Good Foods for Arthritis

Good Foods for Arthritis

So, if you have read our report about foods that are bad for arthritis it is natural that you would also want to know which foods are going to help you. 

In general, the first article focused on “bad foods” that can increase arthritis pain. So, it is good to know what not to eat. Here, we will focus on foods that are good for your arthritis. If you can help yourself by changing a few eating habits you are helping yourself.

The list of good foods for OA

Let’s first understand what we mean by “arthritis.” It is a group of diseases that involves inflammation, stiffness in joints and pain. One is a disease called Osteoarthritis. Rheumatoid Arthritis is another. And, autoimmune disorders are a third. There are others but the food issue remains the same. And, the entire group of diseases is generally called “arthritis.” Of course, arthritis means pain to most sufferers.

You can be any age and suddenly you are fighting one of these diseases. Your sex and ethnic origins are also not a factor. In brief, anyone can be subjected to these painful and difficult diseases.

So, if you suffer from these symptoms, you want to know which foods are going to help you. Let’s lay out the list in order. Please note that these appear to be the best foods for fighting arthritis.

  • Fish

Not just any fish here. The ones you need to eat are “fatty fish.” That would be salmon;

sardines; mackerel; and, trout. The reason? These fish have a high-concentration of Omega-3. Of course, Omega-3 has powerful anti-inflammatory qualities. And, these fish also contain Vitamin D. Vitamin D is also associated with anti-inflammatory effects. As you likely know by now, “inflammation equals pain.” The general recommendation is that you eat fatty fish twice a week to reap the benefits. You should experience a reduction in both pain and stiffness if you do. That is what the clinical trials say. You may have to wait a short time for the pain to subside but it should.

  • Garlic

Garlic offers a “mother load” of benefits for arthritis sufferers. Once again, very strong anti-inflammatory properties so less pain. One unusual clinical trial studied nearly 1,100 sets of twins and found that ingestion of garlic reduced the incidence of hip Osteoarthritis. And, once again the conclusion reached was that garlic offered very strong anti-inflammatory properties. There are also findings that eating garlic reduces the risk of Osteoarthritis altogether. That is certainly a powerful conclusion.

  • Ginger

This writer was fascinated when he found research on Ginger. Normally, it is used as a spice for soups and sweets. At least once clinical study found that using ginger extract with OA patients caused a significant improvement in their knee pain. Furthermore, other studies have found that ginger has anti- inflammatory characteristics. Of course, inflammation is our enemy here

  • Broccoli

It is widely-known that Broccoli is one of the healthiest foods in the world. And, once again, it is found to be anti-inflammatory. This was found in lab studies and it has been borne out in clinical trials as well.

  • Nuts

There are four nuts that you may want to consider eating if you suffer from arthritis. The first and most important is Walnuts. Walnuts are chock full of Omega-3 and are filled with anti-inflammatory compounds. There have been over a dozen studies confirming this. Three others known to reduce arthritis symptoms are almonds, chia seeds, and flaxseed.

  • Berries of all kinds

Berries are loaded with vitamins, nutrients and antioxidants. It is no wonder that they demonstrate a decrease in inflammation. Berries also contain quercetin and rutin. In animal studies, both produced results indicating a reduction in inflammatory markers. There it is again. Losing inflammation.

It doesn’t matter which kind of berries you prefer but it is worth mentioning that the darker the color of the berry; the greater the antioxidant qualities. And, it is antioxidants that reduce arthritis symptoms.

  • Spinach

It looks like Popeye was onto something. Spinach also contains parts that may decrease arthritis-related inflammation.

In general, it has been found that the more fruits and vegetables you eat, the greater the reduction of inflammation. Especially spinach* which is rich in antioxidants and plant compounds that reduce inflammation. 

*Spinach has a very high content of antioxidant kaempferol.  Kaempferol has decreased inflammation markers and significantly, in one study it prevented the progression of OA. (Osteoarthritis) That lab study tested Kaempferol in arthritic cartilage cells.

