Diet in Rheumatoid Arthritis 31 Mar, 2020

Diet in Rheumatoid Arthritis

 What Is Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis can be defined as a chronic inflammatory disorder affecting many joints including those in the hands and feet. Generally, the body's immune system attacks its own tissue, including joints in Rheumatoid Arthritis and in severe cases, it attacks internal organs also.

If it is examined in the initial stages, it can be controlled with the help of medicines.  It is a common disease that affects women more, and the symptoms are pain and stiffness in the joints of hands and feet become swollen. Whenever a patient gets Rheumatoid Arthritis or any other arthritis, the first question that comes to his mind is why did I get sick or were I having faulty dietary habits and what should I eat now, so that the problem becomes under control. Usually, the patient makes changes in food and drink on the advice of friends, relatives, family, and neighbours before meeting the doctor.

Symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis

While Rheumatoid Arthritis symptoms can affect several organs in the body, although each person with Rheumatoid Arthritis affects differently. The joint symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis include:

1.            joint pain

2.            joint swelling

3.            joint stiffness

4.            loss of joint function and deformities

Symptoms can vary from mild to severe. It’s important not to ignore your symptoms, even if they come and go. Knowing the early signs of Rheumatoid Arthritis will help you and your healthcare provider better treat and manage it.

Myths: Rheumatoid Arthritis and Food

There are many myths related to food and diet in Rheumatoid Arthritis as Apple cider vinegar cuts joint pain, people often suggest you to stay away from citrus fruits and vegetables. Also, milk and dairy products worsen the Rheumatoid Arthritis condition. Do not eat potato or brinjal, do not eat any other whole grains other than lentils, do not drink milk, do not eat cold things like curd, do not eat mutton and spicy food, etc. Unfortunately, all these things are just myths and there is no fact or scientific reason behind them.

Facts: Rheumatoid Arthritis and Food

A patient with arthritis should include such things as food that can help reduce illness. Although there is no as such Rheumatoid Arthritis diet but there are certain foods that can definitely lower inflammation in your body. The correct food may not relieve you from the disease, but you can definitely get relief by reducing its symptoms.  First of all, you should include such things in your diet, which will keep you healthy. A balanced diet full of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains is the best diet for the patient of Rheumatoid Arthritis. Olive oil, fish and fiber-rich diet may help you feel better overall. It has been proved in many types of research that with the help of fresh coloured vegetables you can not only avoid arthritis, also keep it under control.

Eat these things to stay healthy even with Rheumatoid Arthritis:

Fruits and vegetables: It protects from free radicals and cell damage with antioxidant properties. You should eat more and more vegetables like a gourd, bitter gourd, spinach, broccoli, and drumstick. Fruits like watermelon, cucumber, grapes, berries, and oranges fight inflammation and relieve joint pain. All these fruits and vegetables are also high in bone preserving calcium.

Whole grains: Whole grains like wheat, brown rice, and whole wheat bread reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases which is more linked in arthritis patients.  As whole grains lowers the levels of CRP (C reactive protein) in the blood.  Sources of whole grains like oatmeal, broken wheat, oats are rich in fiber and lowers inflammation because of their anti-inflammatory properties.

Nuts and dry fruits: Dry fruits like almonds, walnuts, pistachios, and peanuts are rich in protein, calcium, magnesium, zinc, vitamin E and anti-oxidants. Flax seeds and chia seeds also help to relieve arthritis symptoms.  As nuts have very high-calorie content, so do not consume them excessively.

Warm water : Drinking hot water regularly in arthritis not only makes one feel light in joints.  Rather, they also increase flexibility.  It also gives pain relief to a great extent by stimulating blood flow to stiff muscles and frozen joints as warm tub is an ideal place for some gentle stretching.

Beneficial spices : Spices like ginger, coriander, garlic and turmeric not only enhance the taste of your food rather, along with improving digestion, they also act as excellent pain relievers. It has been seen that the patients who consumed double the amount of garlic, coriander, and ginger in comparison to the rest of the patients, their arthritis was more in control than the rest. These spices help in increasing the effect of medicines.

Bottom line is to maintain a healthy and well-balanced diet which includes plenty of omega 3 fatty acids, lean proteins, colourful fruits, vegetables, salads, and whole-grain cereals. Include all the foods that have anti-inflammatory properties which lower inflammation and relieve symptoms in Rheumatoid Arthritis.