The Best & Worst Foods – For Arthritis. 

 March 9, 2021

By  Linda Rook


Anti-inflammatory foods are whole, plant-based foods; they are rich in healthy fats and phytonutrients. These foods also keep your sugar at a stable level.  Foods in this group will help you decrease your joint pains, lose weight and give you a healthy living.

The bottom line is that it is a win-win solution. Your painful joints will be better, and you will lose weight, which, in turn, will help with your joints, and you will get a healthy living. You may even be able to decrease those drugs that give  more side effects.

Food to avoid.

When you have arthritis, you get chronic inflammation in your joints, which can cause pain and damage to joint bones.

Research has found that eliminating certain foods and beverages could reduce your inflammation symptoms and improve your life.

Eight foods and beverages to avoid.

1. Sugar.

The first one is that you should reduce your sugar intake, especially if you have arthritis. Sugar is found in the following:

  • Sugary drinks like Soda or Coke.
  • Desserts, Yes sorry NO Pie and Ice cream.
  • Cheese.
  • Candy
  • Barbecue Sauce
  • Are just a few...
Avoid Sugar

2. Processed Foods.

Processed foods are high in interleukin-6 (IL-6), which is very high levels of inflammatory reaction.

Processed foods like fast food, Breakfast cereal and baked goods are very high in grain, added sugar, preservatives: Yes Sorry these are all NO NO foods. A study found that people with RA who ate high ultra-processed foods had an increased risk of heart disease.

No to Red Meat

3. Red Meat.

Red meat is also high in inflammatory marker like CRP (C-reactive protein), and as in processed foods, this also has IL-6.

There have been studies that show RA also found that red meat worsens the symptom. They found that red meat intake is a risk factor for those of you with inflammatory arthritis.

4. Gluten Foods.

Gluten products like wheat, barley and rye all link to increased inflammation of the body. Also, if you have celiac disease, you are at greater risk of getting RA. RA has a significantly high occurrence of celiac disease than anyone else.

I have OA, and since going gluten-free, I feel better within myself. It seems to ease arthritis symptoms.

5. Alcohol.

Alcohol can also increase the inflammation of arthritis. Especially if you have axial Spondylo-arthritis, the inflammation that affects the spine and sacroiliac joints, you may have found that alcohol increases the damaged spinal structure.

The intake of alcohol has shown that people with gout as frequent and severity attacks.

No Alcohol

6. Vegetable Oils.

You would have thought Omega oils would be right for you. But, studies have found that diets high in omega-6 fats and low in omega-3 fats could worsen the symptoms of OA & RA.

In some ways, these omega fats help with your health; its the imbalance ratio of the two could increase inflammation. The healthy balance should be to reduce the omega-6 like vegetable oils and increase your omega-3, rich in fatty fish.

7. High in Salt.

You should cut down on the salt if you have arthritis. Food with a high amount of salt includes:

Say NO To Pizza
  • Shrimp
  • Canned Soup.
  • Pizza.
  • Certain Cheeses
  • Dairy Products
  • Processed Meat
  • Fried and processed foods
  • And Numerous other Processed items.

Researchers found that arthritis made the inflammation worse with high sodium intake.

8. Advanced Glycation End Products (AGEs)

These AGEs are molecules that are created through a reaction between sugar and protein or sugar and fats. They are found naturally in uncooked animal foods and created through some cooking methods.

The richest dietary sources of AGEs are the ones that are high protein, high-fat animal foods.

The cooking procedures that are not a good way to cook are the following.

  • Frying.
  • Grilling.
  • Roasting.
  • Searing.
  • or boiling.

Do Not Fry
saucepan do not boil

I am sorry but;  when you have arthritis, you MUST avoid the following.

Say no to French Fries
  • Pan-fried or grilled Steak.
  • Roasted or Fried Chicken.
  • Broiled hot dogs.
  • American Cheese.
  • Margarine and Mayonnaise.
  • French Fries.
  • and much more...

When you have a high amount of AGEs in your body, it will send out oxidative stress, and your inflammation could worsen.

Instead of these high AGE foods, if you have arthritis, it's good to eat whole foods such as veggies, fruits, legumes and fish.

Best Foods To Eat if you have Arthritis.

Eating a healthy diet of anti-inflammatory foods will not cure arthritis, but it will manage the symptoms. Having arthritis is not as simple as 'Eat this; Don't Eat that'. Some types of arthritis have a chronic inflammatory condition that attacks your joints and tissues, which mean that you must watch what you eat.

First of all, you should talk to your doctor about the best treatments and lifestyle changes are for your condition.

This healthy diet will reduce pain and reduce the risk of the following:

  • Heart Disease & Stroke.
  • Alzheimer's.
  • Parkinson's.
  • And reduce Premature Death.
heart disease stroke.

A Diet that helps with Osteoarthritis.

Eating a balanced and nutritious diet may help you prevent more damage to the joints.  A specific diet can't cure arthritis, but balanced and nutritious supplements can improve your symptoms.

The following can help improve your OA.  Preventing more damage and reduce inflammation.

Some foods can reduce inflammation in your body and improve your symptoms. Eating antioxidants that include Vitamin A, C and E, helps to prevent further damage.

