Pain, swelling, and stiffness are what individuals with osteoarthritis (OA) typically feel daily. When tackling these symptoms, you don’t want to overlook the power of what you eat. With the changing of the seasons, we have some fall foods for OA sufferers you may want to consider.
OA and What We Eat
Osteoarthritis involves a breakdown of the cartilage. This material provides a cushion in our joints, and over time the loss of it leads to pain, swelling, and stiffness. The most common areas OA occurs are in the knees, hips, lower back, and neck. However, it can happen in any joint.
Over-the-counter pain relievers and prescription medications are two standard options for OA treatments. However, what you eat can make a difference when it comes to osteoarthritis. For example, OA is characterized by chronic inflammation that causes much of the damage. What we consume can also increase or reduce the amount of inflammation in our bodies. If you eat foods known to counter inflammation, you have a better chance of combating your osteoarthritis symptoms.
Eating Right Can Help in Other Ways Too
One of the best lifestyle choices for easing osteoarthritis pain is maintaining a healthy diet. In addition to reducing the effects of inflammation, it can also help you lose weight. Many people with osteoarthritis benefit from losing weight because of the increasing pressure excess weight puts on the joints. Below are some of the recommended foods to eat if you have OA:
- Fruits and vegetables-These contain antioxidants that reduce inflammation in the body. They also help your digestive health and fill you up quicker. Here are some choices particularly rich in inflammation-fighting antioxidants. Examples:
- Berries, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, citrus fruits, papaya, pumpkin, and sweet potatoes.
- Omega-3 fatty acids– Omega-3 fatty acids help neutralize inflammation in the body. Examples:
- Salmon, tuna, ground flaxseed, chia seeds, and walnuts.
- Nuts– Nuts contain healthy monosaturated fats and can fight against inflammation. Examples:
- Walnuts, almonds, and pistachios.
- Extra-virgin olive oil– A type of fatty acid found in olive oil called oleocanthal may inhibit inflammatory compounds in the body.
- Aim for one to two tablespoons daily in your diet. Other healthy oil choices include avocado and walnut oils.
Help Improve Current and Future Lives of OA Sufferers
OA is the most common type of arthritis, affecting more than 30 million U.S. adults. Breakthroughs in research have allowed us to continually improve the care and lives of individuals living with OA. If you have OA of the knee, you can help advance options for this condition as a research participant.
Get involved today in enrolling OA of the knee studies here at North Georgia Clinical Research. Call us at (678) 494-5735 or visit our website to learn more!