Rheumatoid Arthritis Diet

Preventing Osteoporosis

People with rheumatoid arthritis are at an increased risk of developing osteoporosis (bone thinning). This risk is especially high in people who have rheumatoid arthritis and are also taking glucocorticoids. Diet (along with other strategies) can play a role in preventing osteoporosis. Some recommendations for optimizing bone health include:
 
  • A balanced diet rich in calcium and vitamin D. In most cases, 1000 mg of calcium per day is recommended.
  • Weight-bearing exercises. Young people who exercise regularly achieve greater peak bone mass (maximum bone density and strength) than those who do not.
  • A healthy lifestyle with no smoking or excessive alcohol intake. Smoking and alcohol are linked to bone loss.
  • Bone density testing and medication (see Osteoporosis Medications). Your doctor may also recommend these if you are at a high risk of developing osteoporosis.
     
(Click Osteoporosis and Rheumatoid Arthritis for more information, including more detail about osteoporosis prevention strategies.)
 

Are There Foods to Avoid as Part of a Rheumatoid Arthritis Diet?

While there are no foods that most people with rheumatoid arthritis need to avoid, you may believe that certain foods seem to worsen your rheumatoid arthritis symptoms.
 
Following is a list of foods that are commonly reported to worsen rheumatoid arthritis symptoms in some people:
 
  • The nightshade family of plants (including white potatoes, tomatoes, eggplant, and peppers)
  • Dairy
  • Citrus fruits
  • Acidic foods
  • Sweets
  • Coffee
  • Animal protein.
     
What should you do if you think certain foods are making your rheumatoid arthritis symptoms worse? The first thing you should do is to keep a food diary. After a month, you may have some idea about which food could be provoking symptoms. You could then try eliminating that food from your diet for two weeks to see what happens. Don't cut out a whole food category; and make sure you are getting the vitamins and minerals that this food provides from other sources. It is also important to let your healthcare provider know that you are doing this.
Top Foods to Fight Inflammation

Information About Rheumatoid Arthritis

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