Arthritis is a disease that is often characterized by the pain and inflammation that comes along with it. Many people living with arthritis often feel powerless to the aches they feel and think there is nothing they can do to fight it. Luckily, there are many ways to reduce arthritis inflammation, beginning with food.
Maintaining a well-balanced diet is key in leading a healthy life. Likewise, eating healthier foods also can have a positive impact on your arthritis. Here are a few foods that can help you reduce discomfort caused by inflammation.
The omega-3 fatty acids found in salmon, tuna, mackerel and herring are great for fighting inflammation due to rheumatoid arthritis. Omega-3s are not only helpful for reducing inflammation and relieving arthritis, but they also can prevent you from getting any other diseases characterized by inflammation. Adding three to four ounces of fish to your diet at least twice a week is a great way to reduce your arthritis pain and inflammation. Other foods that are rich in healthy omega-3 fats include flax seeds and walnuts.
2. Olive Oil
Like fish, olive oil also is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which gives it anti-inflammatory properties. Olive oil contains a natural chemical that halts the production of the chemicals that produce inflammation in the body. Incorporating more olive oil into your diet can help you to reduce the pain and stiffness associated with arthritis.
Extra virgin olive oil is a great option, since it retains many nutrients and has numerous health benefits. Next time you eat a salad, switch out the ranch dressing for a homemade mixture of olive oil and vinegar. This will ensure that you’re reaping all the benefits of olive oil while maintaining a healthy diet.
Nuts are a healthy fat that can be extremely helpful in fighting inflammation. While all nuts contain antioxidants that allow the body to fight off inflammation, walnuts in particular contain high amounts of omega-3. Incorporate more nuts into your diet by adding different kinds to your cereal, salad or desserts.
Besides being rich in calcium, magnesium, vitamin C and iron, dark, leafy greens such as spinach, kale, parsley and broccoli are a great source of vitamin E. One thing vitamin E does extremely well is protect the body against inflammation. These vegetables also are rich in antioxidants, which can reduce the amount of damage caused by arthritis. They also significantly reduce inflammation. Make sure you don’t skip your veggies at dinner time and have at least five servings a day!
Fruits contain a variety of nutrients, antioxidants, fibers, vitamins and minerals that serve to reduce inflammation. Try to add more fruits to your diet by eating five or more servings of fresh fruit per day. Eating fresh fruits rather than frozen fruits ensures a better taste, as well as a higher concentration of nutrients and other beneficial qualities. Some fruits that are especially helpful for those with arthritis include tart cherries, strawberries, raspberries, watermelons and grapes.
Arthritis Specialists in Illinois
Just because you are living with arthritis doesn’t mean you have to live with the pain that is associated with it. Here at Illinois Bone & Joint Institute, our arthritis, osteoarthritis and osteoporosis specialists will work one-on-one with you and provide you with the best care possible. Our team of dedicated physicians works tirelessly to ensure your comfort and satisfaction every step of the way. Contact us to schedule an appointment today!