Arthritis pain may slow you down, but it doesn’t have to be a barrier to losing weight and feeling better, according to everydayhealth.com.

Arthritis pain may slow you down, but it doesn’t have to be a barrier to losing weight and feeling better, according to everydayhealth.com.

 

More weight puts more pressure on your joints, and extra body fat increases inflammation in the body. Inflammation is associated with both osteoarthritis (when the cartilage between the bones at your joint wears
away) and inflammatory arthritis (arthritis that’s marked by swollen, warm joints), said Dr. Robert H. Carter MD, deputy director of the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases.

 

Plan Your Diet Around Inflammation-Fighting Foods

 

Choosing the right foods to add to your diet and getting some exercise can actually help reduce inflammation, bringing relief from arthritis symptoms while you lose weight.

 

Here’s what to put on your plate:

 

Fish - particularly fish high in omega-3 fatty acids - can help with joint stiffness and pain. Experts recommend eating at least 12 ounces of fish a week. Salmon has the highest amounts of omega-3 fats, but t other great
choices: canned light tuna (instead of albacore tuna that has a higher mercury content), herring, sardines, codfish, and tilapia.

 

Walnuts - like fish, walnuts are an excellent source of omega-3 fats and can be used in many creative ways like: stirring them into oatmeal or adding them to a salad.

 

Ground flaxseed or flaxseed oil - another good source of omega-3 fats. If you buy whole flaxseeds, be sure to put them through a coffee grinder first - the whole seed has a husk that won’t break down in your digestive tract. If you use the oil, use up to two tablespoons a day in salad dressing, a stir-fry dish, or on pasta.

 

Olive oil - because oil is high in calories, it’s best to use only two tablespoons a day, whether you choose olive oil or flaxseed oil. You can even find mayonnaise made with olive oil (or make your own in a blender!).

 

Trans-fatty-acid-free spread - look for butter alternatives that are free of trans and fatty acids - they’re a much better choice than hard-stick margarines that contain omega-6 fatty acids, which increase inflammation in
the body.

 

Fruits and vegetables - whether it’s blueberries on morning cereal or a salad at lunchtime, fruits and vegetables offer fiber, vitamins, and minerals that keep you healthy and help you lose weight. Some studies have even found that vegetarian-based diets help alleviate symptoms of arthritis while helping you lose weight.

 

Exercise to Ease Your Joints - important for weight loss and arthritis: Go for gentle movements and exercise that’s gentle on joints. A physical therapist can give you exercises that will help avoid putting too much
pressure on arthritic joints. Swimming is also a great activity for people with arthritis.

 

Do some resistance training - lift weights, use resistance machines at the gym, or use elastic bands as part of your exercise routine. This type of exercise builds muscle, improves balance, and keeps your active.

 

Strike a yoga pose - yoga is perfectly suited for people with stiff, painful joints.