What food is good for arthritis?

Foods That Help Manage Arthritis Symptoms

Any prescribed medications or therapies, making dietary changes by incorporating anti-inflammatory foods can help reduce joint pain and improve mobility. If you have been diagnosed with arthritis, it is advisable to consult an orthopedist in Chennai to help manage your symptoms and treatment plan.

Limit Inflammatory Foods

Before adding healthy foods to your diet, it is best to limit or avoid foods that may worsen inflammation and arthritis pain. These primarily include:

  • Fried and processed foods high in trans and saturated fats
  • Refined carbs like white bread, pastries, sodas, etc.
  • Red meat and high-fat dairy
  • Alcohol and tobacco
  • Foods you may be specifically sensitive or allergic to

Avoiding these inflammatory triggers can go a long way in easing joint discomfort. Moderation is key even when consuming typically healthy foods, as anything in excess can cause problems.

Anti-Inflammatory Foods to Include

Many foods have anti-inflammatory compounds and properties that can relieve arthritis symptoms. These provide antioxidants, healthy fats, vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals that reduce inflammation.

Fruits and Vegetables

Fruits and veggies should form the crux of an arthritis-friendly diet. Many studies prove that their high antioxidant, fiber, and nutrient content has anti-inflammatory benefits. They also displace inflammatory foods on the plate.

Some excellent options are:

  • All brightly colored fruits and vegetables: These contain antioxidants like anthocyanins and polyphenols. Include berries, cherries, broccoli, leafy greens, tomatoes, citrus fruits, etc.
  • Pineapple and papaya: These tropical fruits contain enzymes like bromelain and papain which have anti-inflammatory effects.
  • Vegetables from the cabbage family: Vegetables like cabbage, Brussels sprouts, kale, and broccoli contain a compound called sulforaphane which inhibits inflammatory chemicals.

Healthy Fats and Oils

Replacing saturated and trans fats with healthy fats provides the body with omega-3 fatty acids and oleic acid which reduce inflammation. Great sources are:

  • Cold water fatty fish like salmon, mackerel and tuna
  • Nuts and seeds like walnuts and flaxseeds
  • Olive oil
  • Avocados

Spices and Herbs

Certain spices are valued for their anti-arthritic abilities as they contain powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agents. These include:

  • Turmeric: The curcumin in turmeric blocks inflammatory cytokines and enzymes.
  • Ginger: Contains inflammation-inhibiting compounds like gingerol.
  • Garlic: Diallyl disulfide limits cartilage-damaging enzymes.
  • Pepper: Piperine enhances curcumin absorption.
  • Other spices – cinnamon, rosemary, thyme, oregano


Beans and lentils are packed with fiber, protein, folate, and iron. Doctors recommend them for arthritis patients because of their anti-inflammatory effects. Some examples are:

  • Soybeans
  • Kidney beans
  • Chickpeas
  • Lentils


Certain beverages can help ease arthritis too:

  • Green tea has antioxidants like epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG).
  • Coffee in moderation reduces inflammation markers like C-reactive protein (CRP).
  • Tart cherry juice provides pain relief.
  • Apple cider vinegar contains potassium which reduces swelling and pain.

A Balanced Diet is Key

There is no specific “arthritis diet”. The key is to have a balanced plate with a variety of wholesome anti-inflammatory foods that provide the vitamins, minerals, and nutrients you need, without triggering inflammation or swelling. Stay adequately hydrated and limit sodium intake too. While foods can complement medical treatment, they cannot replace it; so continue following your orthopedist-recommended plan.

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