Hey Mamas, joint pain is a common problem for many people, so let’s go over a list of foods that cause joint pain!
It’s an unfortunate reality that joint pain is incredibly common. As people age, the body’s ability to recover from wear and tear can decline, and the joints are among the first things to suffer.
Many moms write this off as one of those unfortunate realities of aging; however, your diet can either help or hurt your chronic joint pain. In this article I am going to discuss joint pain, provide foods that may be causing your joint pain, and how you can alleviate it with a better diet.
Joint pain is a common symptom of osteoarthritis (OA), rheumatoid arthritis (RA), gout and other joint disorders. People often describe join pain as a sharp, shooting or burning pain in the affected joint. The location of the pain may vary depending on where the problem is in your body.
Joint pain is a common problem. Many people experience joint pain from time to time, but it’s especially common among older adults and those with certain medical conditions. Sometimes, the cause of your joint pain is obvious, for example, you may have injured yourself by twisting your ankle or falling down, while other times it’s merely a symptom of a bigger illness.
While not all cases of joint pain are caused by diet, it’s worth identifying if your diet is contributing to your joint problems. This list of foods will help you determine what you should eliminate from your diet for optimal joint health:
Arthritis vs Joint Pain
The first thing to understand is that joint pain is not arthritis. Arthritis refers to a group of conditions that cause inflammation and symptoms in the joints, including cartilage loss, bone deformity, and reduced range of motion. Joint pain, on the other hand, is a symptom of arthritis, and can be caused by many things besides arthritis itself.
This means that if you have joint pain but no other symptoms of arthritis (like swelling or stiffness), it’s possible that your joints are inflamed for another reason entirely. The possible driving factor could be your diet. If you want to learn more about the different causes of joint pain, read VeryWell Health’s article, Joint Pain Causes and Treatment Options.
List of Foods That Cause Joint Pain
The acidity level of tomatoes can cause inflammation in the joints if you consume too much of it. People suffering from rheumatoid arthritis should avoid eating tomatoes because they may aggravate their condition.
2. Citrus Fruits
Citrus fruits are acidic, and the acidity can irritate your joints and cause inflammation. The acidity can also cause your body to produce extra acid, which may be painful.
3. White Bread
White bread is made from refined flour and has a high carbohydrate content. It also contains little to no dietary fiber, which means it doesn’t help your body absorb nutrients or keep you feeling full for long. The sugar in white bread can cause spikes in blood sugar levels, which causes inflammation and discomfort.
4. Marinated Meats
The acidity of vinegar and salt can cause your joints to swell, leading to pain. To avoid this problem, be sure to rinse your meats thoroughly after marinating them. And if you do want to add salt or pepper while cooking on the stovetop, make sure it’s done quickly so that it doesn’t come into prolonged contact with the meat and potentially cause joint pain.
5. Soy Sauce
Soy sauce is a salty condiment that can cause joint pain in those who consume it. In fact, sodium is one of the top causes of joint pain and high blood pressure. The recommended daily intake of sodium is 2,300 mg per day; however, most Americans consume over twice this amount each day.
6. Corn and Corn-Fed Meats
The majority of corn in the United States is genetically modified, and genetically modified foods have been shown to cause inflammation. Inflammation can lead to joint pain and other health issues. Another issue with eating corn is that it contains high amounts of omega-6 fatty acids, which causes inflammation in joints. Corn fed meat products like beef are also higher in saturated fats, which may also cause joint pain.
7. Dairy Products
Dairy products may be the culprit behind joint pain in the hands, feet and legs. The reason is because dairy products have high amounts of glutamate. Glutamate is an amino acid that can cause inflammation in your body. This is why doctors recommend avoiding foods that contain high amounts of non-essential amino acids.
8. Spicy Foods
Spicy foods are a common cause of joint pain. In fact, they have been scientifically proven to contribute to inflammation in the body and in the joints. This is because spicy foods contain capsaicinoids, which are substances that cause an increase in blood flow and metabolism. When there is an increase in blood flow and metabolism, it can lead to inflammation.
Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, rye and oats. It is a common allergen and can cause inflammation of the gut. It’s also been linked to joint pain.
You should avoid foods with added sugar as they increase inflammation in the body. Especially if you have diabetes or prediabetes. Replacing them with natural sweeteners such as honey or stevia will still provide all those same flavors without all that extra sugar content!
The nightshade family includes eggplant, peppers and potatoes. Foods in this family contain a chemical called solanine that can irritate the gut and cause inflammation in other parts of the body like joints. So enjoy this one in moderation!
Caffeine is a stimulant, and it can cause dehydration by drawing water from the body to help speed the metabolism of caffeine. Too much caffeine can also exacerbate pre-existing conditions like anxiety and insomnia, making them more difficult to deal with on their own. If you’re dealing with joint pain or stiffness that just won’t go away, it might be time to cut back on your coffee habit!
Alcohol is a diuretic, which means that it causes you to urinate more. When you drink alcohol, your body sends water to the kidneys to dilute the concentration of alcohol.
This means that less water is delivered to your muscles and joints, resulting in dehydration and increased pain. Alcohol also contains sugar, which can cause inflammation in the body—and this also contributes to joint pain.
14. Processed Foods
Processed foods are those that have been altered from their original state.
They are often high in sugar, sodium, saturated fat and trans fats. Processed foods don’t contain any nutrients that your body needs to function properly. They also have chemicals added to them which can cause inflammation in your joints if consumed regularly over time.
15. Artificial Sweeteners and Margarine
You may have heard that artificial sweeteners are bad for your health. They’ve been linked to cancer, obesity, and diabetes. If you don’t have any of those conditions yet (and you’re not a petri dish), artificial sweeteners can still wreak havoc on your joints.
Foods That Relieve Joint Pain
The foods you eat can have a substantial impact on your joint health, and in some cases, may help relieve joint pain. Here is a list of foods that contribute to joint pain relief.
Foods high in omega-3 fatty acids, such as salmon and tuna
Foods high in vitamin D, such as eggs and mushrooms
Foods high in calcium, such as kale and broccoli
Foods high in magnesium, such as spinach and potatoes (particularly sweet potatoes)
Foods that contain phosphorus, such as beans (black or pinto), lentils and nuts like almonds or cashews.
Drinking plenty of water every day (about 8 glasses)
Struggling find healthy meals, or don’t want to deal with meal preps and plans? Try one of these:
Everytable – Everytable aims to redefine the food landscape the same way McDonald’s did fifty years ago. But this time, instead of burgers and fries, we are selling nutritious, fresh, made-from-scratch food, at fast-food prices.
Blue Apron – Blue Apron’s mission is to make incredible home cooking accessible to everyone. Blue Apron only supplies the best ingredients. They believe in setting a high standard for their ingredients so they work directly with family-run farms and artisanal purveyors.
Butcher Box – ButcherBox curates and customizes high-quality cuts for you, including grass-fed beef, free-range organic chicken, heritage-breed pork, wild-caught seafood, and more!
Final Thoughts: List of Foods That Cause Joint Pain
Joint pain can be frustrating and feel like a daily battle. But if you keep in mind some of the foods that cause joint pain, you’ll be able to avoid them and ease your symptoms. By eating more anti-inflammatory foods and balancing out your diet, you may not only feel less pain, but also improve your overall health.
Download my FREE Feed Your Joints Cheat Sheet so you’ll know which foods to keep close and which foods to avoid at all costs (OR consume in moderation 😉)!
What foods do you know that cause joint pain? Put them in the comments below!