Since nutrition plays an important role in controlling the inflammatory effects of psoriatic arthritis, Dr. Robin Dore from UCLA is here to review the recommended diet for patients with psoriatic arthritis.
Welcome to Beyond Skin Deep: Impacts of Psoriatic Arthritis on ReachMD, sponsored by Lilly. We recently spoke with Dr. Robin Dore, Clinical Professor of Medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA in Los Angeles, California, about her dietary recommendations for patients with psoriatic arthritis. Let’s hear from her now.
There are some data to suggest that the Mediterranean diet is effective in controlling the inflammation associated with psoriatic arthritis. Often I’ll refer the patients to something online where they can see some menus. But when we look at the Mediterranean diet, there’s an emphasis on olive oil and oily fish, and nuts, trying to minimize the amount of red meat intake. Many of the patients don’t think of dairy products as being a type of animal fat, so I’ll try to steer them towards a nonfat yogurt, maybe a mozzarella cheese, some Swiss cheese, some goat cheese, and try to control the inflammation that way. There’s also some data to suggest that sugar makes pain worse, so I’ll try to have them avoid foods that have both sugar and fat, such as doughnuts, coffee cake, pies—very important.
The other thing that in looking at the Mediterranean diet, there’s evidence that olive oil is anti-inflammatory, so I will talk to the patients about instead of using canola oil or corn oil or Crisco, to switch over to using olive oil. In fact, there was one study that looked at inflammatory types of arthritis and found that by adding an extra 15 oz I think it was—no, I’m sorry, 15 cc of olive oil—that this was also anti-inflammatory as well. So diet is very important in controlling the inflammation in psoriatic arthritis. There’s anecdotal data that a gluten-free diet might be helpful, but this has not been proven in large controlled studies.
There are some data from a study that was looking at all types of inflammatory arthritis, including rheumatoid arthritis and psoriatic arthritis, that olive oil was actually anti-inflammatory. This was a study that looked at the American diet and then a Mediterranean diet and then the Mediterranean diet with extra olive oil, and the findings suggested that if the patient was having the Mediterranean diet and added 15 cc of olive oil, that that was actually more anti-inflammatory than just the Mediterranean diet by itself—so not talking about a swishing of olive oil, but just adding more olive oil when you’re cooking that Mediterranean diet can actually be even more anti-inflammatory. There was no question from the study that the American diet was very pro-inflammatory.
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