Using Diet to Help Control Arthritis Symptoms

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Diet is an important factor in many diseases including arthritis. Here are some tips to using diet to help control your arthritis symptoms.

* Eat a healthy, well balanced diet. This is the number one rule in controlling many diseases. When the body has the vitamins and nutrients it needs it is better able to fight off disease.

* Drink plenty of water. Drinking 8 glasses of water each day helps keep the cells hydrated and working their best.

* Eat foods that are high in antioxidants. Antioxidants are responsible for ridding the body of excess free radicals that can cause disease and break down the immune system. Antioxidants boost the immune system and have anti-inflammatory properties. Many vegetables and fruits contain high levels of antioxidants.

* Eat a low fat diet. Fats can do more harm than good to the body. Eliminate or cut back on saturated fats, which have detrimental effects. Eat the healthy types of fats instead.

* Eat foods that contain the five essential components, which include protein, carbohydrates, minerals, fats and vitamins.

* Some foods are thought to be triggers for arthritis flare-ups. While the jury is still out on whether or not this is true, some people swear by it. If you have certain foods that seem to cause you problems systematically eliminate them from your diet to see if you see improvement. Some common foods that may be possible culprits are acidic foods like tomatoes and oranges.

* Eat less processed foods. Processed foods contain chemical preservatives and excess salt, which is not good for the body. Processed foods also lose much of their nutritive value, particularly canned foods.

* Use more plant oils in cooking. Plant oils are thought to play a role in fighting arthritis. Olive oil is one of the best oils to use in your food.

* Eat foods that contain Omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids are known to reduce pain and inflammation of people with arthritis. It is found in oily fish such as mackerel, salmon, trout sardines and herring. Other good sources are grape seeds, walnuts, and oils such as safflower and canola.

* Supplement your diet with omega-3 fatty acids if you don't get enough in your regular diet. Supplements are readily available at your local pharmacy or health food store.

* Try to eat at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables each day. These contain antioxidants that are necessary to help fight arthritis.

* Eat foods that contain folic acid. Folic acid, also known as folate, is part of the B group of vitamins. These are good for counteracting some of the side effects of prescription rheumatoid arthritis medication. Folic acid is found in green leafy vegetables like spinach and cabbage as well as in whole grains and dairy products.

* Green tea has been found to be helpful in providing antioxidants and is helpful for those with osteoarthritis. Drink a cup of green tea daily.

While there is still much more research to be done, eating a healthy diet will help you to improve your health and can also help with arthritis symptoms.

About the Author:

Cathy Q is a professional writer and the author of several articles on health and wellness. For more information on arthritis treatments please visit her blogs at: and

Copyright (c) 2009 Cathy Q

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