ARTHRITIS anti-inflammatory DIET

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Food NameProteinCarbFatCholSugarFiberSodium 
Milk, human174147017
Milk, cow's, fluid, whole353105040
Milk, cow's, fluid, whole, low-sodium34314403
Milk, calcium fortified, cow's, fluid, whole353105040
Milk, calcium fortified, cow's, fluid, 1% fat35155044
Milk, calcium fortified, cow's, fluid, skim or nonfat35025052
Milk, cow's, fluid, other than whole ("lowfat")35165042
Milk, cow's, fluid, 2% fat35285041
Milk, cow's, fluid, acidophilus, 1% fat35155044
Milk, cow's, fluid, acidophilus, 2% fat35285041
Milk, cow's, fluid, 1% fat35155044
Milk, cow's, fluid, skim or nonfat, 0.5% or less butterfat35025042
Milk, cow's, fluid, filled with vegetable oil35325057


If you feel pain and stiffness in your body or have trouble moving around, you might have arthritis. Most kinds of arthritis cause pain and swelling in your joints. Joints are places where two bones meet, such as your elbow or knee. Over time, a swollen joint can become severely damaged. Some kinds of arthritis can also cause problems in your organs, such as your eyes or skin.

One type of arthritis, osteoarthritis, is often related to aging or to an injury. Other types occur when your immune system, which normally protects your body from infection, attacks your body's own tissues. Rheumatoid arthritis is the most common form of this kind of arthritis. Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis is a form of the disease that happens in children. Infectious arthritis is an infection that has spread from another part of the body to the joint.

Nutrition and Arthritis

A good diet is important for everyone, but it is especially helpful for people with arthritis. The National Institutes of Health recommends seven basic guidelines for a balanced, healthy arthritis diet.

  • Eat a variety of foods
  • Maintain ideal weight
  • Avoid too much fat and cholesterol
  • Avoid too much sugar
  • Eat foods with enough starch and fiber
  • Avoid too much sodium
  • Drink alcohol in moderation

Researches on Arthritis Pain and Nutrition

In one of the largest analyses of diet and various types of arthritis, Dietary Interventions for Rheumatoid Arthritis by Norway's National Resource Centre for Rehabilitation in Rheumatology, researchers looked at data on more than 800 patients from 15 studies. They examined several diets popular among arthritis patients and found that the one that had the greatest effect was a Mediterranean-type diet emphasizing foods like fruits, vegetables, grains, fish and olive oil, while limiting red meat. In 12 weeks, people on the diet reported about 15 percent less pain.

In another study, Anti-inflammatory effects of a low arachidonic acid diet and fish oil in patients with rheumatoid arthritis by Germany's Medizinische Klinik Innenstadt der LMU, patients who were given daily capsules of fish oil with their antirheumatic medications saw greater benefits for swollen and tender joints than patients given a placebo, apparently because of the oil’s anti-inflammatory properties.
Meanwhile, vegetables in the nightshade family, like potatoes and tomatoes, have long been said to contribute to arthritis pain. Some researchers have speculated that a group of compounds in the vegetables called alkaloids might worsen inflammation in sensitive people.

Common Kinds of Arthritis

Arthritis is one of the most common diseases in the United States. Older people most often have osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, or gout.

Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis in older people. Osteoarthritis starts when tissue, called cartilage, that pads bones in a joint begins to wear away. When the cartilage has worn away, your bones rub against each other. Osteoarthritis most often happens in your hands, neck, lower back, or the large weight-bearing joints of your body, such as knees and hips. Osteoarthritis symptoms range from stiffness and mild pain that comes and goes to pain that doesn’t stop, even when you are resting or sleeping. Sometimes OA causes your joints to feel stiff after you haven’t moved them for awhile, like after riding in the car. The stiffness goes away when you move the joint. Over time, OA can make it hard to move your joints. It can cause a disability if your back, knees, or hips are affected.

Why do you get osteoarthritis?
Growing older is what most often puts you at risk for osteoarthritis, possibly because your joints and the cartilage around them become less able to recover from stress and damage. Also, osteoarthritis in the hands may run in families. Or, osteoarthritis in the knees can be linked with being overweight. Injuries or overuse may cause osteoarthritis in joints such as knees, hips, or hands.

