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Diet for Seronegative Rheumatoid Arthritis

By Martin Hughes ; Updated August 14, 2017

Seronegative rheumatoid arthritis is a type of rheumatoid arthritis in which you are negative for rheumatoid factor. notes that rheumatoid factors are immune system-generated proteins that target healthy tissues, such as joint tissue, throughout your body; some individuals who have rheumatoid arthritis may have low levels of rheumatoid factor in their bodies. Certain dietary approaches may be helpful in treating your seronegative rheumatoid arthritis, although you should always clear the use of this natural treatment approach with your doctor first.

Rheumatoid Arthritis

Although some people with rheumatoid arthritis may not possess high levels of rheumatoid factor in their blood, the signs and symptoms of this condition vary little between people who have seronegative and seropositive rheumatoid arthritis. Common signs and symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, states the Arthritis Foundation, include warmth, swelling, pain and inflammation in your affected joints, fatigue, mild fever and reduced appetite. Unlike seropositive rheumatoid arthritis, seronegative rheumatoid arthritis may cause asymmetrical joint pain, or joint pain on only one side of your body.

Dietary Strategies

An elimination diet -- a diet in which you eliminate foods for a period of time before slowly reintroducing them and monitoring their effects on your health -- may be a particularly important dietary strategy in treating your rheumatoid arthritis, state naturopathic physicians Michael Murray and Joseph Pizzorno, co-authors of "Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine." Foods that may be especially helpful in treating your rheumatoid arthritis include cherries, blueberries, sardines, salmon, herring, mackerel, fresh pineapple, oat bran and ground flaxseeds.


Eating sardines may help treat your rheumatoid arthritis. Sardines contain a significant amount of omega-3 fatty acids, which are known to reduce joint inflammation, notes nutritionist and biologist George Mateljan, author of "The World's Healthiest Foods." Omega-3 fatty acids may be particularly helpful in treating rheumatoid arthritis-related joint pain and stiffness, states the University of Maryland Medical Center. Sardines are also rich in vitamin B-12, vitamin D and protein.

Additional Information

A professional health care provider should always treat seronegative rheumatoid arthritis. Diet alone, though often helpful, may not be enough to eliminate your rheumatoid arthritis-related symptoms. To better understand the health risks, benefits and limitations of dietary changes in treating your seronegative rheumatoid arthritis, schedule an appointment with a clinical nutrition specialist. Additional scientific evidence is needed to validate the purported health benefits of foods traditionally used in treating this health condition.

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