Nutritional Composition Of Chocolate
Cocoa powder, which is used to make chocolate, is an abundant source of phytochemicals, which are plant chemicals that enhance health in a variety of ways. Dark chocolate contains a higher amount of phytochemicals than milk or white chocolate do. Phytochemical content also depends upon the type and percentage of cocoa powder used when making chocolate.
In The Kitchen With Arthritis: Foods To Avoid
The goal of an anti-inflammatory diet for arthritis is to reduce inflammation and the joint degeneration and pain it causes.What Are Anti-Inflammatory Foods?
You can influence inflammation by eating anti-inflammatory foods, such as leafy greens and colorful vegetables, and avoiding these 7 inflammatory foods:
Sodas And Bone Health
Beyond aspartame, concerns about adverse effects of soda on bone health have also been raised. One concern is that its phosphorus content could have a negative effect on calcium metabolism. According to the International Osteoporosis Foundation, evidence doesn’t uphold this theory, but the caffeine content may decrease the amount of calcium that’s stored in your body.
The participants, nearly 74,000 postmenopausal women who were tracked for up to 30 years, identified how much and what kind of soda they drank on a regular basis . Results showed that, among both regular and diet soda drinkers, their risk for hip fracture increased as their soda consumption increased.
Although the exact reasoning behind why soda affects bone density is unknown, the Cleveland Clinic notes that drinking more soda drink might correlate to a lower consumption of calcium-rich beverages, such as milk.
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Or Scan The Ingredients List
Ingredients in a given food are listed by weight if theres sugar in the top three, says Dubost, you know the product contains a lot. There are at least 61 different names for sugar listed on food labels. Some common ones include sucrose and high-fructose corn syrup, as well as cane sugar, dextrose, invert sugar, maltose, and rice syrup, among others. Honey and molasses may be more natural, but they still count as added sugar, says Dubost.
Does Sugar Cause Inflammation
Arthritis patients should be cautious when consuming sugar because studies have shown that sugar consumption increases inflammation in humans. Many foods and beverages have hidden sources of sugar, so it is important to read the labels and ingredients of the foods and drinks that you eat. For example, studies have shown that beverages such as sugar-sweetened soda is associated with an increased risk of chronic inflammatory diseases.
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How Sugar May Affect Ra
A 2017 survey of people with RA found that the foods most often linked to worse symptoms were sugary ones, specifically desserts and sodas. One reason may simply be that people who cut out added sugar end up losing weight, which can improve RA symptoms, explains survey co-author Sara Tedeschi, MD, MPH, assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School. âItâs hard to separate the effect of dietary change from the effect of weight loss.â
The tie between sugar and RA is nothing new. Many people assume that the autoimmune disorder started happening only recently. But it was first seen by Western doctors in the late 19th century, when sugar became more widely available to the public. âAt the same time as we started seeing tooth decay and gum disease, we started seeing RA,â explains Avram Goldberg, MD, clinical director of NYU Langone Rheumatology Associates in Lake Success, NY. âWe think that the sugar caused a change in bacteria in the mouth, which in turn made some people more susceptible to the condition.â
Also, many people with RA have proteins in their body called anti-citrullinated protein antibodies , Hsiao explains. These cause the inflammation that triggers the disease. Experts think sugar triggers your body to make more ACPA, she says, which can make your symptoms worse.
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Natural Sugars Vs Added Sugars
Naturally occurring sugars are found naturally in foods such as fruit and milk . Added sugars include any sugars or caloric sweeteners that are added to foods or beverages during processing or preparation. Added sugars can include natural sugars such as white sugar, brown sugar and honey as well as other caloric sweeteners that are chemically manufactured .
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Sugar Inflammation And Achy Knees
Having a whole lotta sugar takes its toll on the body. It has been linked with weight gain, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, dental caries, liver disease, accelerated ageing, and the list goes on!
But could too much of the sweet stuff be contributing to our bodys creaks and pains?
Joint pain and inflammation
Inflammation is a term we hear a lot with respect to health. We are told that anti-inflammatory foods are great for us, and things that cause inflammation tend to cause trouble.
This is true to an extent.
An inflammatory response is a normal part of the human defence system. The swelling, redness, pain and heat experienced when we cut our thumb is a reflection of the influx of chemical warriors coming to save the day, kick starting the healing process. We need inflammation to heal wounds, clear debris, and fight pathogens, to stand strong in the face of adversity!
But when inflammation is present long-term, all those warriors, such as cytokines, can get a little carried away, and begin to damage parts of our body that are otherwise quite healthy.
Including our joints, which can present as arthritis.
Oh my achy knees!
