Regularly Consuming Fish Helps Ward off Rheumatoid Arthritis

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23 Jun 2017 --- Those suffering from rheumatoid arthritis (RA) might want to consider upping their intake of fish, as researchers have recently discovered that individuals with RA who consumed fish more than twice a week had lower disease activity (swollen/tender joint counts along with other assessments) than those who never ate fish or just once a month.

There was also a graded association, so that increasing servings of fish were linked with incrementally lower levels of disease activity. In the study of 176 patients, the frequency of fish consumption was assessed by a food frequency questionnaire assessing usual diet in the past year.

Click to Enlarge“If our finding holds up in other studies, it suggests that fish consumption may lower inflammation related to rheumatoid arthritis disease activity,” said Dr. Sara Tedeschi, lead author of the Arthritis Care & Research study. “Fish consumption has been noted to have many beneficial health effects, and our findings may give patients with rheumatoid arthritis a strong reason to increase fish consumption.”

RA is an autoimmune disease in which the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks the joints, creating inflammation that causes the tissue that lines the inside of joints (the synovium) to thicken, resulting in swelling and pain in and around the joints. 

According to the article abstract, “among 176 participants, median DAS28-CRP was 3.5 (interquartile range 2.9-4.3). In an adjusted linear regression model, subjects consuming fish ≥2 times/week had a significantly lower DAS28-CRP compared with subjects who ate fish never to <1/month (difference -0.49 [95% CI -0.97, -0.02]). For each additional serving of fish per week, DAS28-CRP was significantly reduced by 0.18 (95% CI -0.35, -0.004).”

The findings are available online.

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