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    Change Your Diet - Gluten free, Dairy free, organic foods
    morgan789 posted:
    f you have Rheumatiod Arthritis, please change your diet. I'm 48 and began symptoms of RA after 1st child (12 yrs ago) then developed severe RA over the next 3 yrs. Finally, I was diagnosed w RA and prescribed Methotrexate. The drug helped tremendously, but still swollen feet in the morning and couldn't jog comfortably. Next prescribed Remicade. Great results, but constantly sick due to compromised immune system. Stayed on Remicade for 5 yrs then missed several "infusions" due to illnesses. I decided not to resume Remicade treatments. I had some RA return in my feet and knees and occasional flare-ups throughout other joints, so I decided to try a last ditch effort of changing my diet before beginning medications again. I took all wheat out of my diet (VERY hard to do, but gets easier after a month). I also took most dairy out of my diet and eat mostly organic fresh foods. Processed, packaged foods are no longer in my diet either. I no longer have RA symptoms at all and it's been almost 3 years. PLEASE try changing your diet! It's a hassle but worth it. I can't tell you how great I feel. This is huge coming from someone who couldn't snap her baby's clothes, had to walk down the stair backwards due to unbearable foot pain, and couldn't turn the ignition on the car with one hand (wrist pain). My entire body was laden with extreme pain. Now, I have no symptoms what so ever! What do you have to loose? Try this healthy diet for at least 3 months (it takes about 2 months to get the toxins out of your body). No cheating. Remember: no gluten, no diary - yogurt is ok, eat only organic - it's expensive, but less expensive then the cost of RA, I eat lots of fish and chicken and stay away from red meat and pork. You'll have more energy, you'll lose weight and hopefully you'll find that your RA symptoms have lessened or better yet, gone away completely. P. S. If you're religious at all, Lent is good time to start this diet. It really helped keep me in check when I was having those bread cravings! Also, I have my whole family on this diet. Occaisionally they'll have some wheat or dairy here and there, but not much. My husband has lost weight too. We feel this is the way we should be eating even if an illness wasn't involved. I just wanted someone to know this story. I think there are many more like mine and it's going to take time to change the medical communitiy's way of thinking.
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    Torch007 responded:
    "I think there are many more like mine and it's going to take time to change the medical communitiy's way of thinking."Thank you for posting this. The whole story.
    We've been gluten and dairy free for over a month now. We also avoid fast food and prepackaged crap. ;O)
    My 7 year old daughter was diagnosed with JRA almost two years ago. Methotrexate didn't work, and now we're on to Enbrel. She screams from the pain when we inject her with it. It lasts about 10 sec but it feels like forever.
    Anyway, the diet change was something I researched and pushed for after paying attention to flares and what she had been eating the day before. The drugs didn't seem to do much. Change in diet really seems to be helping, but its hard. Especially for a child. If it was just for me, it wouldn't be a problem, but our family is doing it together. Reading this made me feel a little bit better. Its hard when people act like you're crazy. And it DOES sound crazy. How can food effect someone like this? But I truly believe the change in diet is helping, on many levels. No more limping, focuses better, swelling is down, more energy.
    After 3 weeks of going Gluten and Dairy free, we had a family member sneak her bread and cheese. She swelled up and had to put a heating pad on her knees, she rubbed at her wrists all that night. Not only that night but on and off for the next 3 days, along with dark circles under her eyes that had been gone for a few weeks. I believe it was the food. On the other hand, that same day she had walked around the mall for a few hours. So I'm told, it could have been the walking too. I disagree, but would like to know for sure.
    Did you do any kind of "cheat" on purpose to see if it really is the food? And is that a crazy idea?
    Or should I just go with my gut as a mother and keep doing what I know is right? Even if that makes me the bad guy?
    Also, as for the medical community... Our rheumatologist never even mentioned food or diet change. So yes, we have a ways to go, but I'm with you!
    I realize this was all over the place, sorry.
    petra806 replied to Torch007's response:
