Arthritis progression can be slowed down if you are not prone to some high-risk behaviors. The bad news is that alcohol and tobacco addiction increase the risk of rapid arthritis development. In order to prevent inflammatory processes in our body, it would be best to stop smoking and drinking alcoholic beverages.
The effect of smoking on arthritis
It is a general belief that smoking affects the cardiovascular system and lungs. Not much is being said about the influence of smoking on the rest of our organism, including our joints. After five years of smoking, nicotine starts affecting every cell in our body. It damages not only the organs’ surface but also the inside. Joint treatment is hampered due to the fact that nicotine also affects connective tissue cells. Non-smokers’ joints recover easier and treatment is quicker than smokers’. Inner cells of non-smokers’ connective tissue are healthy and they regenerate easier. It is harder to induce regeneration and growth of smokers’ damaged cells. Unfortunately, this means that even if you started arthritis treatment in time, it might not be enough to undo the effect that smoking has had on your joints. Smokers’ joints are not as supplied with blood because smoking slows blood circulation down. Since new tissues in smokers develop slower, joints become weaker and bones become more porous. Many studies have indicated that muscles also weaken due to long-term nicotine addiction. All these facts make joints prone to injuries. The best advice anyone can give you, especially if you suffer from arthritis is to stop smoking.
Is it wise to mix alcohol with arthritis?
Some researches have shown that moderate alcohol consumption decreases the risk of rheumatoid arthritis. However, if you already suffer from arthritis, you should not drink alcohol at all. Analgesics that arthritis patients often take to ease the pain should not be taken with alcohol. Combination of these medications and alcohol can often lead to stomach hemorrhage and developing ulcers.
It is also known that alcohol is a powerful diuretic which means that alcohol consumption stimulates more frequent urination whereby your body is getting rid of water. Joint need water to function normally and thus it is very important that we have enough of it in our body. This is another reason why you should not drink alcohol if you suffer from arthritis.
Drinks that are good for you
Since you should drink alcohol in moderation or not at all, these are some drinks that your organism will love.
Freshly made tomato, orange, carrot and pineapple juice is abundant in vitamin C which is a powerful antioxidant that protects our tissues and has strong anti-inflammatory properties.
Teas, especially green tea, are rich in polyphenols which also have anti-inflammatory effect.
Smoothies have only become popular recently, mainly due to people who have decided to incorporate healthy diet in their everyday lives. This drink is especially beneficial to arthritis patients. When you make your drink by blending whole fruits instead of squeezing them, you provide your organism with more fibers. Fibers will help unclog blood vessels which will accelerate blood circulation around joints. Fruits and vegetables contain many minerals and vitamins which are healthy for you and will help prevent inflammation. If you add a teaspoon of turmeric powder to your smoothie, you will get a drink your organism will love.
And finally, the queen of all drinks – water. Drinking enough water enables our body to get rid of toxins. If you drink water before meals, you will start losing weight which is advisable if you suffer from arthritis.