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Nutrition Tip: A Healthy Diet for Arthritis Prevention

Various fruits in a bowl

Recommendations on ways to help prevent arthritis:

The key ingredient to diet and osteoarthritis is achieving a healthy weight. Excess weight puts stress on joints and causes pain, especially on knees. Even losing a little weight can reduce the risk of developing osteoarthritis.

Try these small changes to lose weight:

1) Eat a smaller portion at each meal.

2) Substitute a higher calorie snack with a fresh fruit.

3) Swap a sugary beverage like soda with water.

4) Start a food diary to help put you in control of your eating habits.

5) Try this meal planning tactic: section your plate in quarters and filling one with a whole grain (such as brown rice), another with a lean protein (such as chicken or fish) and the last two with non-starchy vegetables or fruit. This method helps with portion control and favors nutrition-rich, low-fat foods.

A Mediterranean style diet has been linked to a reduced risk of some forms of arthritis, especially rheumatoid arthritis. The foundation for this diet includes legumes, a variety of fruits and vegetables, nuts, whole grains, lean protein (especially fish) and small amounts of low-fat dairy. The main fat source of this diet is olive oil, which is very low in saturated fat and high in antioxidants.

This meal plan provides fiber, minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants, and limits processed foods and those high in sugars. A favorite Mediterranean meal of mine is a hearty bowl of lentil soup with a small piece of crispy whole grain bread and olives, and a fruit for dessert.

Topics: Nutrition
The information provided in this blog by HSS and our affiliated physicians is for general informational and educational purposes, and should not be considered medical advice for any individual problem you may have. This information is not a substitute for the professional judgment of a qualified health care provider who is familiar with the unique facts about your condition and medical history. You should always consult your health care provider prior to starting any new treatment, or terminating or changing any ongoing treatment. Every post on this blog is the opinion of the author and may not reflect the official position of HSS. Please contact us if we can be helpful in answering any questions or to arrange for a visit or consult.