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Foods to Avoid for Psoriatic Arthritis Patients
Psoriasis arthritis is an inflammatory condition that mainly affects individuals with a skin condition known as psoriasis. It causes symptoms such as red itchy and inflamed patches on the skin. The symptoms of psoriatic arthritis begin with itchy, red, inflamed skin, especially the skin found around the joints. Gradually, it progresses into inflamed joints, pain at the site of inflammation, swollen fingers and toes, and the red joints for those with hyper-pigmented skin.
Conventionally, the treatment of arthritis is anti-inflammatory drugs like Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory agents (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen and steroids like dexamethasone. However, recent research has indicated that to effectively combat inflammatory diseases adequately, dieting and exercise are an essential component. Medical experts encourage individuals with arthritis to incorporate a healthy meal plan with foods that reduce the inflammatory process or mitigate it. The following foods should be avoided in individuals with psoriatic arthritis:
1. Fatty red meat A cohort study conducted in 2017 revealed that frequent consumption of red meat is associated with weight gain. Increased body weight causes detrimental health effects for people with arthritis as it increases the demand for already inflamed joints to support the weight. Additionally, fatty red meat contains saturated fats, which tend to delay healing and worsen inflammation. Consequently, the symptoms will exacerbate over time.
2. Processed foods Processed foods like bacon, dried fruits, canned vegetables, and margarine contain trans fats. Trans fats are notorious in the initiation of inflammatory processes by inducing cytokines production. Therefore, excessive consumption of processed foods will worsen the symptoms in individuals with psoriasis arthritis. In conjunction, fried foods like fried chicken contain a lot of trans fats. They should be avoided in individuals with psoriasis arthritis.
3. Dairy products Research conducted in 2017 revealed that dairy products contained certain types of proteins that tend to trigger or worsen the inflammatory process. To support this argument, dairy products, especially the unprocessed ones, contain high levels of saturated fats, and as earlier stated, saturated fats tend to exacerbate inflammation. In addition, dairy products are associated with allergies and lactose intolerance, which triggers the immune system by causing inflammation. Cumulatively, this could lead to adverse side effects in individuals with psoriasis arthritis. Therefore, medical experts advise against excessive consumption of milk and related dairy products in individuals who manifest symptoms of arthritis.
4. Alcohol Excessive alcohol consumption is associated with various health hazards; particularly, it causes extensive liver damage. The liver is one of the primary organs used in detoxifying the human body; hence when the liver is diseased, it tends to become less effective in the detoxification process. Therefore, the aggravating factors will continue to cause havoc throughout the human body, manifesting as inflammation. For individuals with psoriasis arthritis, their symptoms will worsen over time.
5. Refined sugars Refined sugars and carbohydrates contain a high content of AGEs. AGEs are Advanced Glycation End-products, which are considered toxic. As the body tries to detoxify AGEs, it produces cytokines, which are second messengers to inflammatory processes. The result will be worsened symptoms for individuals with psoriasis arthritis.
Conclusively, treatment alone is not enough to alleviate the symptoms of psoriasis arthritis. It should be coupled with eating a healthy diet and frequent exercising.