Foods to Avoid Eating When Managing Osteoarthritis & Rheumatoid Arthritis

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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 and resulting in pain and discomfort. However, certain foods can worsen conditions of the joints, such as osteoarthritis and arthritis. 

There are a variety of age-related health conditions that can make it more challenging for seniors to live independently. However, many of the challenges they face can be easier to address if their families opt for professional senior home care. You can rely on expertly trained caregivers to keep your loved one safe and comfortable while aging in place.

Here’s some information on osteoarthritis and arthritis and tips for how to minimize associated discomfort through diet. 

Osteoarthritis Offenders 

Osteoarthritis is a condition that causes the joints to 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 people with arthritis. 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 –These are plants that grow in the shade of night. Many vegetables are categorized as nightshades, including potatoes, eggplant, tomatoes, and various pepper varieties. Because a third of people with arthritis report increased pain and stiffness with consumption of nightshades, some doctors suggest eliminating these types of foods for 2–3 weeks to see if symptoms get better.

It’s important for family caregivers to help their loved ones maintain a healthy diet. Families who find it difficult to care for their aging loved ones without assistance can benefit greatly from professional respite care. Miami, FL, family caregivers who need a break from their caregiving duties can turn to Assisting Hands Home Care. Our caregivers can encourage your loved one to eat well, exercise regularly, get plenty of mental and social stimulation, and focus on other lifestyle factors that promote longevity.

Rheumatoid Arthritis Risks 

Rheumatoid arthritis is another type of joint disease. It differs from osteoarthritis in several ways. Osteoarthritis (OA) strikes later in life, while rheumatoid arthritis (RA) can arise at any age. With RA, the autoimmune system is impaired. Immune cells attack joint linings, considering them 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 foods that can worsen the symptoms of RA, although the impact varies among individuals. As with osteoarthritis, seniors with RA should try to limit corn oil, safflower oil, and coffee from their diet. Whether coffee is healthy or not is widely disputed among scientists. It’s reputed to have antioxidants, substances that protect against cellular damage. However, in the case of RA, coffee can worsen symptoms. 

Seniors who want to remain healthy as they age can benefit in a variety of ways when they receive professional Miami Beach home care, Assisting Hands Home Care is here to help your loved one accomplish daily tasks, prevent illness, and focus on living a healthier and more fulfilling life. Trust your loved one’s care to the professionals at Assisting Hands Home Care. Reach out to one of our compassionate Care Managers today at (305) 574-9137.