Arthritis and its related joint pain have no actual cure; they can be treated with medicines (corticosteroid creams and pills) and with diet choices. Certain foods combat inflammation, strengthen bones, and aid the immune system.
Omega-3 fatty acids are very healthy substances, and they fight inflammation. Lean fish are rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids, especially salmon, mackerel, herring, and tuna. Three to four ounces per week is a good guide.
Plants have omega-3 fatty acids too, and they also have good fiber content—both of these fight inflammation. Soybeans—tofu or edamame—are excellent choices for reducing joint pain, and they’re also low in fat and kind to the heart.
3. Extra virgin olive oil
Certain monounsaturated oils, like virgin olive oil, are good for the cardiovascular system and for relieving inflammation. Their fats are heart friendly, and they contain other goodies—in olive oil, it’s the compound oleocanthal, which works in ways similar to anti-inflammatory drugs. Walnut, avocado, and safflower oils are also good for calming inflammation; all contain omega-3 fatty acids (as does extra virgin olive oil).
Cherries are diuretic in nature, which means they help flush out toxins; the fruit has been studied for its ability to reduce gout attacks. Beyond this, cherries contain the antioxidants called anthocyanins, which are anti-inflammatory. Other red and purple fruits—raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, blackberries–also have this helpful plant polyphenol.
Maintaining and building bone strength is important for people with arthritis—the main class of arthritis drugs, corticosteroids, leach calcium from bones. Dairy products—yogurt, cheese, milk—have calcium and vitamin D, both of which support the skeletal system, along with the immune system. Leafy green vegetables, like kale and spinach, also have calcium and vitamin D.
Loaded with vitamins K and C, this cruciferous vegetable also has sulforaphane, a compound which researchers have found may help prevent or slow the advance of osteoarthritis. And broccoli has calcium, which helps the body build bone density.
7. Green tea
Green tea is a really healthy beverage; it reduces inflammation and helps people keep their waistlines svelte. The polyphenols in green tea (a kind of antioxidant) stop inflammation and delay cartilage destruction. Another antioxidant in green tea, epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), stop the molecules that induce joint damage in people with rheumatoid arthritis.
8. Citrus fruits
Vitamin C is mostly known as an immune system aid, but it also prevents inflammatory arthritis and keeps joints healthy. Oranges, grapefruits, lemons, and limes are good sources of vitamin C.
Like whole grains, beans are a fine source of fiber, a nutrient that lowers CRP and helps digestion. Beans are an affordable and rich source of protein, which maintains muscle health, and beans also have folic acid, zinc, potassium, iron, and magnesium. All of these minerals are needed for strong heart, brain, and immune system functioning.
10. Whole grains
Finally whole grain breads and cereals are beginning to get the credit they deserve; they’re far healthier than starchy white flour products, and they taste great. C-reactive protein (CRP) is an indicator of inflammation due to diabetes, heart disease, and rheumatoid arthritis. Oatmeal, whole wheat bread, and flaxseeds are all good whole grains to eat for breakfast.