What we eat and what we put into our bodies has a profound effect on our overall health. Not only will our diet impact things like weight and complexion, but it can actually have an effect on joints as well. For those with chronic joint pain, you may be surprised to learn that nutrition is a big factor in the health and performance of your joints. But how does one affect the other? What foods should you be avoiding, and what foods should you seek to include in your diet? Read on for the answers to these questions and more!
How does nutrition affect my joints?
This is a valid question. At first glance, it may not seem likely that one has anything to do with the other. But if you look a little closer, at a molecular level, there’s a clear cause-and-effect. Certain foods contain a compound that triggers the immune system’s natural response.
Inflammation, while often uncomfortable and inconvenient, is your body’s way of fighting off potentially harmful substances. It’s a defense mechanism that keeps you safe and healthy. Unfortunately, there are some foods that tend to aggravate your immune system, leading to excess inflammation in your joints.
What foods should I avoid?
- Processed sugar is one of the most common offenders when it comes to inflammatory substances. Reduce your sugar consumption by finding alternative sweeteners.
- Gluten sensitivity has become a national issue, and the substances found in gluten can cause inflammation in the joints.
- Alcohol is perfectly fine in moderation. But excessive alcohol consumption can lead to inflammation.
- Saturated Fats. Saturated fats can be found in grains, meats, and dairy products. Full-fat products can trigger an inflammatory response from your immune system.
What foods should I include in my diet?
There are many foods that actually have anti-inflammatory effects when included in a well-balanced nutrition plan. Medical experts recommend following the Mediterranean diet for best results. Below are some examples of anti-inflammatory foods to add to your daily meals:
- Olive oil
- Dark chocolate
- Green tea
Chiropractic Care for Holistic Wellness
Because of the close connection between diet and musculoskeletal health, chiropractic care often includes some level of nutrition assistance. Ask your chiropractor for advice when it comes to exercise, stretches, and diet. You’ll be well-equipped to fight off chronic joint pain in no time. To schedule a free consultation, contact us here at Wirth Chiropractic today!