19. October 2012 20:07
Arthritis patients can greatly benefit from a healthy diet and a good lifestyle as such a way of life helps keep a tab on their weight and maintain their overall health. Research shows that there is a direct link between arthritis and one’s dietary habits. A diet that leads to unnecessary weight gain has the potential of leading to stress on certain joints, increasing joint pain, inflammation and stiffness. Some foods such as caffeine, certain dairy products, nightshade vegetables, sugar, chocolate, etc, are believed to comprise of allergens that can trigger arthritis.
Here are some nutritional guidelines that could be helpful in combating arthritis:
- Weight management: Incorporate a portion of the four basic food groups in your diet, which should include cereals, fruits, vegetables, meats, and dairy.
- Reduce fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol: Increase your intake of omega 3 fatty acids and reduce that of omega 6 fatty acids. Opt for sunflower oil, corn oil, flax seed oil, fish oil and olive oil.
- Increase the amount of carotenoid in your diet: Carotenoids are found in yellow and orange fruits and vegetables and have been shown to dramatically reduce inflammatory arthritis. Examples of such foods are carrots, sweet potatoes and squash.
- Go for foods rich in antioxidants: Foods with deeper and richer color such as red grapes, pomegranate, dark leafy vegetables, potatoes, carrots, etc, are rich in antioxidants and helpful in keeping the joints healthy.
- Increase your calcium and vitamin D intake: Go for natural foods rich in calcium such as broccoli, spinach, and mustard greens. Also, ensure you are moderately exposed to sunlight for vitamin D and include foods such as tuna, sunflower seeds, and salmon in your diet. Calcium and vitamin D are essential for protecting your bones.
The following are some foods arthritis patients should avoid in their diet:
- Refined carbohydrates
- Vegetable oils
- Carbonated soft drinks
- Yeast and wheat products
- Monosodium glutamate
- Foods containing refined sugar or synthetic sugar substitutes
In addition to following these dietary guidelines, arthritis patients should exercise regularly in order to keep themselves flexible, facilitate normal joint movement and relieve stiffness. Those who smoke should cut down on the habit as most of the chemicals in cigarettes increase inflammation and aggravate arthritis. In nutshell, those with arthritis should eat well-balanced nutritious meals and maintain their ideal body weight for best results.
For more guidelines, visit us at Lewis Orthopaedics. We are located at 2300 S. Clear Creek Rd, Suite 203 Killeen, TX 76549. You can also call us at Killeen: (254) 634-2857 and Lampasas: (512) 564-0722.