Nutrition and Weight Management

Choosing the right foods to stay healthy

When you have osteoarthritis, eating well is important for managing your weight and for ensuring that you are getting the right nutrients to keep you healthy.
Eat a balanced diet Eating a balanced diet that follows Canada’s Food Guide will help you to stay healthy. Eat a low-fat, high fibre diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables. These nutrients are thought to help people with osteoarthritis:

  • Omega 3 fatty acids
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin D
  • Calcium

When you're overweight, every extra pound puts 4 to 6 times more force on your joints.If you’re already experiencing the symptoms of osteoarthritis, weight loss may provide relief from pain and increase your ability to move and stretch. Making small changes to how and what you eat can help you to move towards a healthy body weight.

Healthy eating tips

  • Eat breakfast. 80% of people who are overweight skip breakfast. It “breaks the fast,” tells your body to wake up, and boosts your metabolism.
  • Savour your food. If you take at least 20 minutes to eat a meal, you won’t overeat. Eating slowly gives your body time to let you know when you’re full.
  • Eat smaller meals more often so you can burn off calories between meals. If you eat too much at one time, your body will store the extra calories as fat.
  • Use smaller plates, bowls, cups. We tend to consume what is on our plate or in our cup. By using smaller dishes, you can reduce your intake by 30%.
  • Don’t eat 2 to 3 hours before going to bed.
  • Avoid high salt / high fat snacks. Try to eat whole grains and non-processed foods.
  • Limit calories from drinks. Drink low calorie fluids like water, herbal teas, flavoured waters, and vegetable juices. Aim for 8 glasses or 2 litres a day. Limit high calorie drinks loaded with sugar and/or cream.
  • Eat your vegetables. Vegetables are low in calories and high in nutrients. Eat as many as you want, but go easy on dips and sauces.


Learn more strategies to help you eat better:

Emotional eating

Thoughts, emotions and behaviours can affect what and how much you eat. Living with a chronic condition can affect your mood and coping skills. Many people turn to food as a comfort. Understanding why you eat, also known as mindful eating, can help you identify triggers that can lead to weight gain.

Ask yourself:

  • Are you hungry?
  • Are you tired?
  • Are you bored?
  • Do you know when you are satisfied? Full?

Mindful eating is learning about HOW and WHY you eat, and less about WHAT you eat.Register for our free classes to learn more