Arthritis refers to a condition in which a person exhibits symptoms of joint pain and inflammation. It might be present in one joint or in multiple joints. Though, most commonly seen in adults who are more than 65 years of age it can affect people of any age group.
Cartilage is the soft connective tissue present between our joints, which connects them, allows smooth and flexible movement. Reduced cartilage leads to pain in joints and restricting the movement.
There are many types of arthritis but most common ones are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis (RA). It affects the joints causing pain, stiffness, inflammation and skin redness around the joint. Usually, a person suffering from RA experiences loss of appetite, which might cause anaemia and other nutritional deficiencies.
Treatment therapy includes medications and dietary management. Since there is inflammation in the body, hence, diet should be rich in foods that are anti-inflammatory in nature. In this article, we will discuss some of the foods that might prove beneficial in relieving the symptoms of arthritis.
1. Fatty Fish - Fatty fishes like salmon, tuna, mackerel and sardine are packed with omega 3 fatty acids, which are good for the body. The most prominent feature of omega 3 fats is their anti-inflammatory nature. Fatty fishes contain omega 3 in the form of EPA and DHA. These fatty acids suppress the level of inflammatory markers in the body, providing relief from pain and stiffness. Moreover, fishes also have vitamin D, which again makes them good for our joints and bone health. In case of unavailability of fish, opting for a fish oil supplement is a great alternative.
2. Garlic - Garlic is another favourable anti-inflammatory herb for arthritic patients. It has been widely known and accepted for its immune-boosting and anti-cancer properties. Several studies have shown that garlic has the potential to reduce the risk of osteoarthritis and inflammation as well.
3. Ginger - This is another spice, which should be included while planning an anti-inflammatory diet. Some clinical trials have observed the efficacy of ginger in reducing inflammation. It blocks the production of inflammation-causing substances in the body, thereby, providing relief from inflammation.
4. Broccoli - Broccoli is packed with nutrients and one of the preferred plant-based protein sources by vegetarians and vegans. Broccoli contains a compound called sulforaphane, which minimises inflammation in the body. It shown beneficial in slowing down the progress of rheumatoid arthritis development.
5. Nuts and Seeds - Plant-based sources of omega 3 fatty acids like walnuts, flax seeds and chia seeds also exert their anti-inflammatory effects on the body. They contain omega 3 in ALA form and aids in suppressing the inflammation.
To conclude, diet plays a considerable role in preventing or alleviating inflammation. The list is endless and along with above-mentioned foods, one can also opt for berries, tart cherry juice, olives, grapes, dark green leafy vegetables, soybean, etc. while planning the diet. One should refrain from consuming junk, processed, packaged foods. Sugar-based foods and beverages should also be avoided. A well-balanced diet focussing more on anti-inflammatory foods might aid in easing the symptoms, support joint movement and lead to normal life.