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Why should you abstain from sugar when you have arthritis?

Musculoskeletal patients should choose foods that do not contain sugar, “hidden sugar” and other sweet foods to avoid the risk of inflammation.

People with arthritis are recommended to limit eating some foods that contain inflammatory substances, including sugar. The dietary research group at the American College of Rheumatology found that eating too much sugar or eating it regularly increases inflammatory problems in the body. This eating habit also causes other diseases.

According to the recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), adults can eat less than 10% of total calories per day of sugar. For example, a 2,000-calorie diet can have up to 200 calories (about 68 grams) of sugar.

The link between sugar and arthritis

The American College of Rheumatology team found that drinks like sugary sodas increase the risk of chronic inflammatory diseases. 24% of people with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) participating in the study reported desserts and soft drinks aggravate the condition. Meanwhile, their disease showed signs of improvement after eating 20 foods, including blueberries and spinach. Another study in the Journal of the American Academy of Nutrition found that regular consumption of sugary sodas also increased the risk of RA in women.

In patients with degenerative joint disease (OA), a diet high in sugary and fatty foods increases inflammation and causes obesity. Gout patients should also consider limiting a diet high in fructose like orange juice and soda. These drinks can cause monosodium urate crystals to build up in joints, tissues, and fluids inside the body, making the condition worse.

Therefore, people with arthritis should check the nutrition facts on the product label before using it. According to Harvard Health, when you read the packaging, the ingredients that end in “ose” are the ingredients that contain sugar. Also, pay attention to the “hidden sugars” found in some common foods such as pasta sauces, milk substitutes, ketchup, salad dressings, packaged oatmeal, cereals, etc. cups, sandwiches, canned soups and yogurts.

How to cut down on sugar

The British Rheumatology Foundation recommends that patients should reduce sugar intake, increase foods rich in antioxidants and vitamins A, C and E in the diet such as fruits and vegetables, lean protein, legumes, nuts, sugar-free drinks and enough water. These foods will help reduce the symptoms and progression of arthritis.

It can be difficult to change your diet at first, so make changes slowly and consistently, starting with foods with natural sugars. Patients should replace dessert with sweet fruit such as mango or watermelon, and eat less desserts and sweets.

Some diet sodas have low-calorie sweeteners. This is an artificial sweetener that contains little or no calories. There are five artificial sweeteners approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for use in arthritis patients’ meals: saccharin, acesulfame, aspartame, neotame, and sucralose. However, patients should consult their doctor before adding to the menu.

In general, eating sugar has many health risks, causing increased inflammation in joints, increasing the risk of obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. There are many types of added sugars of unknown origin in foods, so users should check the ingredients to calculate the amount of sugar they are consuming.

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