Malnutrition In Ra Patients
Patients with RA are often at a higher risk of malnutrition for multiple reasons. First of all, weight loss is a common symptom in RA patients. Its thought to be due to the autoimmune condition itself producing inflammatory responses which cause an increase in metabolic rate. This means that the body burns through more calories than normal, which can lead to weight loss. This is not considered healthy weight loss. This type of weight loss can potentially leave the patient undernourished or malnourished.
Secondly, many patients taking the common disease-modifying antirheumatic drug called methotrexate, have been known to have a deficiency in certain vitamins and minerals. Many RA medications produce side effects such as stomach ulcers and other digestive concerns which can make it difficult to eat. These conditions combined with weight loss further compound the problems of malnourishment in patients. Some of the most common nutrient deficiencies in RA include a lack of the following vitamins and minerals:
- Vitamin B6
A proper diet for RA that is rich in these vitamins and minerals is important for keeping patients healthy.
Finally, many RA patients are at risk of developing osteoporosis, a weakening of the bones caused by a calcium or vitamin D deficiency. RA patients should be aware of this potential risk and ensure their diet accounts for this potential deficiency.
Onions Garlic Leeks And Shallots
Allium vegetables, such as shallots, onions, leeks and garlic, are succulently pungent and brimming with quercetin, a highly beneficial and powerful antioxidant. Research reveals that quercetin is capable of eliminating the symptoms of inflammation caused by ailments such as rheumatoid arthritis.
These vegetables also contain diallyl disulphine, a naturally occurring compound that is capable of reducing the enzymes that cause severe damage to the cartilage. You can enjoy these vegetables to make delicious soups, sauces and casserole meals.
Best And Worst Foods For Arthritis In Seniors
Besides osteoarthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, and rheumatoid arthritis, many other diseases can affect the joints, including Lyme disease, lupus, Sjogren disease, etc. Despite the different types of arthritis in seniors, they all cause similar symptoms. These include joint pain, swelling, and stiffness. The intensity of the symptoms may vary from day to day, making it frustrating to live with. But in addition to exercises and other targeted treatments, you can eat to relieve symptoms and live your best life. What are the best foods for arthritis? And which are the worst?
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Grapefruit Lemon Lime And Other Citrus Fruits Are Bursting With Antioxidants Which Help Quell Inflammation
The most troubling symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis pain, stiffness, and swelling stem from the same source: inflammation. What to do? Part of the answer may involve your diet.
Findings from a study published in April 2021 in Arthritis Research & Therapy, showed that patients with rheumatoid arthritis had significantly more pro-inflammatory diets, and those individuals with RA who were able to lower diet-associated inflammation between 2011 and 2017 were also able to maintain low disease activity. That particular result was extraordinarily strong and consistent as indicated by more than 3.5 times greater odds of maintaining good control over the disease compared with those who did not adopt a more anti-inflammatory diet, said study coauthor James R. Hébert, MSPH, ScD, Health Sciences Distinguished Professor and director of the Cancer Prevention and Control Program at the University of South Carolina in Columbia.
Even more important, since the study was conducted over a number of years, it shows that the beneficial effect of a low inflammatory diet is long-term. Because such a diet can be extraordinarily diverse and sensually pleasing, it can be very easy to maintain over very long periods of time, added Hébert, via email.
Berries Apples And Pomegranates
Berries are rich in antioxidants and the Arthritis Foundation notes that blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, cranberries, raspberries and boysenberries all provide arthritis-fighting power. Youll get health benefits no matter if you eat them frozen, fresh or dehydrated , so be sure to eat a variety of berries throughout the week.
Apples are also high in antioxidants and a good source of fiber. Plus, they provide crunch and can help curb your appetite for unhealthy snacks, Dunn says.
Pomegranates, which are classified as berry fruits, are rich in tannins which can fight the inflammation of arthritis. Add these to a salad or stir into plain yogurt for some added benefits.
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Throw In Some Beets Now And Then
Beets tend to be avoided in the diet. We dont always know how to use them, and they do look a little strange. Why would you even want to add something bright purple to your diet?
Well, its time to think about using them for all the health benefits they give. Like bell peppers and tomatoes, beets have a lot of antioxidants. We already know why antioxidants are important, but thats not the only reason you need to eat more beets.
Beets have been linked to fighting against a range of diseases, including heart disease and cancer. Theyre full of fiber, which has also been linked to reducing inflammation. Around 80% of your immune system is in the gut. When you get more fiber, you give your gut the best fuel. Fiber pushes through the waste and reduces bloating and some gut diseases.
When the gut isnt in good shape, it sends off a message to the rest of your body that youre ill. The inflammation reaches your back, your arms, and all your joints. You end up suffering in areas that you wouldnt even consider are directly linked to your digestive system!
You dont need to eat beets on their own. They work well with salads, but you can also drink beet juice. They are delicious with some green vegetables.
Whole Grains May Help You Lose Weight And Lessen Pain
Much has been made of the health benefits of whole grains, and for good reason, Sandon says. Whole grains are simply grains that still have all three parts of the original grain: the bran , endosperm, and germ.
