Arthritis: Avoiding ultra-processed foods can cause a ‘chain’ of problems

Arthritis is not a single disease, but a way of referring to joint pain or joint disease. There are more than 100 types of arthritis and related conditions. Currently, the NHS says there is no cure for arthritis, but there are several treatments that can help slow it down. In fact, certain foods can either help or trigger arthritis problems.

The trick is to avoid foods that cause inflammation, says Fran McElwaine, functional health practitioner and longevity coach.

“In short,” the health expert says, ultra-processed foods “contain a mix of other ingredients that can be highly inflammatory for a lot of people.”

These foods tend to include sugar, gluten, dairy products, soybeans, seed oils, artificial sweeteners, food preservatives, colorings, and other additives.

Fran notes, “If there is one thing I advise my clients to avoid is sugar and all highly processed carbohydrates.”

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She notes, “These foods cause a spike in blood sugar that sets off a chain reaction that leads to a number of inflammatory diseases, including arthritis.

Although there are certain foods that are a good idea to avoid, the Cleveland Clinic says, “Food is medicine. If you have arthritis pain, eating foods with antioxidants, anti-inflammatories, and analgesic properties—along with any medications or treatments) may help. Others your doctor recommends.”

The NHS encourages those with arthritis to eat a healthy, balanced diet and maintain a healthy weight. He explains that diets should consist of a variety of foods from all five food groups.

These are fruits, vegetables, starchy foods, meat, fish, eggs, and beans. A healthy body adds that you should include milk, dairy products, and foods that contain fat and sugar.

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The Arthritis Foundation notes that blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, cranberries, and cranberries may all also help treat arthritis symptoms.

There are several different types of this condition, although a healthy diet is always recommended.

Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis in the UK, affecting around eight million people, while rheumatoid arthritis affects more than 400,000 people.

Rheumatoid arthritis most often begins when a person is between 40 and 50 years old, and women are three times more affected than men.

There are some other habits and lifestyle changes that may help manage symptoms. You should also try to quit smoking.

“Smoking puts pressure on the connective tissues, which can increase osteoarthritis pain,” the Mayo Clinic says.

If you have arthritis, your joints are more likely to feel stiff and difficult to move, and you may also find that the area around your joints may feel warm or look red or swollen.

If you notice symptoms or are concerned about arthritis, it is important to talk to your doctor.

The Arthritis Foundation states: “Morning stiffness lasting more than an hour is good reason to suspect arthritis.”

Two other major signs are swelling and difficulty moving the joint.

Some types of arthritis cause the skin over the affected joint to become red and swollen, and it may start to feel warm to the touch.

If the swelling persists for three or more days or occurs more than three times a month, you should talk to your doctor.

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