Food And Arthritis

Add the RIGHT foods to your diet to REDUCE arthritic pain and inflammation.
Include the WRONG foods to your diet and INCREASE arthritic pain and inflammation.
My choice? A life-journey based on a low-oil whole-food plant based diet.
Whatever your current state of health, make yourself healthier - you deserve it. Start your plant based diet journey today.

Friday, 31 March 2017

Video showing dietary effects on my Rheumatoid Arthritis

Here is a video of a talk I gave recently to the Oxford Vegan Festival to help others understand the dramatic effect food can have on rheumatoid arthritis.  Some people who are cynical argue either I am a special case or some other excuse.  I am in no way special.  Also, apart from the fact I have so far had no surgery, my arthritis was as bad as it gets.  Had I accepted doctor's advice I would be in a mobility scooter today and probably be having changes made to my home to make it arthritis-friendly.

Other people argue that diets only work for some people, or that they have tried and failed - even tried the Paddison program and failed.  Well changing diet is not easy, that is a fact.  There are cultural reasons, family reasons, even your body is conditioned to sticking with the foods you have eaten regularly.

From people I have talked to, those who seem to fail on the Paddison program seem to have a particular medical history or a particular dietary history.  Beyond that doing the paddison program takes motivation, serious motivation.

The big question in my mind is, how much does someone want - and truly need - to get rid of their RA.  Some people are relatively happy on their medication, and that's fine by me.  For others who are very unhappy with medication, or have tried and failed on other diets then this fifteen minute video may be of interest.


  1. Hi Andy, thank you for sharing your journey back to health and fantastic you were are able to do yoga and even stand on your toes, I could never do that! I am 38 and have had RA since I was 21. I have been on all kinds of meds and my RA is pretty severe. I have changed my diet drastically in 2015 to all organic veg and meat, at the beginning of 2017 I began plant based with some meat, but the emphasis has been mostly on veg. I wanted to do the paddison programme, but my weight was so low that I was concerned I would loose even more weight. I need some drastic help and really want to try the paddison programme but am so scared of loosing too much weight. What kinds of things can you eat on a typical day? and can you give any advice on how to avoid weight loss please? Thank you Roma

    1. Hi Roma. Avoiding weight loss (or encouraging weight gain) is about calories. By this I don't mean to count calories. A rough idea of what calories your body needs each day is sufficient. The cronometer website is great at this. It can help you see how putting a meal together will not only meet your calorie needs but also fulfil your nutritional needs. So your goal in using the website is to add foods that increase calorific input. Typically I would be thinking about rice, quinua etc etc.

      There is no doubt that some people struggle coming of a meat diet. In my opinion, every time you say no to meat your body will heal faster. I would recommend stepping meat intake down and down slowly and replacing it with quality proteins from beans and pulses. I say "quality", because not only are these complete proteins but also the body metabolises the nutrition really well. The stepping is to allow the gut to adjust. That adjustment can take 3 months or more, since the gut rebuilds itself entirely every three months.

      I remember as a kid we had meat on Sundays that was reused during the week in soups in every more reduced amounts. So very different these days when people eat meat for breakfast, lunch and evening meals. My point is today's full-on meat protein in such quantities in such modern day quantities is the source of many arthritic and other chronic disease issues.

      These days each day I start with a bowl of yellow porridge. This has water, a spoon of turmeric powder in it and a good sprinkling of fresh black pepper and some fruit on top. Today's fruit was some raisins. I cook this in the microwave.

      Lunch is often hummus with raw broccoli dipped in. Evening meal is a what I call a stewp. That is onions & garlic cooked in water, then beans or pulses added. Then add root vegetable and chopped broccoli stems, and finishing off in the last five minutes with veg that need little cooking such as spinach. The whole can be flavoured with herbs and spices to suit. It is all cooked in a large heavy pan on a low heat and takes less than 30 minutes including all chopping etc etc.

    2. thanks again Andy. Do you eat the same meal each day, more or less? and where's the best place to get recipes for this type of cooking? How long do you think it will be until I see a reduction in pain and swelling. I am doing well in that I haven't got pain everywhere, but the pain I do have in my knees is excruciating. I am desperate at this point!

    3. For more recipes I love Chef AJ's channel on youtube.

      Pain and swelling reduction is a hard battle and a very individual one. There are specific things that will happen. For instance now, with a relatively clear and healthy body if I eat something that causes a reaction then I will find that manifests overnight and largely dissipates by the time I arise. There is science to back this up. CRP, the main protein influential in pain and inflammation explodes in the body when under attack and splatters around the blood stream. If there are no further incidents causing more reactions then the 18 hour half-life of the CRP protein means its rise and fall in the body can be predicted.

      Many moons ago when I started the Paddison Program I realised I needed intense support to nurse me through difficult days. Even six months of improvements in I hit a road-block and needed support and advice. When you are in intense pain and fatigue moral support and relevant advice can be critical to success.

      A key to success is working out which foods are really causing reactions. I don't trust in allergy tests, rather the definitive elimination process that paddison recommends is just that - definitive. Allergy tests can be useful pointers but they can bring about red herrings.

  2. You mention you have humous but that has olive oil, is it still ok to have?

    1. Hummus: I prefer to make my own if I have time, in which case it may just be vinegar, lemon juice, garlic and chick peas. If I buy from a shop I will go for a reduced oil version where possible. I expressly won't buy one that says "olive oil" on it. Our society has a love affair with olive oil that has nothing to do with health, rather more to do with a higher price tag.