Whole grains are better sources of fiber and other important nutrients, such as selenium, potassium, and magnesium than refined grains. In addition, a diet rich in whole grains has also been linked to better weight control, which can help reduce pain and symptoms of RA.
So, switch from white bread to whole wheat, and from regular pasta to whole grain, Sandon says. Caution: When buying whole wheat bread, dont be misled by the label. It should read 100 percent whole wheat or have the Whole Grain Stamp from the Oldways Whole Grain Council. Also add other whole grains to your menu, like a bowl of oatmeal in the morning or a bulgur salad at night.
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The Myths About Nightshade Vegetables
Nightshade vegetables, such as potatoes, eggplants, tomatoes and peppers, are packed with solanine, a chemical that supposedly tends to worsen the pain-related symptoms of arthritis, along with triggering inflammation. So, should one avoid nightshade vegetables all together?
There is very little evidence to validate the above mentioned claim through scientific data. It may have proven true for some individuals, but no studies have been conducted to prove that nightshade vegetables actually worsen the symptoms or cause inflammation.
If anything, research claims that nightshade vegetables are brimming with essential nutrients, and they are a very beneficial addition to our daily diets. However, if you feel they are triggering or worsening arthritis-related symptoms and pain, avoid eating them.
Salmon Tuna Sardines And Mackerel
These fish are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which studies have found can decrease inflammation. According to the Arthritis Foundation, eating a 3 to 4 ounce serving of these fish two or more times a week is recommended for protecting the heart and reducing inflammation.
While fresh fish can get pricey quickly, one tip to make it more affordable is by looking in the freezer section or buying canned sardines, salmon or tuna. Be sure to choose lower sodium options when purchasing canned items if you need to keep your sodium in check.
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Reduce Your Sugar Intake And Up Your Exercise
Its not just about getting the right vegetables in your diet. You also need to look at the foods that are possibly causing your rheumatoid arthritis and consider other ways to help improve your health.
One of the main food groups that you want to avoid is added sugar. Unnatural sugar processes in the body differently to natural sugar, since most natural sugar includes plenty of fiber. The refined sugar goes straight to the bloodstream and sets off the insulin response. The body must combat that, and it can lead to the immune system setting off the inflammatory response. Even if you have a healthy diet in other ways, too much sugar is going to make your rheumatoid arthritis worse.
And while the diet can be beneficial, it isnt a magic cure. You will still need to improve your overall lifestyle. Adding more exercise, reducing your alcohol intake, and quitting smoking are three things that you can do. Exercise is one of the most beneficial as it helps to boost the blood flow around your system. When you have better blood flow, you reduce the amount of pain that you feel. You also improve the release of happy hormones, which include the bodys natural painkillers.
Comparative Mechanisms And Composition Underlying The Role Of Fruits In Arthritis
Comparative data on the effects of berries and other fruits in arthritis are lacking, but data in cancer cells show black raspberries and strawberry extracts to exert the most significant pro-apoptotic effects vs. blackberries, blueberries, cranberries and red raspberries. Thus, these data show that while black raspberries and strawberries differ in their polyphenol composition, each are equally potent in exerting anti-carcinogenic effects. This may be explained by the unique composition of bioactive compounds in each berry which must be further studied in context of arthritis. In another recent review on the role of polyphenols in arthritis, researchers revealed that epigallocatechin gallate, carnosol, hydroxytyrosol, curcumin, resveratrol, kaempferol and genistein were the most widely studied polyphenols in pre-clinical models, but no comparative data were provided to identify any hierarchy of biological, including antioxidant activities among these polyphenols. Overall, these emerging data show the unique make-up of dietary bioactive compounds in each fruit that may explain their anti-arthritic effects, and based on antioxidant comparisons, pomegranates score high among other habitually consumed fruits and their products.
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Vegetables That Are Proven To Help Minimize Rheumatoid Arthritis Attacks
Living with rheumatoid arthritis is debilitating and annoying. Youre in constant pain, and after a while, that pain turns into depression. You cant do everything that you once could or everything that your mind tells you that you should be able to do.
All you want is to relieve the symptoms. While you cant get rid of the condition, you want to be able to live life in the best way possible. That leads to you looking for scientific ways to relieve the inflammation, aches, and pains.
What if there was a more natural way to reduce the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis? What if you could use herbal remedies to minimize the effects so you can do a lot more on a daily basis? This isnt a dream. It really is possible. You can avoid the medications and start using natural remedies through your diet.
The great thing about this is that you dont need to make major changes to your lifestyle. You can simply add a few vegetables to your diet to start minimizing the effects of rheumatoid arthritis on your joints. Heres a look at seven vegetables that you need to add today that has been proven to help minimize rheumatoid arthritis.
How Diet Affects Ra
Although there is no demonstrable link between diet and RA, studies have shown that the type of inflammation experienced in RA could be modulated by certain foods. Increased inflammation has been attributed to processed foods or foods cooked at higher temperatures.
It is recommended to increase consumption of foods that are considered to be anti-inflammatory, such as fruits, veggies, and cold water fish . As a result, inflammatory symptoms may improve and possibly lead to fewer flare-ups.