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease, a type of illness that makes your body attack itself. Rheumatoid arthritis causes pain, swelling, and stiffness that lasts for hours. Rheumatoid arthritis can happen in many different joints at the same time. People with RA often feel tired or run a fever. Rheumatoid arthritis is more common in women than men.
Rheumatoid arthritis can damage almost any joint. It often happens in the same joint on both sides of your body. Rheumatoid arthritis can also cause problems with your heart, muscles, blood vessels, nervous system, and eyes.

Gout is one of the most painful kinds of arthritis. It most often happens in the big toe, but other joints can also be affected. Swelling may cause the skin to pull tightly around the joint and make the area red or purple and very tender.
Eating foods rich in purines like liver, dried beans, peas, anchovies, or gravy can lead to a gout attack. Using alcohol, being overweight, and taking certain medications may make gout worse. In older people, some blood pressure medicines can also increase the chance of a gout attack. To decide if you have gout, your doctor might do blood tests and x-rays.

Treating Arthritis

Getting enough rest, doing the right exercise, eating a healthy, well-balanced diet, and learning the right way to use and protect your joints are keys to living with any kind of arthritis. The right shoes and a cane can help with pain in the feet, knees, and hips when walking. There are also gadgets to help you open jars and bottles or to turn the doorknobs in your house.

Some medicines can help with pain and swelling. Acetaminophen might ease arthritis pain. Some people find NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), like ibuprofen, naproxen, and ketoprofen, helpful. Some NSAIDs are sold without a prescription, while others must be prescribed by a doctor. Be very careful about possible side effects of some NSAIDs, whether sold with or without a prescription. Read the warnings on the package or insert that comes with the drug. Talk to your doctor about if and how you should use acetaminophen or NSAIDs for your arthritis pain.

Medicines can help you control the pain. Rest and exercise may make it easier to move your joints. Keeping your weight down is a good idea. If pain from OA is very bad, there are shots your doctor can give you.

Rheumatoid arthritis
Treatment can help the pain and swelling. This might slow down or stop joint damage. You may feel better and find it easier to move around. Your doctor might also suggest anti-rheumatic drugs called DMARDs (disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs). These can slow damage from the disease. Other medicines known as corticosteroids (like prednisone) can ease swelling. Another kind of drug, called a biologic response modifier, blocks the damage done by the immune system. These may help people with mild-to-moderate rheumatoic arthritis when other treatments have not worked.

The most common treatment for an acute attack of gout is NSAIDs or glucocorticoids like prednisone. They can bring down the swelling, so you may start to feel better within a few hours after treatment. The pain usually goes away within a few days. Glucocorticoids are strong medicines. They should only be taken with a doctor’s prescription. If you have had an attack of gout, talk to your doctor to learn why you had the attack and how to prevent future attacks. If you have had several attacks, your doctor might prescribe medicines to prevent future ones.

How to use the DietGrail food database to select foods for arthritis

This arthritis food database provides the fat, carbohydrate and protein contents, as well as those of sugar, cholesterol, fiber and sodium, of approximately 7,000 food items. A food's mineral and vitamin contents are displayed in charts to allow easy evaluation of its nutrition. You can use these vitamin and mineral charts to choose the most nutrient-dense foods and avoid foods with empty calories.
In addition, the calorie pie chart shows the contribution of fat, carb and protein to the food's total calorie. If you wish to choose low-carb foods, you can sort foods by their carb contents, or review the calorie chart and choose those where carb's contribution to total calorie value is lowest.
Foods can be searched by name and sorted by macronutrient contents to help you find the most appropriate foods.

Usage Note

  • Sugars, fiber, fat, carbohydrate and protein values in table are in grams and calculated per 100g of food.
  • Cholesterol (Chol) and sodium are measured in mg.
  • Click on column header to sort foods by name or by fat, carbohydrate or protein content.
  • Pie chart shows relative contributions to total calories from carbohydrate, protein and fat (and alcohol, if exists).
  • The mineral and vitamin charts show the relative contents of minerals and vitamins of each food. The higher the bubble, the higher mineral or vitamin content a food has relative to other foods. The larger the bubble, the greater the mineral or vitamin content relative to the Recommended Daily Allowances.

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