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Avoid these foods if you have arthritis

George Morris Physio Wigan

Avoid these foods if you have arthritis

Avoid these foods if you have arthritis

While some foods are known to relieve arthritis symptoms, others can actually aggravate them. With your doctor's approval, here are some foods that you should remove from your diet if you suffer from this chronic disease.


Arthritis sufferers already have large numbers of cytokines, pro-inflammatory proteins, in their bodies. Consuming sugar further increases the number of cytokines, exacerbating inflammation, pain, stiffness, and swelling. The Arthritis Foundation recommends using artificial sweeteners to decrease sugar intake.

Vegetable oils

Avoid cooking with certain vegetable oils (like canola and sunflower oil). Rich in omega-6, they are known to increase inflammation. Opt for olive oil instead.


Crisps are a popular snack because they're tasty and affordable. They are also an ultra-processed food that can cause inflammation. One Brazilian study found a link between the degree to which a food is processed and its inflammatory potential.

French fries

High in salt and calories, French fries are often cooked in corn oil, a significant source of pro-inflammatory omega-6. They are also rich in trans fat, which increases pain in people with arthritis.

White rice

While it may be the perfect side dish, white rice is a refined grain. Refined grains are known to increase inflammation. Choose whole-grain varieties, like brown or wild rice, instead.


While consuming beer in moderation helps protect women from rheumatoid arthritis, those suffering from this disease should be careful. The interaction between the alcohol in beer and rheumatoid arthritis medication could damage the liver. People with gout, another form of arthritis, are also warned against drinking beer, which can aggravate symptoms and diminish the effect of medications.


If you take arthritis medication, such as non-steroid anti-inflammatories, consult your doctor before drinking wine. Indeed, alcohol increases your risk of suffering stomach bleeding and ulcers and developing liver damage.

Red meat

Rich in omega-6, red meat raises the concentration of pro-inflammatory proteins in the body. No matter what type of arthritis you have, increasing inflammation risks reviving, or even aggravating, your symptoms


While very popular in fast-food restaurants, cheeseburgers should be banned from your diet if you suffer from arthritis. In one study, researchers fed mice fatty foods, like cheeseburgers, for 12 weeks. At the end of their experiment, they noted that the mice's intestines were full of pro-inflammatory bacteria, suggesting that this food could increase pain in those with arthritis


Do you often experience joint pain after drinking a milkshake? You're not imagining it. Full of fat and calories, this beverage is known to increase pain in those suffering from arthritis. In fact, one study has shown that regular consumption of milkshakes tends to augment the concentration of pro-inflammatory bacteria in the intestines.


A survey of over 1,000 arthritis sufferers revealed that eating eggplant can worsen symptoms. In fact, the solanine in this vegetable increases inflammation in the body. That said, not everyone experiences the same reaction to consuming eggplant, and research in this area is scant. The Arthritis Foundation has, therefore, suggested keeping a food journal to verify that eggplant is indeed responsible for your joint pain.


If you suffer from arthritis, be sure to monitor your coffee intake. This popular beverage can weaken bones and increase joint pain in some people. Water remains one of the best things arthritis patients can drink because it helps diminish joint pain by sufficiently hydrating the body.

Carbonated drinks

Remove sodas from your menu, especially if you have gout, a form of inflammatory arthritis. High in fructose, these beverages can trigger an attack of gout. Furthermore, one study has shown that regular soda consumption increases the risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis in women.


The Arthritis Foundation discourages those living with arthritis from consuming margarine. Rich in trans fat, margarine increases the body's bad cholesterol levels while lowering its good cholesterol levels. It also promotes inflammation.

White bread

Eating white bread increases your risk of developing inflammation. Why? This food is made from refined grains, which are low in vitamins, minerals, and proteins. Unlike whole grains, refined grains are rapidly transformed by the body into sugar, a particularly inflammatory substance


Consuming salt is harmful to those suffering from rheumatoid arthritis and even more so for patients taking corticosteroids, a medication known to heighten salt's negative effects.


If you eat lots of pizza, removing this food from your diet may, in certain cases, decrease your arthritis pain. High in saturated fat, pizza causes inflammation in the body.

Hot dogs

Rich in nitrites, fat, and salt, hot dogs are not especially good for your health. In addition to being carcinogenic, they cause joint pain in those with osteoarthritis. Be careful with vegetarian hot dogs as well, as several remain quite salty and fatty


Are you gluten-intolerant or have celiac disease? According to the Arthritis Foundation, eliminating all pasta and any other foods containing gluten from your menu will help reduce your symptoms. Removing gluten from your body will also aid in decreasing inflammation.


Some store-bought cookies are especially rich in omega-6, fatty acids known for increasing inflammation and joint pain. If you're in the mood for a sweet treat, eat fruit. Most have anti-inflammatory properties and are full of vitamins


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