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Busting the Myths Between Arthritis Pain and Food

By Stephen R. Farris

When it comes to certain foods and health, it's hard to distinguish between what is myth and what's reality. For instance, there's a connection between food and arthritis. That connection is that certain foods can help reduce inflammation caused by arthritis -- reduce, not cure -- while others may actually increase inflammation.

Check out this short list of foods associated with arthritis and the truths behind them, whether they actually help with pain or simply do nothing at all.

Tomatoes

People who suffer from arthritis may have been told in the past that tomatoes are harmful because they're poisonous. It's one of those partially true and partially false myths. True, tomatoes produce the toxin solanine. The toxin is supposed to be a cause of inflammation, swelling and joint pain in people with arthritis. However, it's never been proven. The poison is actually found in the leaves to help protect the plant from invaders. So yes, you may eat tomatoes, just don't eat the leaves.

Vinegar

One of the most common fad diets right now involves apple cider vinegar. Apple cider vinegar is supposed to be able to eradicate free radicals that cause inflammation. Nope. Nada. It doesn't. However, you can still use vinegar for mixing up a delicious dressing for your salads!

Dairy

Avoiding milk and dairy products won't lessen your arthritis symptoms. As long as you don't have a dairy allergy, it's safe to consume. 

Gelatin

Gelatin? This one kind of shaky, as in the fact that gelatin was long thought to make stiff joints wobbly. While you might have some fun jiggling it on your dining room table, gelatin will not. Gelatin won't make any difference when it comes to arthritis pain, other than being a delicious snack or dessert.

Salt in Shoes?

It's understandable that people will try just about anything to seek relief from arthritis pain. Some believe that by putting salt inside the bottom of your shoe it will draw moisture away from the inside of your body and help reduce pain and swelling. This myth comes about from the belief that rainy weather and humidity causes arthritis to flare up even worse. Bottom line, it doesn't work. The only thing you'll get by doing this is salty feet.

But if you find yourself suffering from arthritis pain, talk with your local chiropractor to see what tips and suggestions they can offer about the subject. They can also provide treatment options to help give you relief when you feel pain in your back, joints and neck.

To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Rockford, Ill.

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