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Foods that Should be Avoided with Osteoarthritis & Arthritis

By Jonathan Wells, 8:48 pm on

During the natural aging process, seniors encounter a wide range of physical changes and must carefully monitor their health, particularly their bone health. With age, the joints can degenerate, causing friction between them and resulting in pain and discomfort. However, did you know that certain foods could worsen conditions of the joints such as osteoarthritis and arthritis? Today, Home Care Assistance, one of the top home care agencies in Douglas County, is going to provide some information on both conditions and tips for how to minimize associated discomfort through one’s diet.

Osteoarthritis Offenders

Osteoarthritis is a condition by which the joints degenerate. Cushioning cartilage thins with time, causing joint space narrowing and friction, resulting in joint pain and inflammation. Certain foods can be problematic for some arthritis sufferers.  While dietary experimentation can rule out offenders, the following foods are commonly known to worsen arthritic inflammation:

  • Dairy Products – According to the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, milk protein may irritate the tissues surrounding joints.
  • Corn Oil – This particular type of oil contains omega-6 fatty acids, which can trigger inflammation. Corn oil can be present in unhealthy baked goods and snacks.
  • Nightshade Plants – “Nightshades” are plants that grow in the shade of night. Many vegetables are categorized as nightshades including potatoes, eggplant, tomatoes, and various pepper varieties. Because 1 in 3 people with arthritis reports increased pain and stiffness with consumption of nightshades, some doctors suggest eliminating these types of foods for 2-3 weeks to see if symptoms improve.

Rheumatoid Arthritis Risks

Rheumatoid arthritis is another type of joint disease. It differs from osteoarthritis in several ways. Osteoarthritis (0A) strikes later in life, while rheumatoid arthritis (RA) can arise at any age. With RA, the auto-immune system is impaired. Immune cells attack joint linings, considering them as invaders. Other symptoms of RA are damage to the eyes, lungs, and heart. Rheumatoid arthritis can also damage as many as 30 joints, and usually begins in the hands and wrists.

There are many noble foods that can worsen the symptoms of RA, although the impact varies between individuals. Similar to osteoarthritis, seniors with RA should try to limit corn safflower oil, and coffee from their diet. Whether coffee is healthy or not is widely disputed among scientists. It is reputed to have antioxidants, substances that protect against cellular damage. However, in the case of RA, coffee can worsen symptoms.

Getting Help for Seniors with Joint Problems

If you have an aging parent or loved one with joint problems or joint pain, activities of daily living are likely difficult to perform. Provide them with the care and assistance they need by contacting Home Care Assistance of Douglas County today. Our highly trained and compassionate caregivers can provide part-time assistance with nutritious meal preparation, personal care, light housekeeping, transportation and more, and are also available for Douglas County live-in home care to ensure safety and maximize comfort.

To learn more about in-home care for seniors in Douglas County or to schedule a complimentary, in-home consultation, call a friendly Care Manager at 720-441-3522.