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Rheumatism-causing Foods to Avoid

Rheumatism is a condition where the body is in an inflamed state. Any foods which make way for inflammation is likely to aggravate the symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis. To help improve your situation, you may wish decrease the following from your diet to help decrease the pain!


Sugary foods such as sugarcane and foods with added sugar release a substance called Cytokine which is an inflammatory messenger. Consume sugar-free products instead! Ingredients with sugar generally end with –ose, such as Fructose and Sucrose. Be sure to eliminate such products from your shopping cart as much as possible.


Any form of meat, Chicken, Pork, Beef, Turkey and even Fish are triggers and should be avoided. If possible, switch to a veggie based diet. (Or at least cut down on meat!)

Processed Foods

Processed foods are rich in salt, sugar, preservatives and colouring – all of which are inflammation aggravators. Opt for freshly prepared and cooked food instead.

Advanced Glycation End (AGE) Product

AGE product is a toxin that is produced when foods are heated, grilled, fried, or pasteurised. A study conducted in 2009 found that avoiding foods cooked at high temperatures may help reduce AGE levels in the blood.

Saturated Fats

Saturated fats are present in a lot of today’s foods and stimulate inflammation in the fat/adipose tissues of the body. Not only that, they are major indictors of heart disease.

Omega6 Fatty Acids

Omega 6 fatty acids are no doubt essential fatty acids needed by the body for normal growth and development, but the body needs a healthy balance of Omega6 and Omega3 fatty acids. Excess consumption of Omega6 fatty acids which are present in items such as corn oil, safflower oil, sunflower oil, peanut oil and salad dressings facilitate the body in producing pro-inflammatory chemicals.


Any form of dairy, whole or skimmed, may trigger Rheumatism in some individuals. According to the Physician’s Committee of Responsible Medicine, milk protein irritates the tissue surrounding joints. Shift your protein source from Dairy to beans and lentils as an alternative.

Alcohol and Tobacco

Alcohol and Tobacco trigger many conditions which cause Arthritis/joint inflammation. Excessive alcohol consumption increase the risk of Gout and Tobacco addiction causes one to be more susceptible to Rheumatoid Arthritis.

Refined Carbohydrates

White rice, refined wheat flour products (such as pasta and bread) and potatoes fall into the category of refined carbohydrates. These trigger many diseases including Rheumatoid Arthritis. Complex carbohydrates such as brown rice, whole wheat and fibre rich foods such as fruits with peel are ideal choices instead. They are foods with low Glycaemic index which facilitate sustained release of sugar in the blood stream compared to those of refined carbohydrates and prevent disease or improve condition.


Salt is shown to trigger joint inflammation. Minimise salt intake and opt for low salt or salt-free dressings. Choose salt that is low in sodium as an alternative when necessary.

Physicians to advise that certain foods that trigger inflammation for one person may not have the same effect on another. Hence, while it is definitely good to avoid certain foods, to be 100% sure, do consult your physician. In general, avoiding foods that cause weight gain will have a positive impact as excess weight can trigger joint problems!

Check out our Healthy and Nourishing Recipes for some wholesome and delicious meals for your whole family!


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