    Thanks for posting this. I have heard that diet may help my RA, however, my rheumatologist said that "it won't matter". I don't believe him and I have been watching what I eat. I still haven't found what triggered the pain or flare ups. My condition has been better after taking Hydroxychoroquine for 5 months. Although the pain is still there on most of the joints affected, it is not as severe as when it first started 8 months ago. If you have been taking Celebrex, please replace it with over the counter pain reliever if possible. I took it for 7 months and I had heart pains and bloating stomachs. Now that the pain is under control, I have replaced it with Advil. The pain has been bearable so far.
    RogerHe responded:
    Your story is the same as mine. You are right on track!Through trial and error, I have learned the same lessons as you... the hard way. It is very difficult to know what was eaten yesterday that is causing pain and inflamation today.
    I also discovered (by eating Thai food) that chilis contain capzasin, which is a natural anti-inflamatory medication. I make sure to eat at least one meal a day with chilis and have had amazing results.
    I have also tried the rub-on creams, but with less success.
    I told my RA specialist about this, but he only seemed to be amused. Then he prescribed Methotrexate, as well. Haven't seen him since. I don't understand why doctors are so resistive to natural medications and prefer to prescribe harmful chemicals with serious side affects.
    Thanks for helping to spread the word!
    Indea1 responded:
    I had wheat and egg allergies long before the outward symptoms of RA, and switched to a vegan, wheat- free diet. I am sure my RA was completely held off for at least 15 years just by that change in diet, and it also helped my other allergies. Now I have aggressive and difficult to control RA, and have added fish back to my diet, but I think the RA would have gotten me as much as 20 years earlier if I hadn't changed my diet,
    Lupimom replied to Indea1's response:
    I was diagnosed with RA in 2002 after having painful and swollen wrists and severe pain in my left hip. In January 2006 I required a total hip replacement. My first RA doctor put my on Plaquenil and Naproxen which worked well, but after several years I began having problems with my eyes (flashing lights and blurred vision) and some erosion of my esophagus (due to the high dosage of Naproxen). I left that RA doctor. My current doctor placed me on Humira, together with Methotrexate, which worked well for 4 years and then stopped working. I began Rituxan last December w/Methotrexate and they seem to be working well. Due to the problem with my esophagus, I can no longer take NSAIDS. However,that isn't a problem as when taking Humira and now Rituxan (both w/Methotrexate) I very rarely have flare ups. I think the medications are helpful, but I also have changed my diet. Previously for 30 years I had been a Vegan and always felt good. Then I began eating some chicken and fish along with occasional meat. About a year of eating animal meats, I began showing symptoms and was diagnosed with RA. Recently, I have returned to a Vegan diet. I cannot say for sure whether it is mainly due to the change in diet or a combination of diet with the Biologics. But I feel better than I have for a number of years and everyone tells me I look well. I will never again be tempted to eat any other diet than a Vegetarian Diet. I had read in a number of books on RA that this is the best diet for RA, which prompted me to return to one again.
    Geo5440 responded:
    I think your RA is different than mine. But I will experiment with diet. The motivation is there.
    matilda65 responded:
    I have also found a diet of low carbs have helped me. I've lost weight, started doing more exercise, and until a recent flare-up have felt wonderful. Thanks for you ideas!!!
    Rainbow14830 responded:
    It's definitely worth a try. Anything to avoid all the medications.
    gthronburg responded:
    How ironic!! I have been gluten free, dairy free, mostly sugar and caffeine free for over 20yrs. I had a naturpathic doctor help me after being diagnosed, due to fact I was having terrible reactions to the RA medications.
    I am not going to say that I have not cheated, I have, at a very painful price, was RA free for 16yrs after a 5 yr strict regimen then it came back!! Now I just tell myself this is worth it, I am healthy running marathons etc.
    I am glad to see others using diet, wish the medical community would listen.
    As a nurse it can be very frustrating but I believe they are starting to listen as more and more people are finding healing following a more natural diet.
    RAGardener responded:
    Thank you, the same diet changes have helped me tremendously. Also a potent omega 3 supplement, or similar, both lipid extracts with unique amino acid combinations that are much more potent than fish oil in reducing inflammation. I also take curcumin supplements and all the supplements listed in WebMD's recent tip.

