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As an arthritis sufferer, you may have noticed that there are certain foods that seem to make your symptoms worse. It’s not all in your head, unfortunately.

If you suffer from arthritis, it means your body is in an inflammatory state. What you eat and don’t eat can lend itself to worsening your condition. Not only do your symptoms get worse, not changing your diet may lead to other chronic conditions such as heart disease, diabetes or obesity.

To that end, you’ve probably done a lot of research on what food should be in your next grocery run. Thankfully, there’s a lot. We even made a brief video so you’re guided by the best diet tips that can help manage your symptoms. 

But to keep things simpler, we’ve also compiled a list of common foods and ingredients that you should steer clear off and propose some alternatives—

Saturated fats

Be more conscious of how much saturated fats you’re consuming. Saturated fat stay solid in room temperature—think cheese, butter and meat. Too much of these and it will ultimately cause issues with your cholesterol levels. And since arthritis sufferers are at a higher risk for heart disease, it pays to make sure you keep track of your cholesterol levels.

Saturated fats in small amounts is OK. But make sure that you limit it to less than 10% of your total calorie intake.


Cutting down on salt can help lower your risk of high blood pressure—a condition that may lead to heart attack or kidney disease.

When it comes to salt however, the real question is, how much is too much? The average person consumes about 3,400 mg of sodium a everyday. However most physicians recommend that people limit salt to below 2,300 mg daily.

Be sure to read food labels carefully or use a low-sodium substitute to help minimize your intake. Or you can even substitute table salt with herbs and spices to boost your food flavors.


When you suffer from arthritis, you want to make sure that you’re not putting too much pressure on your joints. This entails maintaining a healthy weight, which means choosing healthier dietary alternatives. To that end, refined sugar easily climbs the top of the list of things to avoid.

Try switching instead to calorie-free sweeteners, honey, agave or maple syrup.


Everything in moderation—that’s the golden rule when it comes to alcohol and arthritis. A glass of wine over dinner or a pint of beer every once in a while may not necessarily be detrimental to your joint. Making a regular habit out of it however can cause a lot of trouble for you—especially if you’re taking maintenance medication for your condition. A lot of pain relievers don’t mix well with alcohol and may raise your risk of stomach bleeding or ulcers; and acetaminophen mixed with alcohol makes you more susceptible to liver damage.  

We tried to keep this list as brief and concise as possible so it’s easy to remember what food you should avoid. If you’d like to share more arthritis diet tips, feel free to leave a comment below.

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