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Topic summary contributed by volunteer(s): Miranda

Animal products, including eggs, dairy, meat, and animal protein in general may increase inflammation. A single meal of meat, eggs, or dairy may cause a spike of inflammation within hours that can stiffen one’s arteries. Several factors may account for this effect, including heme iron, endotoxins, saturated fat, high bacteria load, TMAO, tapeworms, advanced glycation end products or AGEs, and NeuGc, a foreign meat that may increase the risk of heart disease and cancer.

A plant-based diet may improve or even eliminate arthritis symptoms. Specifically, turmeric may provide people with as much relief as medications for osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis. Avocados, berries and flaxseed oil have also been shown to be helpful in decreasing general arthritis symptoms.

Arthritis may be triggered by the Yersinia bacteria found in pork products. Avoiding animal products may prevent the onset of auto-immune conditions. Rheumatoid arthritis may also be improved with potassium supplementation and cilantro.

Animal foods are rich in purines, which are associated with increased gout risk. This is why gout patients may see an improvement in symptoms when they switch to a plant-based diet. Ingestion of cherries, or cherry juice, appears to be a side effect free treatment option for gout.

Osteoarthritis appears to respond to anti-inflammatory foods, for example, rose hips. Studies also have shown improvement of symptoms of osteoarthritis through the addition of açai berries to the diet.

Image Credit: Creatas Images / Thinkstock. This image has been modified.

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