All posts by Arthritis Foundation

infusion water

Infuse a Little Zing into Your Water

Hot summer days call for a tall glass of something cold. Your healthiest option? Water.

Not only does it have zero calories, “for those with a chronic condition like arthritis, water also helps in lubricating the joints, so you can move more easily, and helps to flush out the kidneys, so your body can work more efficiently,” says registered dietitian Lyssie Lakatos, with Nutrition Twins consulting in New York City.

How much should you drink? It varies by person,  but aim for about half your body weight in ounces. For a 140-pound individual, that would be 70 ounces (about 9 cups daily), but the water content in other beverages and foods also counts.

Not a water lover? Infuse it with fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs. “Infusing water will add flavor, which gives you a little more motivation to drink up,” adds registered dietitian Tammy Lakatos Shames, Lakatos’s partner in Nutrition Twins. To start, try these antioxidant-rich combos.

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menopause arthritis connection

The Menopause-Arthritis Connection

Cheryl Koehn, 56, was surprised that information about how menopause might impact her rheumatoid arthritis (RA) – and vice versa – was so hard to find. “So many of us go through these profound life experiences in units of one,” says Koehn, who co-authored the book Rheumatoid Arthritis: Plan To Win (2002, Oxford University Press). In fact, living with inflammatory arthritis can affect how women experience menopause and their health risks.

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trampoline workouts

Are Trampoline Workouts Safe with Arthritis?

Mini-trampoline classes, also called “rebounding,” have gotten buzz lately. During class, each person jumps and runs in place, often to music, on his own trampoline. Fans say these fast-paced workouts torch calories and strengthen muscles with less impact than on a hard surface, says physical therapist Scott Euype, education director at Cleveland Clinic’s Rehabilitation & Sports Therapy.

However, you should be cautious before hopping on this bandwagon. If you jump too high or fast, the force may harm an already inflamed or damaged joint. Plus, “the landing surface is unstable, so you could turn an ankle or hurt your knee,” says Mary Ann Wilmarth, owner of Back2Back Physical Therapy in Andover, Massachusetts, and a spokesperson for the American Physical Therapy Association. Check with your doctor before you try rebounding. (Avoid it if you’ve had joint replacement in your feet, ankles, knees or hips unless your doctor has given the OK.)

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protein for arthritis diet

How Much Protein Do You Really Need in Your Arthritis Diet?

From granola bars to pasta, the flood of products touting high protein might have you wondering if you should be getting more protein. For most Americans, that’s probably not the case, and the packaged products filling grocery shelves may not be the best sources, because many high-protein packaged foods are also high in added sugars and calories.

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joint friendly grocery shopping

5 Ways to Make Shopping Easier

Having arthritis can seriously affect your daily errands and plans. Here are some tips to help make shopping less painful and stressful.

Plan Ahead

Before you leave for the store, prioritize what you need to accomplish. If you have multiple errands to run, rank the importance of each stop in case pain sets in and you need to head home. You can also map out your route, from the farthest to closest stop to your home. Remember to consider time of day and traffic patterns. This can help you to keep the time and stress of being on the road and standing in lines to a minimum.

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big toe pain arthritis causes

What’s Aching Your Big Toe?

It is easy to forget how important your big toe is – most of the time it stays out of sight and out of mind, hidden beneath our socks and shoes. But if you have ever had toe pain, you know it can keep you off your feet and up at night.

When arthritis affects the foot it usually hits at the base of the big toe in what is known as the MTP, or metatarsophalangeal joint. This can cause big problems for the tiny joint that has to bend and bear about 50% of your body weight every time you take a step.

Here are six common culprits of big toe joint pain—many of which are related—and ways you can find relief.

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arthritis exercise recommendations

Exercise: It’s Just What Your Doctor Should Order

Doctors should routinely talk to all arthritis patients about the importance of physical activity and exercise, according to new recommendations from the European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR). The recommendations, which received near-unanimous approval from an international team of experts, were published in July in Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases.

In EULAR’s broad definition, physical activity includes exercise, sports, physical labor and ordinary chores like washing the car or gardening. According to the task force, physical activity is safe and effective for people with every type of arthritis, including rheumatoid arthritis (RA), spondyloarthritis (SpA), and hip and knee osteoarthritis (OA) and should be a key part of standard patient care.

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