If you have joint pain or one of the many forms of diagnosed arthritis, then it may be time to investigate what's going in on in your gut, along with adding some gut healing foods to your diet.
In the last couple of years there has been a lot of talk about how the bacteria in our gut (referred to as our microbiome) effects our health. Trials and research continue today to further understand how inflammation in the gut and an imbalance of gut bacteria, along with other gut issues, can result in sickness and diseases. One topic of debate is whether you can treat arthritis by adjusting the bacteria in your gut. According to an article on the Arthritis Foundation website many scientists are beginning to think so!
As research continues and connections are made, an important thing to consider whether you have arthritis now or as a preventative measure, is to look at your diet and consider adding some gut healing foods.
Well known Australian nutritionist, Cyndi O-Meara, dedicates a page to arthritis on her website Changing Habits. She believes diet plays a major role in arthritis noting The latest research suggests that initiation of autoimmune conditions like arthritis can stem from the gut. The two major mechanisms that are responsible for this are (1) Leaky Gut and (2) Lack of beneficial bacteria, or an overgrowth of pathogenic or bad bacteria. Recent studies are discovering links between certain types of bacteria and conditions such as arthritis.
So what to do now as the debate continues.consider these 5 additions to your daily diet that could help your gut and as a result your joints.
Start your day with Apple Cider Vinegar
Go for organic and unfiltered. You only need 1-2 tablespoons a day. Dilute with water, you can add some lemon juice or dash of honey to to soften the bitterness. Best in the morning and before a meal to aid digestion. So many other health benefits too!
Add some fermented foods to your meal
Sauerkraut, kimchi, miso, tempeh, fermented tofu, pickles, and pickled items such as pickled beets, radish, garlic, and cucumbers can be added to meals. The probiotic bacteria in your gut will predigest these fermented foods making nutrients easier to absorb. The fermented probiotic drink Kombucha has also become popular and readily available if you don't have time to make your own. Grab a bottle rather than a soft drink or juice now and then.
Don't forget a daily dose of leafy greens and cruciferous vegetables
Vegetables like broccoli, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, cabbage, and bok choy contain a family of vital nutrients called glucosinolates that are potent polyphenols (see below) particularly useful for lowering inflammation in the intestines.
Eat foods rich in polyphenols
Polyphenols are plant compounds that have many health benefits, including reductions in blood pressure, inflammation, cholesterol levels and oxidative stress. Good sources of polyphenols include blueberries, broccoli, onions, almonds, green tea, grape skins and red wine, cocoa and dark chocolate. (Yes that's not a typo wine and chocolate!)
Add foods rich in Omega 3
Omega-3s have an anti-inflammatory effect on the body and in the gut. Enjoy more fatty fish (salmon, tuna), take fermented cod liver oil, snack on walnuts and throw some chia seeds in your smoothies or over yoghurt.
If you are taking Rose-Hip Vital then its anti-inflammatory properties will already be helping the inflammation in your gut. Trials using Rose-Hip Vital have also been show to help relieve symptoms of Crohns Disease which effects the gut and intestines.
Want to read more about the gut and arthritis connection, here are some articles we found:
Keen to take some bigger steps to improve your gut health? Check out these wellness experts who offer gut healing diets: