5 recipes that will help ease the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis
Scientific research has already established that diet has an important role in helping ease the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). This may be because patients suffering from RA are deficient in certain nutrients, which may contribute to inflammation and the worsening of this condition overtime. So, here are 5 recipes will help ease the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis and why.
The effectiveness of diet in easing the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, was further proven in a recent survey with patients who have been suffering with RA for a long time. Twenty-four percent of subjects reported that foods affect their RA, with 15% reporting improvement and 19% worsening. Blueberries and spinach were the foods most often reported to improve RA symptoms, while soda with sugar and desserts were most often reported to worsen RA symptoms. Younger age and noting that sleep, warm room temperature, and vitamin/mineral supplements improve RA were each associated with reporting that foods affect RA symptoms.
The foods that people with rheumatoid arthritis must consume, must be rich in certain nutrients like: zinc, copper, magnesium and vitamin b6, which are depleted in people with rheumatoid arthritis. The depletion of these specific nutrients can cause: chronic inflammation, depression, bone issues, cardiovascular and gastrointestinal issues. So, it makes sense that boosting the intake of these nutrients will ease the symptoms of RA and also improve overall health.
Another important finding, is that there is an association between dietary intake of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) and pain patterns in early rheumatoid arthritis. Patients, after three months of methotrexate (MTX) treatment, found that Omega-3 FA was inversely associated with, and omega-6 to -3 FA ratio was directly associated with unacceptable and refractory pain, but not with inflammatory pain or systemic inflammation. Therefore, the inverse association between omega-3 FA and refractory pain may have a role in pain suppression in RA.
Finally, another research investigated if the mediterranean diet is effective in suppressing disease activity in rheumatoid arthritis (RA). It was found that daily monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) intake, a component of the mediterranean diet score, might suppress disease activity in RA patients. Interestingly, the mediterranean diet has been reported to be good for an improvement and maintenance of cognitive function.
So, here are 5 recipes including all the dietary requirements aforementioned that will help ease symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis
1)Brazilian style black beans
Black beans is a good source of copper, fiber, manganese, vitamin B1, phosphorus, protein, magnesium and iron, and other important nutrients
1 pound dry black beans
4 slices bacon (I like center cut bacon)
1 small-medium onion, diced
5-6 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
4 cups vegetable broth (can use chicken or beef, or even water instead)
1 cup water (more if desired, for "soupier" beans)
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
cooked white rice for serving
Place beans in a fine mesh strainer and pick out any shriveled ones, along with any impurities.
Heat pressure cooker to medium-high heat (sauté setting for electric pressure cooker, medium heat on stove top for regular pressure cooker). While pot is heating, cut bacon into about 1/2-inch pieces. Cook bacon until lightly browned and starting to crisp. Add diced onion and cook, stirring often for 3-4 minutes. Add garlic and stir for about 30 seconds.
Add beans, broth and water, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine and secure lid. Cook on high pressure for 40 minutes, and then release steam from pot. If desired, lightly smash some beans on the side of the pot (this will thicken them), season with additional salt and pepper if desired, and let cool for a few minutes before serving. Serve over white rice.
2) Spinach blueberry banana smoothy
2/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 ripe banana
2/3 cup frozen blueberries
2 large frozen strawberries
1 cup spinach leaves
1/2 cup milk of choice (dairy, coconut, soy, almond)
2 teaspoons protein powder (optional)
1 tablespoon of honey, or to taste
Add all of the ingredients to a blender, cover with the lid, and whirl until smooth. Add more milk if needed to reach the desired consistency and taste for sweetness, adjusting as necessary. Pour into two glasses and enjoy promptly.
Lentils are an excellent source of molybdenum and folate, and very good source of dietary fiber, copper, phosphorus and manganese. Additionally they are a good source of iron, protein, vitamin B1, pantothenic acid, zinc, potassium and vitamin B6.
2 ¼ cups (1 lb.) Du Puy lentils
1 medium red onion, diced
1 cup dried currants (you could also use raisins or other dried fruit)
1/3 cup capers
1/3 cup cold pressed, extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp. maple syrup
1 Tbsp. strong mustard
2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. turmeric
1/2 tsp. ground coriander
½ tsp ground cardamom
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
¼ tsp. ground cloves
1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
¼ tsp. ground cinnamon
Fresh herbs: flat-leaf parsley, cilantro, basil
Crispy seasonal veggies
Rinse lentils well, drain. Place in a pot and cover with a 3-4 inches of water, bring to a boil, reduce to simmer. Check lentils for doneness after 15 minutes, but they should take about 20 minutes in total. You will know they are cooked if they still retain a slight tooth – al dente! Overcooking the lentils is the death of this dish. Be careful!
While the lentils are simmering, make the dressing by placing all ingredients in a jar with a tight fitting lid and shake vigorously to combine.
Finally dice red onion – the salad is best if all the ingredients are about the same size. If using raisins, chop them roughly to make them a bit smaller, and do the same with the capers if they are large.
When the lentils are cooked, remove from heat, drain and place under cold running water to stop the cooking process. Once cooled slightly but still a little warm, place lentils in a large serving bowl and toss with dressing. Add other onion, capers, and currants. If using other add-ins such as herbs, greens, or cheese, wait until just before serving. Otherwise, this salad can hang out in the fridge for a couple days.
4) Overnight oats with flax and chia seeds
Flaxseed and Chia seeds are packed with goodness like: omega 3, fibre and micro nutrients.
2 cups Raw Rolled Oats (sometimes labeled "old fashioned" oats; be sure to use gluten-free if appropriate)
2 Tbsp unsalted Sunflower Seeds
1 Tbsp Flax Seeds
1 Tbsp Chia Seeds
4½ cups Almond Milk (sub any kind of milk)
1 Tbsp Brown Sugar (opt)
pinch of salt
Combine oats, sunflower seeds, flax seeds, chia seeds and almond milk. Stir in brown sugar and a pinch of salt (don't skip the salt - I think it brings out a lot of flavor in the oats, even if you skip the sugar).
Store oats in the refrigerator overnight.
Serve oats straight out of the refrigerator (or warm them up briefly in the microwave if you'd prefer), topped with anything you'd like. Enjoy!
5) Avocado dip
The fruit avocado is virtually the only fruit that has monounsaturated fat. So, its regular consumption will help ease symptoms in people with rheumatoid arthritis. But, its health benefits are far reaching with avocados being able to help in the fight against metabolic syndrome.
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, or to taste
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 1 lemon)
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
mash all ingredients and use as a dip or spread over toasted bread. Alternatively, you can cut the avocado in wedges, season with olive oil, lemon juice and salt and add to your favorite salad!