While there’s no definitive diet to cure psoriatic arthritis, many people with the disease vouch that watching what they eat brings them significant relief from the symptoms. Learn what foods can make a difference.
The mention of the word ‘psoriasis’ usually makes people think of an itchy skin disease that also causes scaly rashes. While this is true, around 30 percent of the people with psoriasis happen to develop psoriatic arthritis, a type of inflammatory arthritis that causes joint pain, swelling, and stiffness. Psoriatic arthritis is an autoimmune disease, which means that it occurs in people when the body’s immune system begins attacking healthy tissues and cells, in this case, your joints and skin. This unusual immune response in your body causes inflammation that prompts swelling and stiffness in the joints. If left untreated, this inflammation can affect your entire body, and even lead to permanent damage in the joints and tissue.
Psoriatic arthritis can affect any part of your body, which includes your spine and fingertips, and the pain can range from mild to quite severe. Apart from inflammation and pain in the joints, this disease can cause foot pain, swelling in your fingers and toes, and lower back pain. There is no cure for psoriatic arthritis as of right now, but the right treatment and lifestyle changes can control the symptoms and prevent further damage to your joints. Many natural remedies and alternative therapies are also used by people with this disease to get relief from the symptoms.
Can changes in your diet help in the treatment of psoriatic arthritis? The answer remains a much-debated topic, but in several cases, people suffering from this chronic health condition reported considerable relief from the painful symptoms after adjusting their diet. Here are some of the dietary modifications that you can make to handle the symptoms of psoriatic arthritis, and ease the pain and inflammation caused by the disease.
A healthy and balanced diet can help control your weight and boost your overall health. However, there are some foods that are considered to be effective in fighting inflammation, one of the major symptoms of psoriatic arthritis. Here are some foods that you can include in your diet to help your body fight the disease.
Cold-water fish such as salmon, albacore tuna, herring, mackerel, and lake trout contain high amounts of omega-3 fatty acids, and consuming these fish is highly recommended for people who are suffering from inflammatory conditions like psoriatic arthritis. Eating cold-water fish at least twice a week is also beneficial to your heart as it reduces the risk of you developing any coronary artery disease. This is particularly significant, as people with psoriatic arthritis are at a higher risk of suffering a heart attack or stroke.
Available commonly in most kitchens, we hardly think of garlic as anything more than a means to add flavor to various dishes; however, this vegetable has many inflammation-fighting properties. In addition, garlic (especially raw garlic) is loaded with Vitamin C; in fact, it contains more than five times the amount of vitamin C that is found in carrots. Crushed garlic also has plenty of allicin, zinc and selenium, all of which are nutrients known to have strong antioxidant properties. Consuming raw garlic can help control your pain and inflammation, while boosting your overall health as well.
Another food that can help fight inflammation, kale is a vegetable highly preferred by people who watch their daily intake of nutritious food. This green vegetable is rich in fiber as well as vitamins A, C, and K. In addition, it contains several flavonoids that have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. A study published in 2014 shows that kale may slow down inhibit tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha), which are the same inflammatory proteins that are targeted by several medications used to treat psoriatic arthritis.
If you have psoriatic arthritis, it increases your risk of being affected by heart diseases. To combat this, maintaining normal blood cholesterol levels are vital, and eating whole grains is a natural way to do so. Whole grains such as whole-wheat pasta, wild rice, barley, and quinoa not only keep your blood cholesterol levels from rising, but are also packed with fiber which is great for your overall health. Talk to your doctor or a nutrition expert to determine the correct quantity of whole grains that you should eat daily or weekly.
Cherries and berries
Cherries, blueberries, strawberries, and other berries contain phytonutrients (natural compounds found in plant foods that promote good health) known as anthocyanins, which can work in soothing inflammation caused in your body by psoriatic arthritis. Tart cherry juice can particularly be helpful as it has the highest concentration of antioxidants and inflammation fighters. In a study, researchers at the Oregon Health & Science University in Portland found that participants who were suffering inflammation caused by arthritis and drank tart cherry juice twice every day displayed lower levels of inflammatory markers in their blood.
It is important for you to get adequate Vitamin D from your diet, as it can help you to manage the pain that is caused by psoriatic arthritis. Foods such as mushrooms, eggs, and fortified breads and yogurt are excellent sources of this vitamin. If you are not getting sufficient Vitamin D, talk to your doctor about taking a daily Vitamin D supplement.
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