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Nutrition Therapy for Rheumatoid Arthritis

By  ,  Onlymyhealth editorial team
Oct 20, 2012
4.8 / 5(4 Ratings)

Nutrients present in various food items can help those suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, which  is an inflammatory disorder that affects the tissues and organs, but principally attacks the synovial or the flexible joints. There are many therapy options for a patient diagnosed with rheumatoid arthiritis with several non-drug treatments right on top of the efficiency list, such as exercising and nutrition. If you are suffering from rheumatoid arthritis then you can ditch the drugs and look to heal naturally with nutrition therapy.    

 

[Read: Rheumatoid Arthritis Treatment]


Rheumatoid arthritis patients should be on a diet  rich in natural anti-inflammatories, antioxidants, and joint-supporting nutrients and should avoid pro-inflammatory foods that are high in sugar and saturated and trans-fatty acids.

 

The Problem of Malnutrition

In people suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, the production of cytokines, such as interleukin-1 and tumor necrosis factor, increases, thus increasing the metabolic rate and protein breakdown. The patient then faces the challenge of increasing both calorie and protein intake so as to meet the nutritional requirements of the metabolic rate that has increased.

 

Patients taking medications for arthritis for a long period of time may also suffer from these nutritional problems. For instance,receiving methotrexate, andis frequently identified with folic acid deficiency. Also, if there is aprolonged dosage of other RA medications then complications such as gastritis or peptic ulcer, are observed and this leads to a loss in the patient’s apetite.

 

[Read: Rheumatoid Arthritis Diet]

 

The Therapy

  • Betain HCL: supplementation of betain HCL with meals will help in the digestion of protein and will also reduce sensitivities to food through improved digestion. This helps as it has been found that many rheumatoid arthritis patients are deficient in stomach acid and other such digestive factors.
  • DLPA (D, L-phenylalanine): This is a mixture of the phenylalanine (L form) with its mirror image (the D form). This D form has been found to be an effective pain reliever that works against the chronic pain of rheumatoid arthritis along with other problems such as the osteoarthritis, low back pain and migraine.
  • EPA: Researchers have found that a diet that is rich in polyunsaturated fat and low in saturated fat supplemented by a daily dose of 1.8 grams of eicosapentaenoic acid brings about a massive physical improvement in patients suffering from RA.
  • Flavonoids: it has been found that bioflavonoids can have a beneficial effect on the individuals suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. It is best to take flavoniods in between meals with pancreatic enzymes or bromelaine.   
  • Manganese: This helps in the antioxidant activity and the daily dosage recommended is of 30 grams.
  • Glucosamine Sulfate: Known to be moderately effective in healing  RA, one should take a daily dose of 500 mg three times daily.


Food Items:


Dairy and Meat: It has been found that dairy and other animal products, especially red meat, raises the production of inflammatory substances such as prostaglandins and leukotrienes in the body. Hence, their consumption may worsen RA in those individuals who are sensitive.


Fish Oil: Fish oil can be taken as it can be beneficial for treating your RA; you must however consult a doctor. Fish oil contains a large amount of omega-3 fatty acids, and this is used by the body to reduce inflammation. For this purpose it is recommended that you should eat herring, mackerel, salmon, and tuna at least twice a week as they supply considerable amount of omega-3 fatty acids.


Histidine Containing Foods: Foods that contain the amino acid histidine can be eaten as histidine removes heavy metals from the body, which is actually instrumental in aggravating arthritic symptoms. You will find this amino acid in large quantities in foods like brown rice, wheat, and rye. Other beneficial foods for healing RA may also include fresh vegetables, especially the leafy green ones, non-acidic fruit, whole grains, oatmeal, fish and avocados.

 

Read more articles on Nutritional Therapy

 

 

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