Common forms of arthritis include gout, ankylosing spondylitis, rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis , with fibromyalgia a related condition.
Inflammation aint only about diet but its a big factor
It seems when it comes to the swelling and aches in the joints, pro-inflammatory and processed foods have a lot to answer for.
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Best Healthy Snacks For Arthritis: The Journey Is The Reward
Snacking isnt going to be your only tool against arthritis. We suggest our GLX3 New Zealand Green Lipped Mussel Oil supplement as part of your routine, along with a healthy, antioxidant-rich diet and appropriate exercise. If youre done with snacking and ready to make dinner, here are 6 super easy meal ideas for people arthritis.
These elements come together into a sort of full-circle arthritis fighting routine. Exercise is critically important for whole body health and wellness, but as youve probably learned, many exercises take their toll on your joints. By eating a healthy diet, you can do everything in your power to offset the inflammation and joint pain and get back to doing the things you love most whether that be playing with the kids or going on a morning walk.
Celiac Disease And Inflammation
Celiac disease is another type of autoimmune disorder. When youre living with celiac disease and you eat foods that contain gluten , the proteins trigger an immune response.
This causes inflammation in the small intestine, affecting its ability to absorb nutrients. This inflammation typically manifests into symptoms like diarrhea, abdominal pain, and bloating.
Since gluten can leak into your bloodstream, individuals living with celiac disease may have pain and inflammation in other areas of their bodies, like their joints. Severe, untreated cases of celiac can also cause:
In the same way that inflammatory arthritis can lead to the development of other inflammatory disorders, if you have celiac disease, youre at risk for developing another autoimmune disorder. In fact, the older you are when youre diagnosed, the more likely you are to develop another disorder.
According to the Celiac Disease Foundation, if a child is living with celiac, theres a 1.5 to 6.6 percent chance of them also developing juvenile arthritis. RA and thyroid disease, two other autoimmune disorders, are also linked to celiac.
Additionally, celiac disease can sometimes be misdiagnosed as arthritis, especially if the only symptom is joint pain.
While theres a clear connection between celiac disease inflammation and gluten, could there also be a connection between inflammatory arthritis and gluten?
At the moment, researchers arent entirely sure. While
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Sugar And Certain Sugar Alternatives
Foods that contain refined sugarincluding pastries, chocolate, candy, soda, and even fruit juicestrigger the release of proteins in the body called cytokines, which cause inflammation. Sugar is labeled many ways in food items in addition to sugar, watch out for corn syrup, fructose, sucrose, or maltose in ingredient lists.
Cutting back on regular sugar may lead people to seek out foods made with sugar alternatives, such as aspartame and sucralose, when a sweet tooth hits. However, some people are sensitive to these substances, which can cause an inflammatory response from the body. Sugar alternatives are often found in diet sodas, gum, sugar-free candy, and low-fat yogurt and pudding.
List Of Products That Contain Added Sugar And Must Be Avoided
Sugar is added in increasing amounts in food and drinks to improve taste and increase its consumption.
Although, the amount of sugar added in these food items may be exceeding the amounts that it is naturally present in any items.
Increased intake of sugar with food is responsible for its negative effects on health. Sometimes it may creep up in your diet without you noticing. Foods generally need not be sweet in nature to contain added sugars.
Following is the list of food items that contain added sugars. These are the food items that are to be shunned from your diet.
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Overdoing It On Added Sugar Can Contribute To Inflammation Heres How To Eat Less Sugar Without Quitting Cold Turkey
Heres the thing: Sugar itself isnt inherently bad. It gives you energy and occurs naturally in many healthy foods, like fruits, veggies, and dairy, says Jen Bruning, MS, RD, registered dietitian nutritionist and spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics.
The problem is when you overdo it on *added* sugar the kind found in processed foods and drinks. Consistently consuming too much can contribute to obesity, heart disease, and type 2 diabetes mess with your mood and even give you more wrinkles. Plus, eating too much added sugar may exacerbate inflammation which is particularly important when you have rheumatoid arthritis or other forms of inflammatory arthritis.
Inflammatory Arthritis And Type 2 Diabetes
Experts dont know for sure how inflammatory arthritis such as RA and PsA are connected with diabetes, but research suggests certain factors may drive an association, including:
Inflammation: Both rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, and type 2 diabetes are characterized by inflammation, says Jessica Starr, MD, an endocrinologist at Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City. There are studies that have shown that having RA increases your risk for developing type 2 diabetes and having type 2 diabetes increases your risk for developing RA, says Dr. Starr. A common mediator for this may be inflammation, but the data isnt completely clear.
