5 Joint-Friendly Foods to Add to Your Diet
In one survey of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) sufferers, 25 percent of the respondents reported that their diet had an impact on their symptoms. Even if you’re not dealing with this type of joint pain at the moment, it’s never too soon to start doing good things for your body’s 360 joints.
1. Cherries and Other Berries
Berries, in general, are good for joints because they’re rich in the antioxidants that keep cells and tissues healthy. But cherries stand out from the pack because they have chemicals called anthocyanins – a type of flavonoid with additional antioxidant effects. There’s also research suggesting that tart cherry juice and fresh cherries may reduce the inflammation that can contribute to joint pain.
This particular “food” is easy to work into any diet since it can be included in many different recipes. Garlic is especially good for joints because it has proven anti-inflammatory properties. In one study of the diets of more than a thousand twins, it was discovered that those who consumed more garlic had a lower risk of developing osteoarthritis (OA) around their hip joints.
3. Red Peppers
Prefer some spice in your diet? Consider making red peppers one of your go-to foods. In addition to being flavorful, red peppers are also an excellent and tasty source of vitamin C. This important vitamin plays a key role in the production of collagen, which plays a role in creating the soft tissues – e.g., ligaments, tendons, and cartilage – that help support your joints.
Nutrient-loaded walnuts can be enjoyed as snacks, served with a light and airy cream, placed in chili to create a powerful flavor kick, or in Portobello mushrooms – which, incidentally are chock full of thiamine, potassium, copper, zinc, and certain B vitamins that are also good for your joints. And there’s compelling research suggesting that the omega-3 fatty acids in walnuts may decrease symptoms associated with arthritis.
5. Canned Salmon and Other Fatty Fish
Mackerel, sardines, and trout are among the types of fatty fish with high amounts of beneficial, inflammation-fighting Omega-3s. But canned salmon is an especially good choice since it’s packed with the calcium and vitamin D needed to keep your joints and bones healthy and strong. One multi-study analysis showed that omega-3 fatty acid supplements contributed to a decrease in joint pain and stiffness and the use of pain medications by RA sufferers.
If you need some extra help with your efforts to add the foods discussed here to your diet, consider having regular cooking parties with a healthy theme. Also, when you host family gatherings, purposely prepare tasty dishes with some of the foods listed above to make it easier to get into the habit of enjoying a diet that’s good for your joints. And, who knows, you might even inspire your friends and family members to eat more joint-friendly foods, too!