Arthritis is defined in Wikipedia as "a form of joint disorder that involves inflammation of one or more joints. There are more than 100 forms of arthritis." If you or someone you know is suffering from arthritis, especially in its most severe forms, then you understand how painful and debilitating it can be.
Some forms of arthritis, such as rheumatoid arthritis and psoriatic arthritis, seem to result from the effects of an autoimmune response. The other most common form is osteoarthritis which results from injury, trauma, infection or wear and tear of the tissues in the joints.
Some self-proclaimed dietary experts, with or without research background or adequate training, as well as many knowledgeable and reputable nutritionists concur that what we eat often does have a big effect upon our bodily symptoms, including the symptoms of arthritis. Some foods are known to increase inflammation and help to exacerbate swelling, lack of mobility and pain. However, exactly which foods to avoid and which ones to eat may be debatable.
Recently I stumbled across a site that listed 10 foods to definitely avoid if you are suffering from arthritis. Decide for yourself if your diet could be improved greatly and if you would be willing to give up these foods to eliminate some of the discomfort of arthritis, if you do have this degnerative process going on in your body.
- Boxed Cereals and Packaged Goods (Often devoid of nutrients and cause inflammation)
- High Sugar Drinks
- Diet Drinks (May cause insulin reaction)
- Carbonated Beverages (Adds phosphorus which depletes calcium from bones)
- High Sugar Electrolyte Replacement Formulas
- Dairy Products (Cause constipation and waste products in your joints)
- Rice Cakes
- Jasmine Rice
- Caffeinated Beverages (Coffee, Tea, Hot Chocolate)
- Hot Dogs
The question is: What foods are good for your body, lower inflammation and help to alleviate the causes as well as the actual arthritic symptoms? According to Ayurvedic theory, Sheila Patel, MD, Chopra Medical Center, provides a list of herbal/plant treatments known for their anti-inflammatory properties. Some may be familiar while others are strange but most can be found at your local health food store. These herbs, boswellia, turmeric, ashwagandha, ginger, triphala, guggulu, and shatavari, have been shown to interfere with the production of inflammatory chemicals in the body. Dr. Patel also cites the healing potential of regular meditation and yoga practices along with improving the quality of one’s diet.
And finally, a Mesa man who was still living at the age of 111 in April 2011, cited 5 foods that helped him keep going at this ripe old age. His 5 favorite foods that he ate every day were garlic, honey, cinnamon, chocolate and olive oil. But he also claimed to walk 1 mile every morning and eat lots of green vegetables and fruit.
Do YOU have some favorite foods that are keeping YOUR body supple and pain-free? Please share them in the comments below.