Arthritis hits 1 in every 5 grown ups ! Can foods cure arthritis? Unfortunately, not. But there are some foods that can make the condition less painful. On the flip side there are foods that can aggravate the condition. Knowing what these foods are and making small changes in the diet can yield BIG rewards and improve quality of life. It can also prevent the condition from progressing further. Lifestyle changes like weight loss can significantly improve the condition because every extra pound you carry especially around your belly puts about 10 lbs of pressure on your joints. I have compiled a list of Eat it and Avoid It foods ! Hope they will help you make some choices and ease the pain. If you are not yet familiar with the pains and cracks of arthritis , eating these foods can delay onset and act preventive in nature.
How it helps: Vitamin C helps in the formation of Collagen which strengthens joints.
Good sources: Sweet Peppers, citrus fruit, brocoli.
Dosage: Get about 500 mg / day. An orange or a cup of brocoli would give you about 200 mg.
Note Food sources of Vitamin C are superior to a supplement since there are other plant nutrients in these foods that can benefit arthritis.
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
How it helps: Contains olecanthal which blocks the formation of the enzymes involved in inflammation.
Dosage: Get at least a tbsp a day.
Note Extra virgin is the best as it has most amount of the anti inflammatory property.
Tip You can use it in salad dressings.
How it helps: They decrease the production of chemicals that spread inflammation and they inhibit enzymes that trigger inflammation.
Good sources: Fatty Fish like Salmon, Sardines. Other sources are walnuts, flax-seed, canola oil etc.
Dosage: Get at least 1000 mg of omega 3 / day.
Tip About a 4oz serving of fish or a handful of walnuts.
How it helps: Several studies shown the tremendous improvement in easing pain and improving joint function after eating Tart cherries. The magic ingredient here is anthocyanins , the pigment that gives cherries its rich color.
Other good sources: Other anthocyanin rich foods are eggplant, raspberries, black grapes.
Dosage: 1/2 cup of tart cherries fresh frozen or dried.
Tip 1 You could also buy tart cherry juice from a health food store. 4-8 ounces of pure cherry juice will give you amount you need.
Tip 2 Frozen tart cherries taste great in berry smoothies.
How it helps: Contain large amounts of selenium, a powerful antioxidants which seems to magically slow down the progression of the condition.
Other good sources: Oatmeal, beef, turkey are rich in Selenium
Dosage: About a handful a day.
Leeks and Onions
How it helps: Contain large amounts of quercetin , an antioxidant that inhibit inflammation and ease the pain. This antioxidant is supposed to mimic the pain killing effects of ibuprofen and aspirin.
Dosage: Try to eat 1/ 2 cup of quercetin foods / day.
Tip Use them in soups, salads, cooking etc.
How it helps: Studies show drinking green tea can lessen incidence and severity of arthritis. Green Tea has so many other benefits, so huge win for anyone who drinks it.
Dosage: 3-4 cups / day.