What researchers do know is that having more inflammation such as that occurs in rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, and other kinds of inflammatory arthritis promotes insulin resistance, and could promote type 2 diabetes, says John Davis, III, MD, a clinical rheumatologist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. Some of the same inflammatory markers that are high in people with inflammatory arthritis are also seen in people with diabetes.
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Added Sugar Can Increase Oxidative Stress In The Body
Sugar consumption is known to lead to a variety of diseases that are caused by affecting the normal oxidation-reduction balance in the body.
The derailment of this balance creates oxidative stress within the body. Antioxidants are substances that are essential to maintaining the redox balance.
In similar manner arthritis is also one such condition the redox balance is important and arthritis patients are known to have a lesser level of antioxidants.
Sugar is nothing but glucose, which when metabolized generates reactive oxygen species .
Sugar metabolism in the body created AGEs which bring about the oxidative stress in the body.
Scientific data proves that sugar meals increase the antioxidant requirement in the body, failing which oxidative stress is inevitable.
What does this mean?Arthritis patients are already a victim of higher oxidative stress within the body. The consumption of added sugar can further worsen this stress leading to cellular damage.
Sugar And Refined Flour
Your blood sugar levels can surge after you’ve eaten simple carbohydrates that are easily broken down by the body. Such foods include sugary snacks and drinks, white-flour bread and pasta, and white rice. A spike in your blood sugar prompts the body to produce pro-inflammatory chemicals called cytokines, which can worsen your RA symptoms if the inflammation affects your joints. These foods can also cause you to put on the pounds, stressing your joints. There is no real replacement for these foods, but you can try gluten-free alternatives, which can be helpful, says Domingues.
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Sugar Inflammation And Joint Pain
Most of us consume far more sugar than we really should. Beyond weight gain, you might be feeling sugars effects without realizing it’s the culprit. Fatigue, stress, irritability, mood swings, difficulty sleeping and joint pain can all be attributed to sugar. Even if you avoid candy, pie, soda, alcohol and ice cream, sugars are hidden in many of the foods and drinks we consume on a daily basis. Crackers, yogurt, ketchup, and peanut butter, to name a few, are loaded with sugar, often in the form of high-fructose corn syrup. And, don’t forget that simple carbohydrates like pasta, potatoes and white rice quickly convert into sugar in your body.
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture , Americans consume between 100 – 180 pounds of sugar each year. Only about 29 pounds is directly from the sugar bowl while the rest comes from foods and drinks. The types of sugars are refined white sugar, brown sugar, raw sugar, high fructose corn syrup, malt syrup, sucrose, fructose, dextrose, molasses, fruit juice concentrate, honey and simple carbohydrates. Every time you consume as little as two teaspoons of sugar, you upset your body chemistry and disrupt homeostasis, the wonderful balance in the body needed for maintenance, repair and life itself.
Joint Pain and InflammationDietary Changes to Reduce Inflammation and Joint PainTopical Inflammation and Pain Relief
Tips To Reduce Sugar Intake
The previously mentioned studies show not just that sugar is harmful, but that the type of diet that tends to include lots of sugar one high in processed, fatty foods can also worsen arthritis symptoms.
People with arthritis should focus on reducing sugar while adding nutritious foods to their diet. They can try adding foods like:
- fruits and vegetables
- legumes, nuts, and seeds
- unsweetened beverages, especially water
Making dietary changes is hard, so it is important to go slowly and focus on making consistent, positive changes. Some people may find it useful to replace existing foods with more nutritious alternatives. They can try:
- replacing desserts with sweet fruits like mangos or watermelon
- reading ingredient labels and paying close attention to added sugar
- eliminating sweetened beverages
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How Added Sugar May Worsen Arthritis Symptoms
Consuming too much processed sugar causes the body to release pro-inflammatory proteins called cytokines, says Bruning. Cytokine levels are already high when you have inflammatory arthritis that chronic inflammation is what causes pain, swelling, and stiffness in your joints.
Overindulging in high-sugar foods also stokes your appetite and can cause weight gain. Added sugar contributes calories with no nutritional value, explains Joy Dubost PhD, RDN, registered dietitian nutritionist and food scientist in the New York City area. When youre overweight or obese, that fatty tissue produces hormones that can put you into more of an inflammatory state.
In fact, a review of research found obesity can lead to more active and severe rheumatoid and psoriatic arthritis. Extra weight also puts more pressure and stress on the joints, which can worsen the pain and stiffness associated with inflammatory arthritis, say experts.
Another effect of too much sugar in your diet: too many harmful compounds called AGEs form in the blood, which also contribute to chronic inflammation.