    I stay away from all grains, which is hard. I'm adding back steel cut oats once a week but so far have more pain for a couple days after eating it. I'm also sensitive to soy. Love my RA doc but he does not recognize the role of diet and says I can eat anything.
    ELStewart replied to RAGardener's response:
    I had a similar experience with psoriatic arthritis. I am not convinced that one should always avoid gluten though that seems to be the number one problem and certainly was for me.

    I also had a serious vitamin D deficiency which may have played an important role.

    The oats per se might not be the problem for RAGardener. It could be where they are processed. I have a sister with celiac disease and she has found she can eat oats if they were processed in a wheat free facility.
    ELStewart replied to Indea1's response:
    Indea1, you are, I think, right about the RA being held off though you have it now. It seems that there are usually a multiplicity of factors.
    One of the most common things as we age is a vitamin D deficiency. We evolved running around naked in the sun and can produce 20,000 units in less than half an hour doing so. Were I to do this now I think I would not need a supplement but the neighbors would almost certainly object. Try getting a vitamin D deficiency test. If your level is less than 50 25(OH)D you become more susceptible to all sorts of things including auto immune problems.

    When I developed psoriatic arthritis I had a severe deficiency even though I was taking 1500 units a day. Yes methotrexate was recommended but suppressing my immune system sounded like a really bad idea. Of course it was an ND who suggested an elimination diet.

    Most of the things mentioned by others here are likely to have a salubrious effect. I had plaque psoriasis for years. High levels of omega 3 fatty acids did help that a great deal.
    ELStewart replied to Lupimom's response:
    Lupimom, I don't know where you got the name but I started reading it as though you had lupus. This would not be surprising since it is another auto immune disease. Anyway, based on my experience, I always recommend trying to eliminate all gluten and checking for a vitamin D deficiency. I sounds like you eliminate lots of the problem with the vegan diet but it sure would be good to be able to get off those meds completely. The vitamin D supplement might just be the one additional thing that would allow it. It seems that about 90 % of all of us over 50 have a vitamin D deficiency.
    dsgroi responded:
    Dear morgan 789: Wow--that is such a restrictive diet. I have ultra-severe RA with fibromyalgia secondary--and for the past 10 years have steadily gained weight--all unexplainable and devasting to the arthritis. I mention that because I have tried so many different diets, including gluten free, but nothing has helped at all--and I continue to gain weight while being on a very strict diet. However, I have not tried both gluten and diary free at once. You say you eat a lot of fish and chicken and buy organic fresh foods. Can you direct me in other things you eat? Is there a book or web site you can direct me to that would help me in knowing what is OK to eat? I would very much appreciate it. I am 46 and have had RA for 33 years. I had none of the normal symptoms sp when it was finally diagnosed at age 12 I had permanent damage in my fingers. I also have an identical twin sister who does not have the disease (thank God). It's been devastating. I have artificial knees, an artifical ankle and a neck (c1 and C2) fusion, as well as a lot of deformities. I have tried every RA drug out there and every one of them has failed--believe me, every one. I am now trying the new Actemra but like all the others I have not noticed a difference. I am at wit's end and want to find the success you have had.

    Also, to all those out there, what has helped me is deep tissue massage. I wish I started it long ago. I go weekly for 1 hour. My massage therapist is supurb and uses different modalities during each session. It is not fun, often painful, but IT HELPS. Anyone with RA or fibro: do yourself a favor and pursue deep tissue massage therapy. (A lof of it is the same work physical therapists do.)

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