If you or someone you love suffers from rheumatoid arthritis, or RA, there’s a new piece of research you’ll want to hear.
It’s an odd connection… certainly not something I would have put together. But it makes sense if you trace this research back to that root of so many of our health problems…
Connecting the dots between RA and inflammation isn’t too far a stretch. As an autoimmune disease, RA is basically your body attacking itself. Specifically, waging war against your joints.
You’ve got chronically swollen, painful, inflamed joints. And sometimes more than that… RA can attack healthy tendons and muscles… your heart, eyes, and lungs.
Because RA means chronic inflammation, researchers took a look at this disease and its connection to another disease that takes a page out of the same book.
COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) is also a chronic inflammatory condition. COPD’s specialty is the lungs, making it tougher and tougher to breathe.
Smoking is the main cause of COPD, but you don’t have to be a smoker to be at risk.
Canadian researchers did a long-term study and found that people with RA are 47% more likely to end up in the hospital with COPD.
I don’t know about you, but I don’t fancy those odds.
And the connection between RA and COPD? You guessed it: inflammation.
Our bodies are much more connected than we think. When it comes to health problems, the root is often inflammation.
It’s critical to kick those inflammatory triggers to the curb if you have RA or COPD.
For COPD that’s quitting smoking (this goes for pipes and cigars too). You’ll also want to cut out irritating dusts or fumes on the jobsite or at home.
For RA, it’s cutting way back on stress, strenuous activity that leaves you exhausted, and certain foods. Inflammatory foods.
I’ve been big fan of an anti-inflammatory diet for a while now. I figure the less stress I can put on my body, the better.
If you’re managing RA or COPD, experts recommend a diet high in antioxidants like blueberries, dried plums, and pomegranates.
Add in some whole grains like raw oats, ginger, turmeric, fiber, and round it out with plenty of vegetables, and you’ve got an inflammation busting menu that packs a punch.
And then there’s always Karen’s favorite: dark chocolate.
If you have RA, you should be especially careful to look out for signs of COPD and focus on an anti-inflammatory diet.
And keep in mind that even if you’re not suffering, most of us have too much inflammation in our bodies – and we should take steps to squash these flames.
Because if it doesn’t cause problems in your joints or lungs, the rest of your body is vulnerable too – including your brain… and your heart.
Editor, Patriot Health Alliance