Food allergies are associated with many cases of osteoarthritis and virtually all cases autoimmune disease including rheumatoid arthritis.  Autoimmune diseases occur when the body’s immune system attacks the body’s own parts.  The allergic reaction to a food triggers an immune response that “spills over” and causes the body to attack itself.  In the case of rheumatoid arthritis, the body attacks the joints causing pain, inflammation, and joint destruction.

A study done years ago showed that 50% of patients with rheumatoid arthritis improved when they avoided the nightshade family of foods.

Nightshades include:

  • Potato
  • Tomato
  • Eggplant
  • Bell Peppers
  • Hot Peppers including chili peppers, tabasco, tomatillos & tamarillos
  • Paprika
  • Pimentos
  • Tobacco
  • Ashwagandha

Of course there are other food allergies that could trigger an autoimmune response, but for rheumatoid arthritis, total avoidance of nightshade foods for at least a month is a worthwhile venture.  If no changes are noticed, then avoidance of some of the other common allergen foods for a month, one-by-one, can help to identify the offending food.