Since inflammation causes pain in many diseases and conditions like arthritis, certain foods can relive or exacerbate pain. Therefore, it’s important to maintain a special diet when you have a medical condition that causes chronic pain.
Medication is proven to relieve pain but many people report that food affects their well-being and function. Here are some foods that can be helpful or harmful for people with chronic pains.
Good Foods For Pain & Inflammation
Turmeric is a popular spice in India and many parts of Asia which has mild anti-inflammatory properties. Therefore, try to eat it daily to achieve better results. Curcumin is an active compound in turmeric which is responsible for anti-inflammatory properties.
Many studies have shown that phytochemicals contained in onions may reduce chronic inflammation. Onions also contain substances that reduce your risk of cancer.
Strawberries, Raspberries, and Blackberries
In one study, animals that were treated with red raspberry extract had lower risks of arthritis and lower risk of severe arthritis if they already suffered from this disease.
Berries also have a protective effect on cartilage due to the phytochemicals they contain. These phytochemicals are responsible for colors seen in lots of different berries.
A vegetable-rich diet is a good way to decrease inflammation. Studies found that people who regularly ate vegetables had a 61% decreased risk of rheumatoid arthritis compared to people who didn’t. Vegetarian diets may also be helpful for swollen joints and joint pain.
Since some studies believe that there is a connection between rheumatoid arthritis and gut, yogurts with probiotics may help. These studies suggest that a healthy gut may control some of the inflammation if you have good bacteria fighting for your health.
Olive oil contains omega-3 fatty acids which help reduce painful joint inflammation. It is also the main product in the Mediterranean diet. This diet reduces inflammation in people with rheumatoid arthritis and enhances physical function and vitality.
Oleocanthal which is contained in olive oil has the same effect as ibuprofen, aspirin, and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications.
Salmon also contains omega-3 fatty acids which are beneficial for people with rheumatoid arthritis. Studies have also shown that omega-3 fatty acids found in fish may even prevent RA. Mackerel, sardines, and tuna are also good sources of omega-3.
Bad Foods For Pain & Inflammation
Some studies suggest that certain dairy products are good for rheumatoid arthritis while other dairy products may be harmful. People who have a milk allergy will develop joint swelling which results in arthritis if they drink milk.
But on the other hand, one study of almost 30,000 women found that those people who consumed milk products high in vitamin D had a lower risk of rheumatoid arthritis. Vitamin D has an anti-inflammatory property.
Butter & Bacon
Arachidonic acid found in butter, bacon, and other animal products can worsen pain, swelling, and inflammation in patients with rheumatoid arthritis. Chronic pain management doctors recommend choosing lean proteins and fats instead of animal fats.
People with celiac disease have a very high risk of rheumatoid arthritis, so some people with arthritis avoid gluten.
Gluten is contained in barely, bread, cereal, pasta, and wheat. You can replace these products with nuts, rice, legumes, and quinoa. But if you don’t have severe gluten intolerance then there’s no need to start a gluten-free diet.
According to one study, obesity increases the risk of rheumatoid arthritis by 24%. Extra pounds also put unnecessary stress on joints. Sugary drinks are considered a contributor to obesity since they are low in nutrients and high in calories. Therefore, it might be better to avoid them as part of the daily menu.