Arthritis is one of the most devastating diseases, which causes pain, inflammation, and stiffness in the joints. There are different types of arthritis, but the most common ones are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
Osteoarthritis happens when the cartilage between bones wears out, while rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune condition that causes the immune system to attack the joints. Arthritis affects people of all ages and genders but gets worse in old age.
While no foods can completely cure the disease, some anti-inflammatory foods help reduce and manage the symptoms. They include;
Oily fish have high amounts of Omega-3 fatty acids that have high anti-inflammatory properties. They also have high levels of Vitamin D, which also help reduce symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, which worsen due to vitamin D deficiency.
Arthritis patients should have at least one portion of fatty fish weekly. Some of the fatty fish include;
• Fresh tuna.
Garlic has anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce symptoms of arthritis. Studies have also shown that it has diallyl disulfide, a compound that destroys the enzymes in the body damaging the cartilage between bones.
It also boosts the function of some immune cells, which helps in strengthening the immune system.
Apart from adding flavor to tea, food, and soups, garlic is an important food that helps reduce the symptoms of arthritis. Studies found that ginger has components that block the production of certain substances that increase inflammation.
Other studies also established that it helps decrease the levels of inflammatory markers associated with arthritis.
Patients can consume ginger in several ways;
• Adding powdered ginger to the baking floor.
• Making ginger-infused tea using ginger tea bags or a ginger root.
• Grating fresh ginger into a stir fry salad.
• Adding fresh ginger into a smoothie or fruit juice.
• Adding fresh or powdered ginger into meals.
Before taking ginger, arthritis patients should consult the doctor because it may interfere with certain medications.
Broccoli is among the healthiest foods in the world. Besides its high anti-inflammatory properties, broccoli has a lot of benefits that help reduce arthritis symptoms.
Sulforaphane, for example, is a broccoli compound that inhibits the production of a cell type involved in the development of rheumatoid arthritis.
It also helps minimize the production of some inflammatory markers, which contribute to the development of the disease and help reduce the progression of osteoarthritis.
Broccoli is also rich in vitamins C and K and calcium, which helps develop stronger and healthier bones.
These are other types of food packed with tones of nutrients and vitamins. Leafy green vegetables have a lot of anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce arthritis symptoms. They also have high levels of vitamin D and stress-fighting antioxidants and phytochemicals.
Vitamin D helps in the absorption of calcium, which helps in the development of strong, healthy bones. It also helps boost the immune system, enabling the body to fight off infections.
Spinach is one of the leafy green vegetables that have a lot of antioxidants and plant compounds that help relieve inflammation and fight diseases.
One of those antioxidants found in spinach in high levels is kaempferol, which reduces the effects of certain inflammatory agents linked with rheumatoid arthritis. It also helps inhibit the spread of osteoarthritis.
Some other leafy green vegetables include;
• Collard greens.
Berries are hard to resist, especially because of their sweetness and juiciness. However, apart from that, they are packed with health benefits that help manage the symptoms of different types of arthritis.
They have lots of vitamins, antioxidants, and minerals, which help reduce the inflammation caused by the disease. They help reduce the levels of inflammatory markers in the blood.
Berries have a lot of rutin and quercetin, two plant compounds that block various inflammatory processes linked to arthritis.
The different types of berries patients can choose from are;
• Acai berries.
Grapes have a variety of nutrients, antioxidants and also have anti-inflammatory properties. Resveratrol is one of the antioxidants found in grapes' skin. It helps prevent the formation of rheumatoid arthritis cells, which reduces the thickening of joints associated with the disease.
Proanthocyanidin is also another compound found in grapes seeds, and it helps reduce inflammation associated with different types of arthritis.
This is a popular beverage taken by many people worldwide. One of its known benefits is helping in weight loss. However, it has a lot of other health benefits, one of them being reducing the symptoms of arthritis.
It has numerous antioxidants that help reduce inflammation caused by both rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.
Olive oil is popular for its anti-inflammatory properties, which are important in helping reduce and manage the symptoms of arthritis. It helps reduce the levels of certain inflammatory markers in the body.
Arthritis patients can incorporate olive oil in their food by;
• Using it to fry and roast various foods like meat.
• Using it as a butter substitute.
• Using it as a salad dressing.
• Using it as a topper in different foods like pizza, mashed potatoes, seafood, and vegetables.
Nuts are not only delicious but have numerous health benefits that help in the management of arthritis symptoms. They have high levels of calcium, which promotes the development of stronger and healthier bones.
They are also packed with zinc, magnesium, fiber, and Vitamin E. Nuts also contain alpha-linolenic acid, which helps boost the immune system and fight off infections.
Walnuts are some of the best nuts that are rich in anti-inflammatory properties. They help minimize inflammation markers in the body associated with arthritis. They are also packed with Omega-3 fatty acids, which help reduce certain arthritis symptoms.
• Other nuts include;
• Cashew nuts.
• Cashew nuts.
Seeds are also another rich source of Omega-3 fatty acids, which help reduce inflammation caused by arthritis.
Some of the seeds include;
• Flax seeds.
• Chia seeds.
• Sunflower seeds.
• Pumpkin seeds.
Before adding some of these foods to their diets, arthritis patients should consult with their doctors because they may have a negative effect on some medications, like blood-thinning medicines.
They should also ensure that foods, especially vegetables and fruits, are clean and have no chemicals in them. While eating these foods helps manage arthritis symptoms, patients should not take them as a substitute for their medications.