Exercise can be a powerful balm for many of the things that ail us, including depression, bone loss, fatigue, heart disease, diabetes and arthritis. But if a goal of exercise is to lose weight, you’ll increase your chances of success by changing your diet.
Keeping excess pounds at bay and eating the right foods are critical to keeping joint pain in check. But not all weight-loss plans are effective and not every diet is a good choice for someone with arthritis. We asked three dietitians for the skinny on five headline-grabbing plans.
This plan recommends eating like a “caveman,” so anything that could be hunted or gathered is fair game. Anything else is on the chopping block.
Pros: The paleo diet prohibits processed foods while pushing nuts, seeds, fruits and veggies. Meats are free-range and grass-fed, and fish are wild.
Maintaining a healthy weight is especially important for people with arthritis. It helps keep inflammation in check, reduces excess pressure on joints, makes exercise easier and lowers the risk of cardiovascular disease, which is of particular concern if you have an inflammatory form of arthritis. Yet every day we deal with diet distractions that can cause us to overeat or make unhealthy food choices.
That’s why it’s important to understand your eating triggers and learn strategies to deal with them, says Courtney Burtscher, PsyD, a clinical psychologist at Advocate Illinois Medical Center in Chicago. Here are five common diet downfalls – and how to overcome each.