5 Common Foods to avoid if you have Arthritis

By September 26, 2020March 18th, 2021Arthritis, Chennai Ortho

“Food is medicine” is a famous saying that we’ve heard time and again. Food can influence our weight and cause our body to heal tissues on its own. It can also trigger or reduce inflammation. 

You Should Know 5 Common Foods That’ll Reduce Arthritis Inflammation

Inflammation is usually a defence mechanism and helps the body fight harmful bacteria. It helps the body heal in most cases. 

But if the inflammation persists, it can lead to body fatigue and cause sleeplessness. This is most common with patients that suffer from Rheumatoid Arthritis. Patients with RA are faced with chronic pain from inflammation because their immune systems are overly active. 

An anti-inflammatory diet will help such patients. Science has shown that certain foods increase inflammation while other foods help soothe it. 

So, if you have arthritis, you’re better off excluding these 5 foods from your daily diet plan.

Sugar

Sugary foods are definitely irresistible especially for people with a sweet tooth. 

But did you know that foods that contain sugar can cause inflammation? 

Sugar causes fat cells in the body to release cytokines. These are immune cells that trigger inflammation in the body. 

Apart from added sugar that comes in sodas and other processed foods, also watch out for ingredients like fructose, maltose, and corn syrup. 

And if you’re thinking a daily dose of sugar from fresh fruits and juices is healthy, you’re wrong. Natural sugar is still sugar and it causes the release of cytokines which increase the inflammation. 

The healthy option is to switch to sugar-free alternatives that sate your sweet tooth and also prevent the inflammation. 

Fried Food

In most  Indian households, fried items like bajji ,samosa , potato chips, etc are made from sunflower oil. This contains Omega 6 fatty acids. 

Other oils that contain Omega 6 fats include safflower oil and canola oil. Although there is contrasting evidence regarding the effect of Omega 6 on inflammation, studies have found that maintaining a low ratio of Omega 6 and Omega 3 has proven to reduce inflammation. Omega 3 acids have also shown to reduce inflammation. 

This doesn’t mean that you’ve to completely exclude fried food from your diet because they contain Omega 6. 

You just have to consume them in moderation and increase the consumption of foods that contain Omega 3 acids. 

Foods that contain Omega 3 acids include seafood and nuts. So, make sure to include them in your diet.

Baked Goods

We all love baked goods like cakes, pie, and puffs. But these baked goods are high in trans fats and cause inflammation. 

Trans fats reduce good cholesterol in the body and increase bad cholesterol. This in turn causes inflammation. 

But you don’t have to worry about naturally occurring trans fats in foods like meat and dairy products. It’s the industrial trans fats or partially hydrogenated oils that cause this inflammation. 

So, apart from moderating the consumption of baked goods, you must also ensure that you don’t include other products with trans fats in your diet. 

Processed Meat

If your meat contains additives or if it underwent some process like smoking or curing, it’s processed. 

The most common examples of processed meat include sausages and chicken nuggets. Processed meats contain a large amount of Advanced Glycation End products (AGEs). 

These are compounds that impair the healing of tissues and cause inflammation. Studies have found that patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis tend to have large levels of AGEs. 

So, reducing the intake of foods that contain this compound will reduce inflammation. 

Reduce Arthritis Inflammation

High Sodium Food

Corticosteroids are injected directly into the joints of arthritis patients to help them get relief from the inflammation and pain. These corticosteroids make the body retain more salt than needed. 

So, when you eat food that is high in sodium, the inflammation is going to worsen. Examples of foods that are high in sodium include pre-packaged meals and frozen foods. 

In Indian households, this includes store bought gravies, chips and pickles. If you’re craving these foods, do try to make it at home instead and limit the consumption.

Conclusion

Foods that you should definitely avoid or limit with arthritis include:

      Sugar     Fried food    Baked Goods   Processed Meat   High Sodium Foods

Also, consult your dietician to make a custom diet plan for you if you have arthritis. 

We’ve conducted various events across clubs to spread awareness about arthritis. We’ve also helped countless patients live a pain-free life after undergoing surgery and getting over the fear of surgery. 

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