A couple of weeks ago I was asked by a reader whether adopting a paleo diet would help with their mother’s Arthritis – not having any experience of Arthritis myself, what better way to find out more than to post the question on the Paleo Network’s Facebook page? With almost 60,000 fans, there were a lot of responses, some of which you can read below…
From those who know…
A lot of people responding seem to suffer from Arthritis (or similar conditions) themselves, or had experience to share from family members:
- I suffer with Osteoarthritis and seem to be really good eating Paleo.. When I get off track I know about it.
- Bread and rice would have put me in a wheelchair eventually if I'd allowed it … Go paleo but strictly speaking only three months strict paleo cured me and eternal bone broth thereafter
- I know someone who quit gluten for unrelated reasons and it helped arthritis a lot.
- Take gluten out of diet. I had crippling fibromyalgia until realised it was coeliac disease
- I have fibromyalgia, which is another inflammation-induced disease, and I definitely notice a huge difference in my pain levels & joint stiffness when I am following Paleo more strictly. Gluten is horrible for autoimmune diseases.
- I have osteoarthritis and the Paleo Lifestyle has truly helped a lot. My nutritionist told me it would!
- You have nothing to lose by trying it….my sister has seen her inflammation dramatically reduced the last two weeks on Paleo. She couldn't close her hand in the morning….now she can and no pain….go for it.
- I too have fibromyalgia and have had amazing improvement after 20+ years of suffering.
- Definitely try gluten free and work your way to paleo. I was diagnosed with arthritis and fibromyalgia. Was on methotrexate and enbrel…I went gluten free and was feeling better within a week! Now I am paleo! No more doctors and no more drugs!!
- Absolutely it would help! I had inflammation in my hip so bad that I could barely walk in the mornings. After 3 months paleo – no pain, inflammation gone and no migraines either (which I had been getting on a regular basis for 10years) arthritis is caused by inflammation so it is soooo worth a try for her!
- I have arthritis in my knees, I need knee replacement surgery. I also have degenerative disc disease. The x ray of my back looks like a train with the cars off the track. At the urging of my chiropractor I began my journey into Paleo. My pain levels on the scale of 1-10, 1 being less 10 being most, are down from 10+ to 0 to 2 on the average day. I would say it works for arthritis…
- I found paleo whilst looking to help my arthritis. I've got inflammatory arthritis and since going paleo it's 90% better. No more NSAID's since week two. Been over a year now.
- Get rid of gluten! My joint pains stopped when I went wheat free.
- I have Rheumatoid Arthritis and I started eating Paleo during the Lurong Challenge…and I've noticed a huge difference in how I feel and in my mobility…get off the refined carbs!
- I have Ankylosing Spondylitis and was in terrible pain. I am drug and pain free and in remission 2.5 yrs Paleo now.
- The reason I'm Paleo is because of arthritis.. Pain-free now!!
- I suffer from Psoriatic Arthritis. Paleo has decreased my pain immensely. Avoid glutens & refined sugars. It has blown my mind how different I feel, and the weight loss makes it even better!! Not a “diet”…it's a lifestyle change.
- Yes! I had limited movement in my left arm. Been to physio, rheumatologist, had cortisone injections and anti-inflammatory pills. I have gone Paleo. Lost over 2 stone in weight and my left arm is now back to normal movement, I can even hook my bra at the back. I put this down to Paleo way of eating. I gave up sugar, gluten, wheat, all processed foods. I only use Coconut Oil and natural fats for cooking. Go on, give it at least 3 months and you ‘will' see/feel different inside and out. Good luck. I only want to share this to help! I also purchased a juicer and I juice lots of veg & fruits.
- YES, YES, YES. I'm 64 and have NO aches and pains now.
- Huge difference wouldn't have believed it till I tried it
- My mum had the same issues with her hands and feet, gave paleo a go and her aches and pains reduced significantly!
- Yes, yes, yes!!! I had years of inflammatory arthritis and no grains and sugars helped tremendously!
- Had tendentious for 10 years,was gone after 1 month of paleo
- Definitely. Arthritis in hands and legs markedly less in just a week. Cured my morning hobble which made me feel way older than my years and was not a very encouraging way to start each day.
Another common theme among those who replied was Nightshades and an autoimmune paleo diet. In many cases it seems following a broad paleo diet is not enough and an autoimmune protocol is needed:
- Depends on the type of arthritis. Mine is autoimmune, and after being Paleo for just three weeks, my joints feel much better than they have in years! I also have more energy than I have in a long time.
- Look at the autoimmune version of paleo which nightshades also contribute to inflammation.
- I did once read that some arthritis sufferers had had a positive effect from excluding nightshades from their diet.
- The autoimmune paleo protocol excludes eggs and nightshades too. When I first went paleo my arthritis wasn't at its worst but stopped with the new diet.
- No nightshades
- I have an auto immune disease too & eating Paleo has made a massive massive difference!! Started on an auto immune protocol now so hoping for more benefits
- Go paleo and then beyond with AIP (Auto Immune Paleo), I control my joint pains and whenever I have gluten or nightshades, I flare up really bad so I know the foods I eat is impacting my health directly. Have her keep a small food journal to help her figure out which foods trigger certain responses.
Another popular topic in the arthritis discussion – inflammation:
- Paleo would definitely help! Paleo is an anti-inflammatory diet which really has benefits for arthritic pain. By increasing good fats like avocado, nuts, seeds and cutting out refined oils and carbohydrates we can effectively reduce arthritic pain. Give it a go!
- Paleo works well, eliminating gluten is a big part of it. Reducing the inflammation
- Foods high in flavonoids contribute to inflammation
- Wheat causes inflammations and arthritis is one of them!
There were also a lot of suggestions about other things that could help – Turmeric got several mentions:
- Turmeric capsules are pretty good for joints
- Cinnamon and honey in hot water is good for arthritis pain
- Daily bone broth heals achy bones … Home made easy peasy …. Elimination of caffeine too helps dramatically
- Tell her to try ginger more in her diet anti inflammatory
- And fish oils! Lots of them I take 10 x 1000mg every day and if I don't for a couple of days I have hip and knee pain, constantly! I swear by them.
- Lots of salmon! Grass fed beef is high in omega three too!
Does Paleo help with Arthritis?
Judging by all of the responses, it definitely seems like eating paleo could help… My favourite comment sums it up nicely: “Get your mum on board. Tell her to give it a try for a couple of months ‘just to see’. She'll be amazed”
I’d love to continue the discussion – do you have arthritis? Has changing your diet had an impact? Please share your comments below!