Diet and arthritis pain
August 22, 2013
 by Gabe Mirkin, MD

A diet loaded with cooked vegetables and olive oil helps
reduce the pain, swelling and discomfort of rheumatoid
arthritis, according to a study from Harvard School of
Public Health.

Before this study, there was no really good evidence that
diet had anything to do with the course of rheumatoid
arthritis. One popular misconception is that the nightshade
vegetables, which include potatoes, tomatoes, eggplants and
peppers could make arthritis pain worse. There is no
scientific support for this theory.

Your body makes bad prostaglandins that cause swelling and
pain and good prostaglandins that prevent swelling and
pain. Aspirin and other arthritis pain medicines contain
drugs that block the bad prostaglandins. Cooked vegetables
and olive oils contain polyunsaturated and monounsaturated
oils that are used by your body to make the good
prostaglandins that block pain and swelling. They also are
full of antioxidants that help block pain and swelling.
Everyone should eat lots of vegetables, but this study
tells us that vegetables and olive oil are particularly
good for those who have arthritis.

1) A Linos, VG Kaklamani, E Kaklamani, Y Koumantaki, E
Giziaki, S Papazoglou, CS Mantzoros. Dietary factors in
relation to rheumatoid arthritis: a role for olive oil and
cooked vegetables. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition,
1999, Vol 70, Iss 6, pp 1077-1082 Mantzoros CS, Harvard
Univ, Sch Med, Beth Israel Deaconess Med Ctr, Div
Endocrinol, Boston,MA 02215 USA.

2) M Helgeland, E Svendsen, O Forre, M Haugen. Dietary
intake and serum concentrations of antioxidants in children
with juvenile arthritis. Clinical and Experimental
Rheumatology, 2000, Vol 18, Iss 5, pp 637-642Address Haugen
M, Oslo Natl Hosp, Ctr Rheumat Dis, Sognsvannsveien 20, N-
0027 Oslo, NORWAY