COULD A DIET CHANGE HELP YOUR ARTHRITIS?

by Karen Heslop

Close-up of unrecognizable woman sitting in living room holding hand in pain.

Millions of Americans live with the pain and joint stiffness that comes from arthritis. To ease their discomfort, they usually need a daily regimen of painkillers as well as medical intervention such as chiropractic adjustments. Fortunately, studies have identified another potential tool in the pain-fighting arsenal – food.

The Potential Link Between Arthritis and Diet Health professionals proposed a link between the foods people eat and inflammation-based diseases because certain foods were shown to have significant anti-inflammatory properties.

Since one of the main characteristics of arthritis is inflammation, it made sense that adopting a diet that focused on these helpful foods could make a difference.

While there are different types of arthritis, osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis have been the areas of study. In osteoarthritis, the cartilage that usually protects your joints break down over time.

Technically, any joint can be affected in this way but it’s mostly found in the hands, knees, hips, or spine.

This type of arthritis is the most common and usually affects older adults. There are some cases where persons in their 20’s and 30’s have been afflicted with the disorder.

Studies have also shown that African Americans, in particular, have a higher chance of developing osteoarthritis in large joints like the spine, knees, and hips.

Rheumatoid arthritis, on the other hand, is an autoimmune disease and involves the body’s immune system attacking your joints. Over time, tendons and joints wear down and the end result can be deformed joints.

Regardless of the type of arthritis, persons with these disorders are likely to experience varying levels of pain, swelling, and joint stiffness.