  • Grapes

Grapes are antioxidant and loaded with nutrients. As well, they are anti- inflammatory. Also, grapes contain Resveratrol which is beneficial to arthritis sufferers.

  • Olive Oil versus Fish Oil

Olive oil looks to bode well as an anti-inflammatory for arthritis sufferers and, against the disease in particular. In animal studies, the progression of arthritis was slowed by Olive Oil. That is most impressive.

In a clinical study of RA patients, Fish Oil or Olive Oil was given to the participants. The inflammatory markers at the end of the study showed that Fish Oil showed less inflammation than the Olive Oil by 2-17%. Those taking Olive Oil had lessened their markers by around 38% while the Fish Oil group was between 40-55%.

This writer thinks we can conclude that both Olive Oil and Fish Oil have major health benefits and may offer some hope for reducing arthritis symptoms. The studies go further and state that ingesting Olive Oil may actually reduce your risk of arthritis. Further, at least one animal study concluded that the progression of arthritis was slowed by the use of Olive Oil. Amazing. Simply amazing.

  • Acai and Pomegranate

These fruits normally ingested as a juice in the U.S. have also shown promise for arthritis sufferers.

Acai juices

Acai has been touted for use by arthritis sufferers. There is no doubt that it is a powerful antioxidant so of course, it should have some anti-inflammatory qualities. Beyond that, there is not much to say. It may be a good tool in your arthritis arsenal.

One popular Acai drink product was placed into testing by the producers. To set the stage they tested range of motion (ROM) in all joints of the participants. At the end of three months, 55% of the joints at the beginning of the study showed a 24% limit on ROM. After three months, those same joints “showed improvement.”*

*This writer finds it odd that they do not mention “which” of the joints were arthritic. So, their findings that   joints “showed some improvement” is not terribly significant. How much improvement?

The makers of this product also claimed “a significant pain reduction and improved ROM.” However, they qualified that by limiting the improvements as being “only in the neck; low back; and lower body.” Apparently, antioxidant quality also improved. Again, no statistics on these findings. For example, how much did ROM improve?

Pomegranate Juice

Pomegranate has a very long history that includes a great many clinical studies. It has been around for a much longer period of time than say, Acai. So, is it a winner for arthritis sufferers?

The clinical findings on Pomegranate hold some hope for RA sufferers. The findings were that inflammation was reduced as well as joint pain. You can take your Pomegranate in juice form; as an extract; or, as a whole fruit. The studies concluded that if using a juice form, 8 oz. daily may be the best dose for results.

And, how about Osteoarthritis? (OA) In a stunning 2016 study, this was the actual title of the study:

Intake of Pomegranate Prevents the Onset of Osteoarthritis: Molecular Evidences” 

According to the researchers, this finding was very definitive. In part, this is what they found: (Paraphrasing to eliminate highly-technical terminology)

The study used oil taken from pomegranate seeds (rich in punicic acid) and it has anti-arthritic activities. Experiments on animals suffering from arthritis (OA) tested with these oils concluded that the “consumption of pomegranate seed oil in the diet increased bone mineral density and it inhibited pro- inflammatory activity.”

They also studied side effects of OA drugs; NSAIDs and corticosteroids and concluded correctly that there can be severe side effects. Not true with pomegranate in all forms as they found absolutely no side effects.”

That is pretty amazing and certainly, more trials will be needed to further substantiate these findings.


And finally, we have this:

  • Tart Cherry Juice*

* from the Prunus Cerasus Tree

This juice is absolutely loaded with nutrients. And, it offers up some powerful health benefits. As well, tart cherry juice just may assist with arthritis as well.

One study provided 16 oz. daily of unsweetened tart cherry juice to participants (as opposed to the placebo). And, the findings were that arthritis symptoms were significantly reduced. And, that inflammation was reduced considerably. A smaller study found that “inflammation markers had fallen.”


It is difficult to deny the benefits of consuming a healthy when you suffer from arthritis. And, we said this before and will say it again.


Be smart. Eat right. Lose pain.