Friday, March 19, 2010

Link Between Arthritis and Diet

Diet is often linked to many health conditions and in some cases a change in diet can alter the way your body is reacting. For example, people with Adult Onset Diabetes can effectively change their disease by simply altering their diet. The same can be said of some types of arthritis. There is a definite link between arthritis and diet that if followed can help alleviate symptoms and bring relief from suffering.

One type of arthritis that can be helped with diet is gout. Gout is an extremely painful condition that is characterized by attacks of acute inflammatory arthritis. The affected area, usually the feet, is swollen, red, tender to the touch and hot. Gout is caused by high levels of uric acid building up in the blood. This acid crystallizes and settles in the joints, tendons and surrounding tissues. Diet can play a large role in keeping bouts of gout from occurring as frequently. Gout is often caused by diets high meats, seafood, sugar, and alcohol. When these items are decreased in the diet the attacks of gout are less frequent.

Diet can also play a part in arthritis due to weight being a factor in arthritis pain. If you are heavier than you should be and you have arthritis your body is dealing with extra stress on its joints. Eating a healthy diet that keeps your weight under control is one way you can incorporate your diet into your arthritis treatment.

Food allergies are also thought to be triggers of arthritis attacks. According to Diet and Nutrition, some foods that are known to cause the immune system to malfunction are caffeine, dairy products, salt, red meats, chocolate, sugar, additives and preservatives and dairy products. Knowing that these foods are immune system related and allergen triggers makes it possible that they are responsible for triggering attacks of asthma.

The link between diet and arthritis is not always scientifically proven; however, you can determine if your body is reacting to a certain food by removing it from your diet for a period of time. If you don’t have an arthritis flare up, put the food back in your diet and see if you have an arthritis attack. You can do this on your own to find the link in your diet to your arthritis attacks.


Photo: Suat Eman

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

6 Tips for Dealing with Arthritis Knees

If you have been told by your doctor that you have arthritis knees, then you’re probably in a quandary with a million questions racing through your mind. Arthritis knees means that your knee joints are swelling, you are suffering from stiffness, and experiencing some degree of pain.

This condition can happen to any adult, not necessarily a senior citizen. In fact, for every three Americans, one suffers from some kind of arthritis. It has become a major medical concern, but the good news is that there are ways to alleviate the pain and discomfort you feel. Here are some tips you can try.

Tip 1

If you are overweight, you must try to shed some pounds to relieve the pressure on your knees. It will make it easier for you to go around without limping. Exercise and proper diet will not only make it easier for you to move around, it will pick up your spirits. Join a gym or sign up for an exercise class, and make some friends.

Tip 2

Before you sign up for any exercise program, ask your doctor’s approval. There are some exercises that can put too much pressure on the knees. This will be counter-productive and could cause injury to your already weakened arthritis knees.

Also, make sure to follow proper protocol when going through an exercise plan. This means that you need to stretch those muscles slowly to warm them up before going into the heavier activities, and warming down slowly at the end of your session.

People with arthritis knees need to be very careful about injuries, however slight. This is because it can aggravate your situation, and cause you more pain.

Tip 3

Take a warm Epsom salt bath. Epsom salts is very effective in eliminating mineral deposits and toxins from our body. These are major causes of arthritis so getting them out of your system will help you.

Tip 4

Include anti-oxidants and Omega 3 in your daily diet. You need to start eating healthier, and avoiding fast food restaurants, the dessert tray, and TV dinners which are very high in sodium.

Tip 5

Relax with a massage. If you can massage your arthritis knees for 10 minutes a day with lotion or massage oil, you will be able to lessen the inflammation.

Tip 6

Try green tea. This is a very good drink for people suffering from arthritis. You can brew your own or use the convenient green tea bags for your daily dose. Some have been known to drink more than 3 cups a day, and claim that it not only helps their arthritis, it also helps improve their skin, lose weight, and freshens breath because it works great as a mouthwash.

Dealing with arthritis knees is something you will have to accept. However, it does not mean you have to give in to it. Keep learning and stay alert for new FDA-approved treatments.