Feature Archive

Arthritis Diet Claims: Fact or Fiction

Pain from arthritis might lead you to try anything to relieve it, including a change in diet or taking supplements. Make sure you know what works first.

ByLeanna Skarnulis
WebMD Feature

Reviewed ByMichael Smith,MD

By presidential proclamation, we're living in the National Bone and Joint Decade, 2002-2011, and that means we should be seeing a surge in research into causes and treatments of arthritis and other diseases.

Meanwhile, many people with osteoarthritis (OA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) seek relief by buying the latest book or nutritional supplement claiming to relieve or cure arthritis, or they take advice from a neighbor who swore that eating gin-soaked raisins eased her symptoms.

How do you navigate this gray area of unregulated therapies to know if what you're doing can help or harm? WebMD talked with two experts who provided insight into the claims made for arthritis diets and supplements. Hayes Wilson, MD, is a rheumatologist in Atlanta and medical adviser for the Arthritis Foundation. Christine Gerbstadt, RD, MD, practices in Pittsburgh and is a spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association.