For the most part, arthritic pain is triggered by the food one eats. To help manage flareups, read on to learn about the foods to avoid with arthritis and joint pain.
What Foods to Avoid with Arthritis: 11 Foods That Cause Joint Pain
1. Sausages and Hotdogs
Sausages and hotdogs, among other processed meats, are food options you should stay away from if you’re suffering from arthritis. This is because they contain high amounts of advanced glycation end-products (AGEs).
Advanced Glycation End-Product Definition: Toxins that surface when you pasteurize, grill, or fry food
AGEs are detrimental to the body so it tries to counteract its effects with cytokines.
But cytokines can cause inflammation in the joints and muscles. The more you use them, the bigger the risk.
That’s why it’s important to lower AGE levels so the body’s cytokines aren’t forced to work.
While all meat contains AGEs, the amount found in processed foods is exponentially greater. So try to avoid them as much as you can.
2. White Rice
Refined carbohydrates such as white rice can cause blood sugar spikes. While white rice alone won’t be enough to lead to arthritis, it may worsen or aggravate its symptoms.
You can replace this side dish with fiber sources like broccoli, cauliflower, or brown rice.
3. Pre-Packaged Baked Goodies
If you’re experiencing symptoms of arthritis, then you might want to avoid pre-packaged baked treats in the meantime. These are coated in partially hydrogenated oil, a semi-solid oil that increases shelf life and reduces the need for refrigeration.
While it may be a useful oil, it’s also loaded with harmful trans fats, which can cause inflammation even in healthy people.
On top of that, trans fats have a negative effect on cholesterol levels and heart health. Treatment can become more expensive and difficult if the symptoms of these two fatal complications overlap.
Pretzels are an all-time favorite snack. But they’re also rich in refined grains which makes it one of the top foods to avoid with gouty arthritis.
Replace them with fiber-enriched options such as pistachios or chickpeas. They have the same salty, addictive flavor but not as much inflammation-causing refined carbs.
5. Ice Cream
Ice cream is one of the most popular dessert options in the world. But each bite is loaded with high amounts of sugar, dairy, and saturated fats—all of which may induce inflammation.
Firstly, saturated fats are one of the most harmful inflammation-inducing compounds found in modern foods.
Secondly, removing dairy may help ease some symptoms of arthritis.
A study was conducted on 100 arthritis patients where their daily dairy consumption was regulated. Results showed that the patients themselves noticed signs of improvement after a few weeks of not eating dairy products.
But keep in mind that the subjects here avoided all kinds of dairy, not just ice cream, and used anti-inflammatory supplements as well.
6. Margarine and Butter
Modern health buffs have been debating whether margarine or butter was healthier. However, if you have arthritis, both options are out of the question because of their high trans fat content. Avoid all kinds of foods that use either butter or margarine. Instead, opt for healthy fat sources such as coconut and palm oil.
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7. Full-Fat Cheese
Sadly, cheese is also loaded with saturated fats that may cause inflammation in the long run.
So if you have osteoarthritis flareups, you might want to avoid recipes that make use of full-fat cheese. This especially includes fried foods.
Overall, milk is a healthy drink that provides various minerals and nutrients. But this isn’t always the case. There are people who cannot digest milk, or are lactose intolerant. If they consume milk, it can lead to allergic reactions such as joint inflammation.
But keep in mind that not all dairy products cause inflammation. You can include options such as kefir or Greek yogurt to your diet even if you have arthritis.
9. French Fries
French fries are goldmines of trans fats, sodium, and grease. They are filled with nothing but unhealthy compounds that may further aggravate symptoms of arthritis.
Also, french fries aren’t just bad for those with arthritis, they’re unhealthy snacks that should be avoided by everyone. In fact, studies show that consuming french fries more than two times a week already raises your risk of death two-fold.
If you’re truly craving for some crispy french fries, opt for healthier alternatives such as carrots, sweet potatoes, or parsnips. You can bake them in the oven to achieve that crisp texture french fries have.
10. Canned Fruits
Not all fruits are good for the body. For instance, canned fruits submerged in loads of syrup should be avoided if you have arthritis.
Increased sugar levels triggered by the formulated syrup force the body to produce proinflammatory cytokines.
Pizza is loaded with grease, cheese, and white flour, all of which may lead to bodily inflammation. Grease and cheese consist of unhealthy saturated fats. These types of fatty acids stimulate fat tissue inflammation and increase one’s risk of developing heart disease.
Meanwhile, cheese is dairy. As discussed, dairy products may potentially trigger inflammation as well, so it would be best to avoid them if you’re already experiencing symptoms of arthritis. Also, white flour, which is the base of pizza, is a powerful inflammation-stimulating ingredient. Stay away from any baked product made of white flour if you want to ease inflammation.
These are just some of the foods to avoid with arthritis. Overall, you need to stay away from any kind of food that may aggravate inflammation or joint pain—this includes those high in sugar, salt, and grease.
Apart from getting rid of these inflammation-causing foods, make sure you revamp your diet with healthy options that keep arthritis at bay as well. Try adding more broccoli, fatty fish, olive oil, and ginger to your daily meals!
Of all the foods to avoid with arthritis, which ones are your favorite and what do you eat in place of them? Share your diet with us in the comments section below!
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