I’ve started to get some joint pain as I enter my 40s and was curious whether it might be something in my diet or just an age-related thing.
I like to eat peas, and beans quite often, and so I wondered whether legumes are contributing to this pain and whether they would be bad for people with arthritis.
As a general rule, medical doctors agree that legumes are not bad for arthritis.
Legumes are high in fiber, which is a natural anti-inflammatory.
One caveat is that fried foods are bad for arthritis, and therefore fried legumes are bad for arthritis.
Certain types of cooking oils have been linked to making arthritic pain worse, so below I will explain what foods are the most inflammatory and make arthritis worse, as well as, an explanation of the different foods that you should and shouldn’t eat for arthritis pain.
What Are the 10 Most Inflammatory Foods?
Since legumes aren’t inflammatory, what foods are, and which ones should you avoid?
Medical professionals say the following foods are the most inflammatory:
- Red meat
- Dairy products – cheese, milk, butter, yoghurt
- Corn oil, sunflower oil, safflower oil, peanut oil, soy oils
- Excessive salt
- Excessive sugar
- Fried or grilled foods
- Refined grains such as white bread, pastry, pasta
Therefore, you should aim to eat only a very small amount of these, and aim to get most of your calories from foods that are naturally anti-inflammatory.
The good news is, you can still enjoy everything you ate before, you simply need to make some adjustments if you’re recovering from arthritis.
Many nutritionists and medical professionals are of the opinion that changing your diet so that you don’t consume any inflammatory foods can reduce the pain caused by arthritis.
It has also been noted that you can develop poor digestive health as a result of consuming the above foods that can lead to poor uptake of nutrients which makes arthritis and joint pain worse.
But, when you consume a diet that is high in all the beneficial nutrients such as fiber your digestive system will recover and return to normal function.
Increasing the beneficial nutrients your body absorbs and increasing their availability in your body.
Joint mobility exercises
As you age your joints naturally need to be moved in various angles to maintain range of motion and eliminate pain.
Hobbies such as yoga, and pilates have become very popular because they are a fun way to exercise and the various poses and exercises keep the joints in good health as an added bonus.
Swimming can also be fantastic to alleviate arthritis pain.
What Foods Fight Inflammation Naturally?
Now that you know what foods you should avoid when you have arthritis, you’re probably curious about what foods you should eat more of, and which ones naturally fight inflammation?
Certain recipes come to mind when I look at that list.
A fish salad topped with pine nuts. Or a vegetable smoothie with ginger.
I think pretty much everyone loves chocolate. And dark chocolate has more cocoa in it, which is naturally high in antioxidants.
The main concern with eating chocolate is that you don’t consume too much sugar.
1 generous portion of chocolate, say 8 cubes/squares has about 30% of the recommended daily sugar intake.
Do Legumes Cause Arthritis?
If you eat inflammatory foods you can make the pain from arthritis worse.
But, I was curious whether legumes can cause arthritis? Here’s what I found.
Legumes do not cause arthritis.
Legumes are recommended by medical professionals as a food that naturally fights inflammation.
Therefore, eating legumes can help with the symptoms of arthritis.
Legumes also have a range of other health benefits.
Legumes are naturally high in fiber, protein, and other nutrients such as vitamin-b9.
I researched how healthy legumes are and discussed what the healthiest legumes are and whether it’s OK to eat legumes everyday.
Find it here – How Healthy Are Legumes.
Are Black Beans Inflammatory?
Blackbeans are quite delicious and are a key ingredient in many Latin-style dishes.
But, are they inflammatory?
Black beans are not inflammatory.
Black beans help to reduce inflammation and are recommended as a food to consume to reduce inflammation.
Other legumes such as peas and lentils are also not inflammatory and legumes are a good source of nutrients.
Black beans are sold in cans, or in their dried form where they can be kept for a very long time.
Where they last for 2 to 3 years in cool dry conditions. Black beans can also be grown in pots or in the garden.
Black bean farmers estimate that a 10 ft by 10ft (area of black beans would produce approximately 1 to 2 pounds (2.5 to 5 kg) of beans.
Are Eggs an Inflammatory Food?
Eggs are great for breakfast, or as a snack at any time during the day.
Since eggs can be fried I wanted to know whether eggs are inflammatory. Here’s what I found..
Eggs are one of the best foods for inflammation according to medical professionals.
However, it’s best to consume them boiled.
Free-range eggs have also been shown to have higher levels of beneficial nutrients when compared to cage eggs.
The number of beneficial nutrients in free-range eggs can be up to 7 times higher as those found in cage eggs.
So, it’s worth making the effort.
In stores, I generally find free-range eggs are about 20% more expensive.
But, overall free-range eggs are fairly average in price when compared to other foods.
Some people don’t mind eating raw eggs, and it’s a very fast breakfast.
Others find it too repulsive.
Do beans aggravate arthritis?
Beans are versatile and are a treasured crop in many different countries.
Both for their nutritional qualities, and the fact that they keep for a very long time.
But however you consume them, do they aggravate arthritis?
Beans do not aggravate arthritis.
Beans are a natural anti-inflammatory and are recommended to alleviate the symptoms of arthritis.
Beans are part of a category of vegetables called legumes, and vegetables and legumes are both recommended to reduce inflammation which can aggravate arthritis.
Therefore, it’s a good idea to include beans in your diet.
If you can get some raw beans such as green beans from the vegetable store they are the best.
As it has been shown that raw foods are higher in nutrients than cooked foods.
But, you can also grow your own, or eat the pre-cooked varieties that come in cans.
Some good ways to include beans in your diet are to eat a cold bean salad or add them to a salad.
Bean stews are also very popular in many South American and African cultures where they are typically consumed with rice and meat.
However, meat is not recommended for people with arthritis except for fatty fish like mackerel, and salmon.
Beans can taste OK with fish.
However, both beans and fish are quite high in protein.
And as a result, they can be quite filling.
So, you may find it better to eat them separately.
For example, you might eat a bean salad as a mid-morning snack.
And then eat a salad with a serving of fish for lunch.
How many beans should you eat a day?
Beans are filling and delicious so you may find yourself eating them often, and sometimes everyday.
But, is there a limit to how many beans you should eat in a day?
Overall, around 2 cups (17oz or 500g) of beans is a good amount for most people.
Anything beyond that beans will begin to take up a significant part of your overall diet.
However, most people find that eating more than about 2 cups of beans is quite difficult.
Therefore, your body will naturally tell you when you should stop eating beans.
Beans are also well known for their ability to cause a lot of gas.
And so, you should plan when you’re going to eat them so that you don’t need to excuse yourself often or be sure you can step out briefly.
Most people find that the amount of gas that beans give you is quite inconvenient if you’re needing to be around a lot of people for extended periods of time.
Are legumes low glycemic?
Beans are considered low glycemic except for fava beans (broad beans).
Fava beans are considered high glycemic because they have a glycemic index of over 80.
I wrote an article about whether legumes as a whole are low glycemic and discussed the legumes with the lowest glycemic index.
As well as, whether other foods are low glycemic or not.
You can read it – are legumes low glycemic.
I’m Chris Watson & the Founder of EatForLonger.com. I’m a food and wellbeing enthusiast researching and sharing foodstuffs and simple food-based concepts, such as fasting and clean eating.
I hope it inspires you to make tiny changes to what you eat and when you eat while optimizing your healthspan and all-around well-being.
Read more About Me here.