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Going Vegetarian for Pain Management

Incorporating more fresh fruits and veggies into our diets is something we all should aim to do. If we are eating fruits and vegetables, we’re getting more beneficial nutrients, while also avoiding foods that are processed and high in nutrients we’re hoping to monitor like sugar and carbohydrates.

The Skinny on Inflammation

A healthy body has some inflammation that needs to be maintained, but when there’s an issue and something is out of whack, such as an autoimmune disorder like celiac disease or diabetes, over inflammation can result. Anti-inflammatory medications work by blocking enzymes that lead to swelling and pain, but wouldn’t it be great if we could achieve this through special diet choices?

Fruits and Vegetables (and their byproducts) that Fight Inflammation: 

01 Celery - This crispy veggie proves to have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits that contribute to improvement of cholesterol levels and blood pressure. Celery is also high in potassium which helps in the removal of toxins.

02 Olive Oil - Opt for the bottle that says “extra virgin” as it’s been through less refining and processing and ultimately has more nutrients as other olive oils. Arthritis.org recommends 2-3 tablespoons per day.

03 Cherries and Red/Purple Fruits - Anthocyanins found in cherries and other red and purple fruits like strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and blackberries are known to have anti-inflammatory effects as well as contribute to longevity, cardiovascular health and cancer prevention.

04 Citrus - Fruits such as oranges, grapefruits and limes that are rich in vitamin C help prevent anti-inflammatory arthritis and maintain healthy joint function. One medium orange contains 100% of the recommended daily dose of vitamin C.

05 Vegetables with Vitamin K (broccoli, spinach, lettuce, kale, cabbage) - Other research suggests eating foods packed with vitamin K dramatically reduces inflammation markers in the blood. Aim for between 5 and 13 servings per day. (This equates to about 2 ½ to 6 ½ cups per day).

06 Beets - According to research, inflammatory conditions are also linked to magnesium deficiency, which contributes to the lack of absorption of calcium. When calcium builds up in the body, unwanted inflammation occurs. Beets are notorious for repairing cells and fighting inflammation in high doses.

07 Pineapple - Pineapple, because of its high vitamin C content, helps to ward off disease, but did you know that it also has an enzyme called bromelain, that stops blood platelets from sticking together? This decreases the chance of heart attacks and strokes, medical issues stemming from inflammation.

Want help eating healthier and managing symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis? For a limited time, you can get a year of membership with Pack Health (and a complimentary kit with tools to help you track things like the foods you eat and how you feel) at no cost to you. Sign up here.