Could Eating Fish Prevent Rheumatoid Arthritis?

omega-3 may prevent rheumatoid arthritisWho wants to develop rheumatoid arthritis?  This will include painful, swollen joints in the hands and feet that ultimately enlarge to the point of visible deformity; even joint displacement.  With rheumatoid arthritis, you’ll awaken with a stiffness that can last for hours.

No takers?

Well then, it will interest you that researchers have found that eating fatty fish may well prevent rheumatoid arthritis.  The Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases states that just one serving a week of fatty fishes like salmon, or four servings a week of leaner fish such as cod could cut your risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis by as much as 50%.   The study was conducted in Sweden among 32,000 women who filled out health questionnaires ten years apart. Even with lifestyle factors such as alcohol consumption and tobacco use considered, the women who ate fatty fish once a week developed rheumatoid arthritis at half the rate of those who did not eat fish.

Fish Consumption Prevents Rheumatoid Arthritis? The Conclusion

The study’s researchers conclude that the omega-3 fatty acids contained in the fish protected the immune systems of the women who consumed it.  Rheumatoid arthritis, after all, is an immune disorder, where the body’s own defenses attack the joints, causing pain and eventually destroying cartilage and bone.

Although the research is definitely not conclusive, and was not conducted on those who supplemented their diet with an omega-3 capsule, the results are encouraging.

Dr. Jef Lieberman, Rheumatologist and Adjunct Clinical Associate Professor at Emory University in Atlanta says, “I would recommend to patients that one to two servings of fatty fish a week may have some preventative effects on rheumatoid arthritis and should not have any significant downside.”  He concludes, “The message is not that you need to be eating fish every day.  The message is that modest amounts of freshwater or fatty fish may have some potential benefit.”

Of course, for those who have already developed joint issues, we have all the medications you need for comfort and treatment.  But for those who have yet to deal with this issue, we want to share the information.  No person should have to deal with this painful malady.  Though the study was not conducted with omega-3 supplements, if arthritis runs in your family, it may be a good idea to start a preventative regimen.  But more importantly, have you tried incorporating more fatty fish into your diet?

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