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    The Elimination and Combination Vegan Diets Help to Reduce Joint Pain



    According to a small study published by Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine and published in American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine (April 2022), a vegan diet along with eliminating trigger foods could help reduce joint pain from rheumatoidarthritis (RA).

    Rheumatoid Arthritis Symptoms & Food: A Unique Study Design

    Previous studies have shown positive correlations between anti-inflammatory, plant-based diets and reduced RA joint pain. However, this study is different in that it included a crossover section in which participants in the diet and those in the placebo group, who believed they were receiving special supplements, switched places after the first trial was over.

    A systemic elimination diet removes and reintroduces suspect foods

    Veganism is the most strict form of vegetarianism. Vegans avoid all animal products and limit meat. The diet groups went on an elimination diet after four weeks of a vegan diet. Individually, participants eliminated trigger foods such as soy products and gluten-containing grains, white potatoes, sweet potato, chocolate, citrus fruits, nuts, peanuts. onions, coffee, alcohol, sugar, and white potatoes. Participants were able to reintroduce potential trigger foods over nine weeks, after a three-week-long combination vegan/eliminator diet. If the food was causing joint pain, it was removed again. They kept the food if it didn’t cause any problems.

    Research shows promising results for reducing joint pain

    The diet groups saw significant improvements in pain and swelling, even after four weeks of veganism. The elimination diet helped them to fine-tune their diets by identifying the triggers,” Hana Kahleova MD, PhD, director for clinical research at the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, and co-author of the study. The diet group lost approximately 14 pounds, while the placebo group gained only 2 pounds. During the vegan phase, cholesterol levels were reduced.

    The diet is an important aspect of treating RA. It makes sense to reduce inflammation if you can control your diet. You have a better chance of improvement if you already eat a vegetarian or vegan diet.

    A plant-based diet reduces inflammation and increases anti-inflammatory foods

    The vegan diet facilitates the reduction of symptoms by combining two factors. One is that a vegan, vegetarian or plant-based diet will result in a lower intake of saturated fats. You don’t eat animal fats or add butter, cheese, or milk fat. You can remove the saturated fats that can cause inflammation and replace them with plant-based oils from nuts and seeds. This will give you healthier fats that are more inflammatory or anti-inflammatory.

    She says that there is another possibility: Plant-based diets may provide more phytochemicals, which are anti-inflammatory. It’s not only vitamin D and vitamin C that can have an impact on inflammation, but also all the smaller plant compounds such as anthocyanin.

    More Research is Required

    This study has some limitations that warrant further investigation. Only 44 patients with rheumatoid arthritis were included in the study, and some did not follow the protocol. While this study is well-designed and decent, it needs to be considered how much you can extrapolate the findings to a larger population. A few biomarkers would be helpful, rather than more clinical observation of disease activity. Landon, who has rheumatoid arthritis, cautions that clinical biomarkers (such as blood levels protein that indicate systemic inflammation) would strengthen the studies and results.

    Dr. Kahleova agrees with Dr. Kahleova that the research is a promising start. “This was basically an exploratory study. Although this is the first study of its kind, it’s not the first. However, further studies are needed to verify the findings in larger populations. It is possible that other research groups will find this inspiring and start their own studies.

    Vegan diets are difficult to follow long-term

    Dr. Sandon also said that veganism is not easy to follow. Many people give up on the idea after trying it. Many people can end up with nutrient deficiency if they are not treated correctly. Rheumatoid arthritis sufferers are already at high risk of nutrient deficiencies. They don’t have to be more at risk. They require adequate protein. They require adequate vitamins and minerals.”

    Dr. Bose advises that patients who wish to become vegan should take things step-by-step, particularly if they are not already vegetarian. Start by cutting out red meat. Next, eliminate all other meats and fish. It can be overwhelming to go vegan. Take it slow. You can try a vegetarian diet if you are unable to maintain it.

    If you are considering a vegan diet, you should plan where you will get the nutrients you have to give up. It is best to consult a registered dietitian (RD) or a registered dietitian-nutritionist (RDN) on how to create a balanced, healthy diet.



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