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Foods Seniors with Arthritis Should Include in Their Diet

Foods Seniors with Arthritis Should Include in Their Diet

Foods Seniors with Arthritis Should Include in Their Diet

Arthritis is a widespread condition that impacts individuals across all age groups. Contrary to the common belief that it solely affects the elderly, arthritis is not inherently a consequence of aging. It can lead to irreversible alterations in the joints. However, older adults can mitigate joint inflammation by incorporating specific foods into their diets.

The term “arthritis” encompasses a broad spectrum of joint-related ailments characterized by pain or disease, rather than referring to a singular condition. Over 100 distinct types of arthritis and related disorders exist. According to the Arthritis Foundation, arthritis stands as a primary cause of disability in the U.S.

Age escalates the likelihood of developing certain arthritis types, such as osteoarthritis. Rheumatoid arthritis, an autoimmune and inflammatory form of the disease, may stem from stress or viral infections in genetically susceptible individuals. Other forms include infectious arthritis and gout.

Prevention of joint issues can be partly achieved through regular physical activity, maintaining a healthy weight, and limiting inflammatory food items like red meats and highly processed products. Alternatively, adopting a diet rich in healthy foods can diminish the severity of the disease.

While arthritis remains incurable, achieving remission—characterized by minimal or absent disease activity—is a feasible objective for many older adults. Adherence to the Mediterranean diet, along with medication and other interventions, significantly contributes to reducing inflammation and pain associated with arthritis.

Certain foods, as listed here, are endowed with antioxidants, anti-inflammatory, and analgesic qualities that can alleviate the pain and inflammation seniors with arthritis often endure. A variety of beverages, seafood, fruits, oils, spices, nuts, and vegetables have been identified as beneficial in soothing arthritis symptoms.

1. Green Tea

Green tea contains a natural antioxidant that stops the inflammatory chemicals in the body that contribute to arthritis. The mild beverage may also prevent cartilage from breaking down, thereby preserving the joints. Aim for two servings a day and use tea bags rather than powdered mixes.

2. Seafood

Certain types of seafood, specifically tuna, salmon, mackerel, and sardines, are rich in the Omega-3 fatty acids that can decrease inflammation. Try to eat two or more three- to four-ounce servings of fish per week. A practical alternative to seafood is fish oil supplements.

3. Berries

A commonly available power food that fights arthritis-related inflammation is the berry. Fruits, such as blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, and blackberries, are rich in antioxidants and contain anthocyanins, which reduce inflammation. Eat a variety of berries, frozen or fresh, throughout the week.

4. Dark Leafy Greens

Anti-inflammatory vegetables include spinach, kale, broccoli, and collard greens. Containing an abundance of Vitamins C and E, leafy greens help the body produce collagen (to aid in joint flexibility) and protect the body against pro-inflammatory molecules. Gradually add these foods to the diet.

5. Nuts

Nuts, being rich in Vitamin E, calcium, fiber, magnesium, zinc, and Omega-3 fats, have anti-inflammatory effects. Munch on almonds, hazelnuts, pecans, pistachios, peanuts, and walnuts. Nuts are heart healthy, which is a benefit for seniors with rheumatoid arthritis, since they have a higher risk for heart disease.

6. Olive Oil

Extra virgin olive oil contains a plentiful amount of heart healthy fats, like Omega-3 and Omega-6 acids, as well as oleocanthal, which offers benefits similar to anti-inflammatory drugs. Consume two to three tablespoons of olive oil daily, instead of vegetable and corn oils, to improve arthritic symptoms.

7. Whole Grains

Whole grains are a healthy source of filling fiber, which helps seniors maintain a healthy weight. Fiber-rich foods have been shown in some studies to reduce blood levels of CRP, an inflammatory marker. Eat six ounces of brown rice, quinoa, or other whole grain per day.

8. Garlic and Onions

Some forms of arthritic pain may be relieved by consuming garlic and onions, which contain anti-inflammatory chemicals. Try mixing salsa into a daily diet, as it contains not only onions, but tomatoes and other vegetables. Eating salsa boosts a senior’s intake of Vitamin C, fiber, and antioxidants.

9. Ginger and Turmeric

Like garlic and onions, ginger and turmeric are known to have chemicals with anti-inflammatory properties. Sprinkle these spices on foods and beverages for limited health benefits. Alternately, seniors living with arthritis can get a healthy dose of these spices by taking supplements.

10. Soybeans

If your senior loved ones do not like to eat fish, they can get the same Omega-3 fatty acids from soybeans. Foods that consist of soybeans, such as tofu and edamame, are high in protein and fiber and low in fat in addition to having anti-inflammatory qualities.

11. Low-Fat Dairy

Seniors that keep low-fat dairy foods in their diet such as milk, cheese, and yogurt get ample calcium and vitamin D which helps increase bone strength and support the immune system. If your senior loved one cannot eat dairy, the dark leafy green vegetables mentioned above are a good alternative source of calcium and vitamin D.

12. Citrus

Citrus fruits contain vitamin C which helps prevent inflammatory arthritis and keep joints affected by osteoarthritis healthy. Seniors can eat citrus fruits, such as oranges, lemons, limes, and grapefruits, or make fresh juice from these fruits to get enough vitamin C.

Home Health Care Hinsdale Illinois

The Mediterranean diet, renowned for its health benefits, plays a crucial role in combating inflammation, specifically in the joints. This diet not only helps with weight management—which in turn alleviates joint pain—but also offers protection against stroke, cancer, and helps in lowering blood pressure due to its anti-inflammatory and disease-fighting properties. Incorporating these nutritious foods into the daily regimen is particularly beneficial for seniors, enhancing joint health and managing disease effectively.

Arthritis, with its accompanying pain and inflammation, transforms daily activities into challenges. For seniors afflicted with arthritis, tasks as simple as cooking can become daunting. Recognizing this, Assisting Hands Home Care provides essential in-home assistance, preparing balanced meals that mitigate the symptoms of arthritis, thus improving quality of life.

As a leader in home care, our mission at Assisting Hands Home Care is to assist seniors in maintaining their daily routines with dignity. Our compassionate caregivers give those suffering from arthritis or other ailments the support needed to continue living independently and comfortably in their own homes.

Our elder care services at Assisting Hands Home Care are extensive, encompassing non-medical support like personal hygiene assistance, transportation, meal preparation, grocery shopping, medication reminders, light housekeeping, and companionship. This companionship service is particularly significant for seniors, as it alleviates feelings of social isolation and loneliness.

At Assisting Hands Home Care, our approach to companion care involves forging strong, supportive relationships with the seniors we care for. We engage in conversation, play board games, encourage engagement in hobbies, and accompany them on safe outings. Moreover, our caregivers actively promote physical activity by walking with seniors, contributing to their overall well-being.

Senior care from Assisting Hands Home Care is a priceless investment in the well-being of older adults. When you are ready to start elder care, choose our home care agency. We serve Downers Grove, Hinsdale, Burr Ridge, Lyons, Indian Head Park, McCook, Hodgkins, Countryside, Willow Springs, Palisades, La Grange Highlands, Clarendon Hills, Brookfield, Western Springs,  Darien, La Grange,  Oak Brook, Willowbrook, Illinois, and its surrounding communities with dedication. Call us at  (630) 407-1932 to schedule an in-home consult today.