Foods for Arthritis
Foods should not be considered as a cure for arthritis, but you can use them to mitigate the symptoms and make your condition less painful. Since the medical condition is generally a disease involving joint inflammation, the most effective treatment mode is anything that can counteract the inflammation. You suppress the inflammation and you treat the chronic disease.
Thus, the main focus when it comes to effective medical management of arthritis is concerned is on the food items that possess superior anti-inflammatory properties as well as those that contain antioxidants and bioflavonoids.
This article outlines the foods that can help mitigate and suppress the symptoms.
Anti-Inflammatory Foods with Omega-3 Fatty Acids
People who are suffering from this debilitating and chronic disease should have a diet that is sufficient in Omega-3 fatty acids. These polyunsaturated fats are known for their capacity to suppress inflammation through the inhibition of the production of cytokines as well as enzymes that may affect the bone cartilage.
Among the best sources of Omega-3 fatty acids are tuna and salmon. Several studies have shown that wild salmon has levels of Omega-3 fatty acids which are 33 percent more than those found in a salmon that is farm-raised. In addition to this, a salmon that is caught in the wild has levels of fat that is 20 percent less than their farm-raised counterparts. Aside from salmon and tuna, the two other ideal sources of Omega-3 fatty acids are the walnuts and flaxseeds. Other ideal sources of this polyunsaturated fat include broiled or baked halibut, cooked soybeans, boiled and steamed shrimps, scallops and snappers, raw tofu and baked winter squash.
While we still have to achieve the appropriate preponderance of evidences that will establish claims of substantial anti-inflammatory effect of fish oil, the capacity of Omega-3 fatty acids in suppressing the symptoms and damaging effects of arthritis is supported by researches and documented success stories.
Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
Olive oil has monounsaturated fats that are known for their excellent anti-inflammatory properties. Various animal studies yielded results that indicate significant beneficial effects of diets that are high in olive oil in the control and treatment of inflammatory diseases such as arthritis.
Those who are suffering from this chronic disease are recommended to use olive oil when cooking, in lieu of butter or vegetable oil. However, you have to make sure that you don’t go overboard when using olive oil. You only have to replace them with the same amount or less of the olive oil.
Black or Green Tea
Medical experts stress the need for individuals who are suffering from arthritis to include in their diet foods and beverages that have high levels of antioxidants. This component of certain foods and beverages help combat molecules that damage tissues and cells and these include the synovium of the joints. Black and green teas are rich in antioxidants. In fact, they contain up to ten times more antioxidants compared to vegetables and fruits.
A recent study involving 1,317 men has established that those who consumed 1,500 mg of Vitamin C by taking foods and supplements that are rich in vitamin showed 45 percent lesser risk in developing gout compared to those individuals who consumed Vitamin C of less than 250 mg daily.
However, you must make sure that you don’t load up on excessive amounts of Vitamin C if you are suffering from osteoarthritis. In a separate study conducted by the Duke University medical research team, the animals that ingested high doses of vitamin C, which is equivalent to 2,500 mg of the vitamins per day in humans, for eight straight months developed severe osteoarthritis of the knee.
People with arthritis must maintain a level of consumption of Vitamin C of 200 to 500 mg per day. A cup of broccoli or an orange can supply about 200 milligrams. Of course, it is essential that you get enough dose of Vitamin C from the food that you eat and not from supplements.
Brazil nuts are rich in selenium. Three to four pieces of Brazil nuts contain about 272 micrograms, while 3 ounces of tuna contain 63 micrograms of selenium. In a 2005 study which was conducted by the University of North Carolina, results showed that participants who consumed the highest amounts of selenium has 40 percent lower risk in developing arthritis than those participants that consumed less.
Low levels of selenium have also been linked to rheumatoid arthritis. Selenium supports antioxidants in the removal of free radicals which are harmful to tissues and cells. It is also useful in the regulation of our thyroid and is believed to have potent effect against cancer-causing cells.
People with arthritis must maintain their level of consumption of selenium at 55 to 200 micrograms per day. If you are not into tuna or Brazil nuts, then you can substitute them with beef or turkey or a cup of cooked oatmeal.
Leeks and Onions
Leeks and onions are rich in quercetin, which is an important antioxidant that can mitigate the damaging effects of inflammatory chemicals, and it can easily replicate the effects of conventional medications like ibuprofen and aspirin. However, one must note that studies on its actual and long term effects are not substantive.
How to get best results?
Foods that are considered essential in the medical management of arthritis should be considered in conjunction with the established modes of treatment of the disease. While there are potential benefits of having these foods in our diet, it cannot provide absolute treatment for arthritis. Effective relief can be achieved when diet is complemented with proven arthritis solutions.