dreamstime_xxl_6775892Arthritis is the word we use to refer to diseases related to inflammation and joint pain. Although we lack much knowledge regarding arthritis, including what causes it, treatments have been developed over the years, including shoulder replacement surgery. Medical research and patient experience have both contributed to a list of foods generally believed to exacerbate arthritic symptoms. If you suffer from arthritis pain and want to try something else before surgery, try cutting out one or all of these things from your diet and lifestyle:

AGE’s
An AGE, or an advanced glycation end product, is a toxin that increases the rate at which your body’s cells experience oxidative damage, which causes inflammation and consequential joint pain. AGE’s become present in food when it is heated, grilled, dried, pasteurized, smoked, or fried.

Fried and Processed Food
Because of the presence of AGE’s, you should avoid foods that are fried. You should also limit your intake of processed foods, which contain inflammation-triggering trans and saturated fats. Instead of reaching for a bag of chips or cookies, opt for some fresh fruit or fresh or frozen vegetables.

Sugar and Refined Carbohydrates
Processed sugar has been linked to inflammation, and refined carbohydrates aid in the production of advanced glycation end products, which are explained above.

Dairy Products
Although dairy products don’t affect all sufferers of arthritis in the same way, many people with arthritis have found relief by eliminating animal products from their diets. The proteins found in dairy products can contribute to arthritis pain by irritating joint tissue.

Alcohol and Smoking
Limited consumption of alcohol might relieve some inflammation, but consult your doctor to ensure there will be no interactions if you’re on any medications. Smoking should be avoided entirely as it increases the risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis.

Arthritis in your shoulders is painful and can be extremely debilitating. Try banning one or all of these foods from your diet. If you’re at a point where you’re ready to explore surgery options, contact us to schedule an appointment with Dr. Thomas Kovack, a board certified and fellowship trained orthopedic surgeon specializing in traditional shoulder replacement as well as shoulder replacement alternatives.