The Arthritis Diet

Over 50 million Americans have arthritis. It is the number one cause of disability in the country! Arthritis is not a single disease, but a way of referring to different kinds of joint pain [1]. Read more about how the microbiome affects this disease.


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It is plain and simple: the microbiome impacts arthritic health.

Living in a chronic state of widespread inflammation causes a “leaky gut.” This not only harms the joints, but contributes to a myriad of other health issues. Those with arthritis often suffer from secondary symptoms, like bone spurs, fatigue, insomnia, and red, patchy skin. Below, I’ve made a list of foods that will help combat this widespread inflammation, reducing joint pain and promoting a healthy microbiome.

Whole Grains

Whole grains are an essential part of the “arthritis diet.” The fiber in whole grains reduces levels of C-reactive protein, which is a marker of inflammation. Choose healthy grains like oatmeal and brown rice [2].

Citrus Fruits

Citrus fruits contain Vitamin C, which slows the progression of arthritis and has anti-inflammatory effects. Studies show that those who consume more Vitamin C have a  lower risk of developing arthritis. The best fruits to choose are oranges and lemons. Aim for 75 to 90 milligrams per day of this vitamin [3].

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Dark Leafy Greens

Dark leafy greens are an excellent source of Vitamin E, which is a potent antioxidant that has anti-inflammatory properties. Try adding some kale and spinach to your salad [4]. Broccoli is another great source of Vitamin E and it contains sulforaphane, which can actually slow the progression of arthritis [5].

Green Tea

Green tea contains several antioxidants that can help alleviate some of the symptoms of arthritis. It also contains polyphenols, which reduce inflammation [6].

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Turmeric

Turmeric is a spice that contains curcumin, which has anti-inflammatory properties. Tumeric has been used for centuries in many Indian cultures to prevent the development of inflammatory diseases [7].

Nuts

Nuts are full of antioxidants that reduce the inflammatory effects of arthritis. Almonds, which contain high amounts of vitamin E and calcium, are especially beneficial. Walnuts are another good choice as they are high in immune-boosting alpha linolenic acid [8].

Cherries

Cherries are known anti-inflammatory properties. Eating just one cup of cherries may reduce pain in people with arthritis. Pick tart cherries as those seem to be more effective [9].

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Olive Oil

Olive oil contains oleocanthal, a natural organic compound isolated from extra virgin olive oil. This compound has anti-inflammatory properties and serves as a potent antioxidant. The healthy fats found in olive oil also provide anti-inflammatory benefits that may reduce the severity of the joint pain and swelling [10].

Fish

Many types of fish have omega-3 fatty acids, which are known anti-inflammatory agents. Eating at least three ounces of fish twice a week may reduce symptoms of arthritis [11].

Garlic

Garlic

Garlic contains diallyl disulfide, which prevents enzymes from damaging cartilage. The allicin in garlic also reduces pain in people who have chronic and excessive inflammation. Opt for fresh garlic because may garlic powders contain preservatives that decrease the positive effects [12].

Although there is no cure for arthritis, certain foods have been shown to fight inflammation, strengthen bones and boost the immune system. Add these foods to your diet to help keep your arthritis pain at bay.

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