Arthritis is one of the most common afflictions of people in the U.S. Encompassing more than 100 joint diseases and conditions, arthritis is a catchall term for stiffness, pain, swelling and inflammation of the joints. Based on a 2016 study conducted by the CDC, approximately 23 percent of adults (54 million people) suffer from the condition. Consequently, there have been countless studies conducted to explore ways of alleviating arthritis symptoms. While everyone should consult a licensed healthcare professional regarding their arthritis, there are some easy diet changes that may reduce inflammation and help to ease the pain. Here are five foods proven to reduce inflammation associated with arthritis.
Fish like salmon and cod are widely known for their nutritional properties. Most of the benefits come from the presence of healthful fats, or omega-3s , that protect the body from inflammation. Consequently, a fish-rich diet of three to four servings per week could positively influence those with arthritic tendencies.
Adding ginger and garlic to healthy meals could also be a good way to reduce inflammation. In studies, the presence of the compound diallyl disulphin in garlic has blocked enzymes linked to cartilage deterioration in cells. Ginger, too, has been shown to decrease inflammation-causing substances in the body. Additionally, a 2001 study surveyed osteoarthritis patients taking ginger extract. After a six-week trial period, 63 percent of them reported improvement in symptoms. So ginger and garlic not only adds more flavor to your food but may also help relieve pain from inflammation.
Broccoli is loaded with health benefits, one of which includes reducing inflammation. While many other cruciferous vegetables can boast this claim, the presence of a substance called sulforaphane in broccoli adds an extra perk. Sulforaphane does this by blocking the formation of a type of cell that proliferates rheumatoid arthritis development.
While many red and purple fruits are packed with anthocyanins that can promote inflammation reduction, tart cherries are particularly packed with anti-inflammation properties. This is one of the many reasons why tart cherries are great for combatting symptoms of gout. You can reap the benefits of tart cherries from the fruit themselves or by drinking tart cherry juice. The juice, however, could contain some undesired sugars, so make sure to check the label and opt for a sugar-free version.
Leafy greens are good for you in general. Vegetables like spinach, kale, and some types of lettuce are packed with vitamins and minerals. The presence of vitamin D, specifically, aids in calcium absorption, so it’s great for those with arthritic symptoms who wish to strengthen their bones and joints. Moreover, if you have a dairy intolerance, leafy greens could be the solution to your calcium needs. Additionally, vitamin D boosts the immune system, providing yet another way leafy greens are beneficial to those with arthritis.