Osteoarthritis diagnosis should encourage people and caregivers for easing the discomfort and pain with usual mild exercises and maintaining a healthy weight. But besides exercising, food habits play an important role in the quality of lifestyle for people diagnosed with arthritis.
What is Osteoarthritis?
Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis that generally affects the protective cartilage between elbow or knee joints leading to wearing down of joint bones. Osteoarthritis symptoms often develop slowly and worsen over time. Some common symptoms are:
- Pain:Affected joints generally pain during or post-movement.
- Rigidity & Stiffness:Joints face stiffness after waking up or after a long inactive period.
- Tenderness:Joints might feel softness when light pressure is applied.
- Swelling: Swelling with redness occurs due to tissue inflammation around the joint areas.
- Grating Sensation: Grating sensation might occur at times with a slight popping or cracking sound.
With conventional therapies just working against the symptoms, the proper way to minimize the progression rate of this disease and drive the tissue towards damage reversal is by staying active with healthy exercises, healthy diet, and opting for regenerative therapies.
How Healthy Diet Influences Osteoarthritis Treatment?
Osteoarthritis is an inflammatory condition and there are some food options that contribute to subsiding body inflammation. To name a diet that can be beneficial for Osteoarthritis, the Mediterranean diet is rich in beta carotene and fibres. The diet includes a good proportion of fruit and vegetables, whole-grain bread and pasta, beans, lentils, hummus, and olive oil, besides limiting meats and fats.
Foods to Eat
Omega-3 fatty acids: Omega-3 foods like fish and flaxseed suppresses the production of cytokines and enzymes that break down cartilage and thus prevent inflammation.
Spices: Some spices like ginger and turmeric have anti-inflammatory effects.
Good Fibers: Good fibres are a natural way to reduce inflammation with foods such as fruits, beans, vegetables, nuts, legumes, and whole grains.
Vitamins: Vitamins A, C, and K can be easily incorporated in the diet by eating dark leafy greens, such as spinach, kale, or arugula. Furthermore, red peppers, squash, citrus, sprouts, sweet potatoes, and cauliflower are great sources of vitamins.
Foods to Avoid
Fried foods: Fried foods are tasty but bad for health. These foods in excess might elicit immune responses in our body, hence giving rise to tissue inflammation.
Saturated fats: Saturated fats like cheese and red meat cause inflammation and pose a risk of heart disease. The consumption of these foods should be minimized to not more than 20 grams/day.
Processed sugars: Processed sugar foods like candies, cakes, cookies, ice creams etc. trigger the body’s immune system into flare mode that may make the joints feel weak.
Dairy: Yes dairy products should be minimized to avoid excess immune flare-ups and there are a lot of non-dairy alternatives like soy, almond, coconut, flax, and rice milk to lean on.
Alcohol: Liquor, wine, or beer might cause pain due to tissue inflammation and might interfere with the effects of osteoarthritis medications.