Arthritis affects more than 10 million people in the UK. The two most common types are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis – osteoarthritis is when the cartilage lining of the joint wears away and rheumatoid arthritis is when the body’s immune system targets affected joints. Painkillers are one form of treatment for arthritis, but some people look to more natural remedies. Particularly for osteoarthritis, experts recommend certain lifestyle changes, such as what you eat.
One food group which can prove troublesome to a person’s health and arthritis is saturated fat
One food group which can prove troublesome to a person’s health and arthritis is saturated fat.
Eating too much saturated fat can increase people’s ‘bad’ cholesterol levels.
Christine McKinney, a clinical dietician at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Centre, told Arthritis Foundation: “People with arthritis are more at risk for heart disease, so they need to be watching [their cholesterol levels].”
British Nutrition Foundation lists five different foods you should try to cut back on to reduce your saturated fat intake:
- Cream cheese
- Fatty meats
- Meat products
- Cakes and biscuits
While saturated fat in excess is bad for our health, unsaturated fats are beneficial.
The nutrition site continues: “Certain types of polyunsaturated fat may reduce general inflammation in the body and helps protect your heart.
“It is particularly important to protect your heart because heart disease is complication of certain types of arthritis (e.g rheumatoid arthritis).
It outlines some helpful tips to choose:
- Lower-fat dairy products, but keep watchful for high sugar content
- Reduced fat spreads
- Leaner meats
- Trim off visible fat
For osteoarthritis, exercise is one of the most important treatments, according to the NHS.
The health body advises: “Your physical activity should include a combination of exercises to strengthen your muscles and exercises to improve your general fitness.
“If osteoarthritis causes you pain and stiffness, you may think exercise will make your symptoms worse.
“However, regular exercise that keeps you active, builds up muscle and strengthens the joints usually helps to improve symptoms.
“Exercise is also good for losing weight, improving your posture and relieving stress, all of which will ease symptoms.”
Some research has proven certain supplements can help relieve arthritis symptoms.
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