Chowing down on that greasy cheeseburger or slice of double pepperoni pizza may feel glorious in the moment, but knowing that you’ll be itching to work it off by clocking more time at the gym or by eating a salad the next day is kind of a buzzkill. And yet, we often indulge in fatty foods anyway.
Well according to researchers at Queensland University of Technology in Australia, a diet that’s high in fat and carbs could do far more than add to your waistline — it could lead to brittle bones and creaky joints, too.
In a study done on rats, researchers looked at whether or not there’s a correlation between fatty foods and simple carbs (like white starches) and joint pain. As it turns out, there is.
“Our findings suggest that it’s not wear and tear but diet that has a lot to do with the onset of osteoarthritis,” Professor Yin Xiao of the university’s health and biomedical department said. “We found that a diet containing simple carbohydrates together with 20 per cent saturated fats produced osteoarthritic-like changes in the knee.”
In fact, a high-fat, high-carb diet can create fatty deposits in our cartilage, which wears it down over time. As if there weren’t enough diet-related health risks to worry about already.
And in a cruel twist of fate, coconut oil has also been listed as an inflammatory, reminding us that while it’s important to stay up to speed on scientific developments, a well-rounded diet is usually the best course of action when it comes to living a healthy lifestyle.
The good news, however, is that there are several foods that have also been scientifically linked to preventing inflammation in the joints. Green, leafy vegetables like spinach, kale and Swiss chard top that list, as do salmon and the three Bs: blueberries, beets and broccoli.
Looks like it might be time to rethink that next burger and opt for a veggie patty instead… if you can resist.