What we eat plays a large role in how we feel – joint pain included. Food is intended to fuel us, provide us with nutrients, and, most of all, make us feel good. But sadly, eating the wrong foods can lead to health problems such as bad cholesterol, extra pounds, and joint pain.
Whether your joints hurt because of arthritis or just due to wear and tear, be aware of the following foods that make them hurt even more.
5 foods that increase joint pain
Inflammation is your body’s response to stimuli as a protective mechanism. But although inflammation has protective properties, it can also pose danger. Case in point, inflammation can lead to joint pain, which can have a negative impact on your life. If your joints ache day in and day out, you may want to steer clear of these foods.
Refined sugars: Studies have found that refined sugars are linked with higher inflammatory responses that lead to pain, swelling, and redness. Other research has found that consuming refined sugars is directly associated with acne. It is a good idea to watch your sugar intake and reduce the refined variety as much as possible – not just for your joints, but for your overall health, too.
Refined grains: Just like refined sugars, refined grains also lead to inflammation as they are quickly broken down upon consumption and turned into sugar. Furthermore, all the benefits of grains are often lost through the refining process, making them less nutritionally valuable. Therefore, skip the refined grains and stick with the whole ones instead.
Artificial sweeteners: See a pattern yet? Basically, if it isn’t natural, it will only cause you pain. Artificial sweeteners trigger an inflammatory response that can be higher in some individuals who are more prone than others. Artificial sweeteners have been shown to increase the body’s pH levels thus removing good bacteria from the gut.
Vegetable oils: You may have heard the ongoing news about oils, including vegetable ones. Oils like corn oil, canola oil, soy oil, and cottonseed oil have been found to create inflammation in the body, whereas oils like olive oil have been shown to actually reduce it. But don’t be confused, stick with extra virgin olive oil for optimal health, as even some olive oils can lead to harm.
Feedlot animals: Some animals are fed inflammation-causing grains and receive hormones, so when you consume their meat, an inflammatory response becomes triggered as well, contributing to joint pain. Stick with meat that has not been injected with hormones or antibiotics – organic is often best when it comes to reducing your joint pain.
So if you’ve been plagued by joint pain, take a close look at your diet to see if any of these inflammation-producing foods are playing a role.
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