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Add Nuts If Youre Not Allergic
Nuts are a debated food group. Some consider them as fruits and others consider them as vegetables. For the sake of this, were going to include them as a vegetable. Theyre too beneficial to overlook.
If youre not allergic to nuts, then they are certainly worth adding to your rheumatoid arthritis-struggling body. Theyre rich in vitamin E and fiber, which weve already considered. However, theyre also full of omega 3 fatty acids.
Youll usually hear of omega 3 when talking about oily fish. Sure enough, oily fish is something that you want to add to your diet regularly, but you can get too much fish. With nuts, you just need a handful a day, and you will get some super benefits.
Omega 3 fatty acids have been proven to reduce inflammation considerably. They work extremely well within the brain, helping to take some of the pressure off the pain receptors. Your body doesnt get the same type of pain messages that they have in the past. Its possible to reduce the inflammation within 6 weeks by adding nuts in regularly.
Green Tea: A Nice Cuppa May Sooth Your Joints
Green tea has an abundance of catechins that interrupt the expression of inflammation. Its effect on rheumatoid arthritis has been long studied one such study, published in August 2017 in Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology, reported that the consumption of green tea offers an overall anti-inflammatory effect. However, most studies have been on small samples. A newer study, published in the March 20, 2020, issue of Annals of Nutrition and Metabolism looked at a real-world, large scale study. Result: A higher intake of green tea was associated with lesser disease activity.
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Citrus Fruits’ Vitamin C Is An Important Ingredient In Tissue Repair
Citrus foods, such as oranges, grapefruit, lemon, and limes, are rich in vitamin C. This dietary component is necessary for the synthesis of collagen, which helps build and repair blood vessels, tendons, ligaments, and bone, and is therefore helpful for people with osteoarthritis, Sandon says.
Citrus fruits are also good sources of inflammation-fighting antioxidants, which are helpful for those with rheumatoid arthritis.
So start your day with a glass of orange juice, have half a grapefruit for a snack, and squeeze lime or lemon juice on foods when you’re cooking to take advantage of the healing power of citrus. Aim for a total vitamin C intake of 75 milligrams per day for adult women, and 90 mg per day for adult men, the current U.S. recommended dietary allowance. If you are pregnant, aim for 85 mg and if you are lactating, 120 mg.
Do Any Foods Make Arthritis Worse
Some people feel that certain foods are bad for arthritis and that cutting them out helps with their symptoms. Some of the foods people worry about include:
- citrus fruits, such as oranges, lemons and grapefruit
- vegetables from the nightshade family including potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, chillies and aubergines
- gluten, a protein found in pasta, bread and cereals.
Theres no evidence that diets where certain foods are cut out, also known as exclusion or elimination diets, are helpful for people with osteoarthritis. They have been shown to sometimes help people with rheumatoid arthritis, though the food that may cause symptoms is likely to be different for each person.
This could be for a number of reasons, including the person being allergic or intolerant to the food they cut out, rather than being directly related to the arthritis. If healthy foods are not affecting your symptoms, you dont need to cut them out of your diet.
If you want to try cutting certain foods out of your diet to see if it improves your symptoms, the important thing to remember is to speak to a doctor or dietitian first. Theyll be able to support you and make sure youre trying out the change to your diet safely. Some foods are present in things we dont realise, so they can also help make sure you really are cutting out everything you plan to.
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Pineapple: This Fruit’s Enzymes Can Decrease Swelling
Pineapple is rich in vitamin C and the enzyme bromelain, which has been linked to decreased pain and swelling in both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, Sandon says. So, add this tropical fruit to your diet every chance you get. Try it cubed in fruit salad, baked in savory dishes, blended into a smoothie, or added to stir-fries to give a sweet-and-sour zing.
Bromelain is also available in supplement form, but check with your doctor before taking it because it can increase the risk of bleeding, especially if you also take blood thinners such as Plavix , Coumadin, or aspirin. Bromelain may also interfere with the action of antibiotics and sedatives.
Best Spices For Arthritis
Season your food with anti-inflammatory spices
Often when prepping a meal, food is the primary focus and spices are, at best, an afterthought. But when following an anti-inflammatory diet to help reduce the pain and joint inflammation of arthritis, researchers say dont forget about the potential benefits of the spices you use to season your meals.
The more anti-inflammatory foods and spices you eat, the more you are tamping down chronic inflammation, explains board certified sports dietitian Kim Larson, a national spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics. I think people are often surprised at what a great anti-inflammatory source spices can be.
When you have arthritis, your joints and sometimes other parts of your body become inflamed, and many spices inhibit certain inflammatory pathways in the body. And although a dash of cinnamon on your oatmeal is somewhat infinitesimal, spices can pack a significant punch when you consume a number of them throughout the day.
If you do a sprinkle of cinnamon in oatmeal or a smoothie, then have some ginger tea mid-morning and something with pepper and garlic for lunch and dinner it can certainly have an additive effect, explains Beth McDonald, a nutritionist at The Center for Health and Healing in the Department of Integrative Medicine at Mount Sinai Beth Israel Hospital in New York City. So with spices experiment with new recipes and try to incorporate a spice with an anti -inflammatory benefit with every meal.
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