Reducing Cholesterol.

OA are susceptible to high cholesterol, so reducing this may improve your symptom. A correct diet can improve your cholesterol quickly.

Healthy weight.

Being overweight, your joints will have extra pressure; the excess fat is stored in the body and can cause more inflammation. Keeping a healthy weight with OA can lessen the symptoms. I know myself that maintaining a healthy weight can be very difficult for some of you, especially with medical conditions that can reduce mobility, such as OA.

Nine foods you can eat with arthritis.

Arthritis is a disease that causes pain, swelling, stiffness and inflammation of the joints. It can affect all people, such as age, gender and ethnic background.

1. Fish.

The omega-3 fatty acids in fish can help block the formation of compounds that causes inflammation in the body. These include fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, or sardines and should consume two to four times a week. You can have either fresh or canned fish; both make healthy choices.

Salmon is good for arthritis.
  • Salmon.
  • Sardines.
  • Herring.
  • Mackerel.
  • Anchovies

2. Herbs & Spices.

Spices are some of the best foods to take with inflammation, especially the ones with Polyphenol compounds. These polyphenols can block the pathway against inflammation. They are:

  • Curcumin
  • Garlic
  • Ginger and Tumeric.
  • Chilli Pepper
  • and much more...
Herbs and Spices

3. Fruit & Vegetables.

It is better for you if you pile on the fruit and veggies as they have phytonutrients, a chemical found in plants. These phytonutrients fight inflammation naturally.

The anti-inflammatory substance is found more in some like Broccoli, Cauliflower, Brussels, and bok choi.

Eating Greens.

The best leafy greens that are full of nutrients and decrease inflammation caused by arthritis is the Spinach. Spinach has found to have a high antioxidant and a plant component that reduces the inflammation of RA.

Adding a variety of anti-inflammatory foods to your diet,

Little by little, you will help your overall health and manage your arthritis pain better.


Berries can be eaten frozen or fresh (without added sugar). They are found to be rich in antioxidants and health benefits. The berries below all provide arthritis fighting ingredients; they include:

  • Blueberries.
  • Blackberries.
  • Strawberries.
  • Cranberries.
  • And boysenberries.


Grapes has several compounds that are beneficial to treat arthritis. For example, the skin contains an antioxidant called resveratrol, which helps with inflammation.

Apples and Pomegranates.

Apples are another fruit that is high in antioxidants and a great source of fibre; they also curb your appetite until the next mealtime.

Pomegranate is a kind of berry fruit and is rich in tannins. Tannins fight arthritis inflammation; you could add them to a salad or stir them into yoghurt as a healthy snack.

4. Nuts (Not for anyone with a nut allergy).

Researchers have found that any type of nuts fights inflammation. You can pick your favourite nuts - Walnuts, Peanuts, Cashews, Almonds, Pistachios, Flaxseed ,whichever is your favourite

Have them different from munching on them; you can spread nut butter on an apple for a snack or crumble some nuts over a chicken or fish.

Nuts are anti-inflammatory and high in protein, low in saturated fats and don't contain cholesterol.

5. Cooking Oil.

Olive oil is rich in Oleocanthal, a phenolic compound similar to anti-inflammatory that you see in ibuprofen.

To find the best possible impact, find Virgin or extra-virgin olive oil.

6. Beans.

Beans are another way of getting your inflammation down. The below list is also rich in fibre.

Red Kidney Beans
  • Black Beans.
  • Kidney Beans.
  • Lentils.
  • And more...

They are rich in phytonutrients as well as fibre. Try eating these with veggies, dip the vegetables in a bean-based dip like hummus, or you could put a can of beans into a salad or even soup.

7. Whole Grains.

Whole grains - made from grains with all three parts (germ, bran and endosperm) unbroken; are considered anti-inflammatory. The people who ate more unbroken whole grains had lower levels of inflammatory compounds.

8. Salsa.

Salsa is another good way of getting your daily increase of vitamin C, fibre and antioxidants.

9. Dark Chocolate.

YES! dark chocolate eases inflammation. But, it should be 70% or higher of cocoa. The higher the content of cocoa, the lower amount of sugar that is in the chocolate.

Dark Chocolate, yes you can eat


Diets can have a significant role in arthritis inflammation and severity symptoms. As shown above these various foods that help with inflammation can also help to lose weight and overall health and wellness.

Two types of diets can help with arthritis: the 'Mediterranean Diet and 'Dash Diet'. I shall look into these in more detail in another blog.

I hope this blog has helped you to find the right foods to eat with your chronic inflammation.

If you have any worries about your Arthritis, just leave a question and I will get back to you as soon as possible.

Linda Rook

Linda is now retired and has suffered from Osteoarthritis for about 40+ years.  She struggled with her weight until she found the correct one that also helped with her arthritic pain.  Linda was in terrible pain until the physician thought her right hip needed replacement. 

Now Linda has an artificial right hip, which has left her with the left leg shorter than the right.  Therefore, her spine is now wonky, and has arthritis of the lower back, also it seems to be going all over the body, her pain is now in the knees, elbow, wrist, fingers and both hips.

Linda now spends her days writing information to help others with the same conditions, so they do not suffer like Linda.

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