because they are usually fried in trans fats.
Refined carbohydrates or refined grains include flour products such as white bread, crackers, and white pasta. Refined carbohydrates cause blood glucose levels to spike, which in turn causes inflammation. Flour products also contain gluten, so people who are sensitive to gluten may experience inflammation and joint pain.
Red meat contains high levels of saturated fats. Saturated fats increase cholesterol levels and inflammation in the body. When grilled, fried, broiled, or roasted, red meat is likely to cause inflammation due to excessive quantities of advanced glycation end products (AGEs).
Sugar and Sugar Alternatives
Refined sugar in foods such as chocolate, soda, pastries, fruit juices, and candy all cause inflammation in the body. This is because refined sugar triggers cytokines to be released in the body. Along with sugar, try your best to avoid foods that contain corn syrup, maltose, fructose, and sucrose.
Certain people have sensitivity to sugar alternatives such as sucralose and aspartame which may cause joint inflammation. They are often added to gum, diet soda, low-fat yogurt, sugar-free candy.
Omega-6 Fatty Acids
Omega-6 fatty acids are typically found in oils such as corn, safflower, sunflower, cottonseed, and soybean oils. They are also found in snacks such as crackers, cookies, and cake mix. If the levels of omega-6 fatty acids are higher than those of omega-3 fatty acids in your body, you risk inflammation.
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***Disclaimer: This blog is intended for general informational purposes only. Don’t delay seeking professional medical advice based on the information accessed on this website.