Rheumatoid arthritis is a form of arthritis which can affect not just the joints, but other organs like skin, lungs, heart and blood vessels as well. People who have this condition suffer from symptoms associated with arthritis such as knee joint, walking with a limp, hip pain, and other mobility issues. Diet can play an important role in alleviating some of these symptoms. In fact, many research programs have supplied excellent information on nutrition and foods that are suitable for people with rheumatoid arthritis.
Although some food items listed below need further study, they are worth trying in combination with your doctor-prescribed medications, especially because they are beneficial to your overall well-being:
Eating a diet rich in antioxidants can go a long way in reducing the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis. Antioxidants are essential to curb free radicals, which are what may cause unhealthy inflammation while damaging the tissues. An antioxidant diet rich in anti-inflammatory foods help control free radicals by contributing electrons to these high-energy particles that come from outside or inside the body. Anti-inflammatory foods are also beneficial for controlling blood pressure and promoting heart health. Foods that are rich in antioxidants include legumes, dark chocolate, Dark Chocolate, pecans, strawberries, artichokes, blueberries, raspberries, kale, and beans.
2. Calcium rich foods
Our bones act as a storage reservoir for calcium. They help maintain a healthy level of calcium in the blood and the rest of the body. Arthritis is a result of calcium loss and therefore the loss of bone density. Food items rich in calcium including healthy oils maintain balance needed for healthy bones. Calcium is also required for blood to clot and muscles to contract. More calcium is needed during pregnancy and for people who smoke in excess, drink alcohol and caffeinated products on a regular basis. Some of the best sources of calcium include milk, eggs, spinach, and soy products.
3. Omega-3 fatty acids
People with Rheumatoid arthritis are sometimes prescribed to eat food rich in omega-3 fatty acids. This component is mostly found in fish oil, fatty fish, and other seafood varieties. Research suggests that omega-3s can help a wide variety of symptoms associated with arthritis including pain and discomfort. It can also help reduce the risk of other diseases like cardiovascular and degenerative. Omega-3s are also the compounds found in many antidepressant medications due to their anti-inflammatory benefits. However, make sure to use the fish oil or fatty fish product that is not contaminated with heavy metals and other harmful substances.
4. Soluble fiber
Fiber is not just important for your gut health, but bone health as well. Soluble fiber helps remove the bulk wastes from your body, also ensuring your bones are strong enough to handle your body weight. Unfortunately, the average American gets less than half the recommended amount of daily fiber (25 grams to 38 grams). To make matters worse, people who eat fast food negate all the benefits of fiber they are getting from the food. All these can contribute to your arthritis getting worse. Foods abundant in soluble fiber include beans, berries, oats, and nuts.
5. Talk to your doctor
Many patients with RA are already prescribed RA medications such as Xeljanz, Humira, or Olumiant medicine for RA-related pain relief. However, foods may adversely affect with certain drug (i.e., Xeljanz) dosages, which is why it’s vital to get food and drug recommendations from a qualified healthcare professional.