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Five warning signs of rheumatoid arthritis

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Rheumatoid arthritis is a long-term condition that causes pain, swelling and stiffness in the joints. If you have rheumatoid arthritis, your immune system mistakenly sends antibodies to the lining of your joints, where they attack the tissue surrounding the joint. This inflammation can be reduced by making healthy dietary interventions, suggests a new study.

The key finding of a study conducted by researchers at Stanford University is that eating yogurt can help counter arthritis.

Researchers from Stanford University found fermented foods such as yogurt, boosted good gut bacteria and seemed to help prevent inflammation — a key driver of arthritis.

Study authors noted that eating these foods led to an increase in overall microbial diversity in the gut, cheap xenical pills with stronger effects from larger servings.

The levels of 19 inflammatory proteins – which are markers of inflammation – also decreased.

One of these proteins, called interleukin 6, has a connection to chronic conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis and type 2 diabetes.

“This is a stunning finding,” said Justin Sonnenburg, PhD, an associate professor of microbiology and immunology, in a university release.

“It provides one of the first examples of how a simple change in diet can reproducibly remodel the microbiota across a cohort of healthy adults.”

To gather their findings, researchers compared the effects of high-fibre and high-fermented food diets.

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Fermented foods are foods or beverages produced through controlled microbial growth, and the conversion of food components through enzymatic action.

While high-fibre diets have a link to lower rates of mortality, none of the 19 inflammatory proteins decreased in participants eating a high-fibre diet.

Good examples of high-fibre foods include legumes, seeds, whole grains, nuts, vegetables, and fruits.

On average, the diversity of their gut microbes did not change for high-fibre eaters.

“We expected high fibre to have a more universally beneficial effect and increase microbiota diversity,” explained Dr Erica Sonnenburg, a senior research scientist in basic life sciences, microbiology, and immunology at Stanford.

“The data suggest that increased fibre intake alone over a short time period is insufficient to increase microbiota diversity.”

“We wanted to conduct a proof-of-concept study that could test whether microbiota-targeted food could be an avenue for combatting the overwhelming rise in chronic inflammatory diseases,” added Dr. Christopher Gardner, professor of medicine at Stanford.

A proof of concept is an exercise in which work is focused on determining whether an idea can be turned into a reality.

The researchers analysed blood and stool samples collected during a three-week pre-trial period, the 10 weeks of the diet, and a four-week period after the diet when the participants ate as they chose.

Those who increased their consumption of fermented foods showed similar effects on their microbiome diversity and inflammatory markers which is consistent with previous research showing that short-term changes in diet could change the gut microbiome.

Other key tips for managing arthritis

If your arthritis is painful, you may not feel like exercising.

“However, being active can help reduce and prevent pain,” explains the NHS.

Regular exercise can also:

  • Improve your range of movement and joint mobility
  • Increase muscle strength
  • Reduce stiffness
  • Boost your energy.

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