Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic inflammatory disorder that mainly affects the joints of the body. It is an autoimmune disease, as its onset is triggered by a mistaken attack of the immune system against the cells of its own organism. In the case of Rheumatoid arthritis, the lining of the joints is affected.
In particular, the joint fluid is altered, which leads to a painful inflammatory process. Thus, over time, chronic systemic inflammation can occur. As the condition of the tissues worsens due to this recurrent inflammation and immune activation, bone erosion and joint deformity can occur.
Rheumatoid arthritis-related chronic inflammation may also damage surrounding tissues, including muscles, ligaments, tendons, skin, eyes, lungs, heart, and blood vessels. It is a disease that affects 0.8 – 1% of population and occurs two to three times more often in women than men.
The symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis
The signs and symptoms usually develop gradually, which is why Rheumatoid Arthritis is often not diagnosed in the early stages. These usually include the following:
- Pain, redness and swelling of the joints.
- Three or more sensitive and swollen joints at the same time.
- Muscle stiffness, which usually worsens in the morning or after physical inactivity and lasts for more than 30 minutes, with a history of previous episodes.
- Appearance of rheumatic nodules, like tight pieces on the skin, which are usually located on the elbows.
- Discomfort, fatigue, fever and loss of appetite may also occur due to the systemic inflammatory nature of the disease.
The Causes of Rheumatoid Arthritis
Rheumatoid Arthritis is characterized as a chronic idiopathic inflammatory disorder, of unexplained and multiple etiology. A variety of factors significantly reduce the efficiency of our cells, resulting in chronic inflammation and chronic autoimmune diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis.
There is evidence that the majority of patients have a genetic predisposition to developing the disease.
Lack of enzymes, hormones and micronutrients
In general, the real causes of autoimmune diseases, such as Rheumatoid Arthritis, are the lack or insufficiency of enzymes, hormones and other key elements of metabolism. Our body needs energy and building blocks in order to ensure its survival, to create new tissues and to be able to heal damaged tissues.
The nutritional status of the organism and its reserves of biochemical “fuels” play a major role in its overall health, the duration and the degree of healing of a lesion. The accumulated deficiency of these biochemical fuels (amino acids, minerals, vitamins, etc.) lead to biochemical diversion of the function of our cells, resulting in the occurrence of various problems.
Long-term exposure to irritating agents, such as environmental toxins, pesticides, food or environmental allergens and polluted air, is a toxic charge that accumulates in the adipose tissue of cells, resulting in dysfunction.
Oxidative stress, Hormonal imbalances, food sensitivities, injuries, infections, smoking
There are additional causes, which can trigger the onset of Rheumatoid Arthritis. These can be related to oxidative stress, hormonal imbalances, food sensitivities, injuries, infections and smoking.
The effects of Rheumatoid Arthritis
Rheumatoid Arthritis, especially when it develops into a serious stage, can have a severe impact on the patient’s daily life, work environment and interpersonal relationships. The fear of physical disability and / or joint deformities has a catalytic effect on the individual’s psychology, while at the same time it is complicating the progression of the disease.
Numerous studies show that fatigue in Rheumatoid Arthritis increases the chances of absenteeism from work and results in the difficulty of concentrating and in many cases the inability to complete the work. Furthermore, due to the disease, there is an increasing number of visits to doctors and other health professionals, such as psychologists and physiotherapists.
Classical Therapeutic Approaches to Rheumatoid Arthritis
Common treatment approaches for rheumatoid arthritis include the administration of NSAIDs, steroids and even opioids.
The action of anti-rhemautic drugs lies in the “softening” of the immune process. In this way, the inflammation is reduced and the degradation of the joints is slowed down.
Unfortunately, this type of treatment approach, while it is effective for some, only covers the symptoms of the disease and helps to temporarily relieve the patient of pain. Long-term use, in addition, can cause unpleasant side effects, such as fatigue, rashes, intestinal discomfort, bleeding and anemia.
In general, conventional therapies for rheumatoid arthritis are aimed at combating the symptoms and trying to stop the development of further joint damage. What is not achieved, however, is the detection and elimination of the real causes that caused the biochemical diversion at a cellular level and led to the expression of the disease.
Etiological Treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis
The most effective way to treat Rheumatoid Arthritis is to combine therapeutic approaches. Although the administration of drugs is considered necessary during an outbreak, the most appropriate method for the treatment of various diseases, including Rheumatoid Arthritis, is to identify and eliminate the underlying causes of the disease.
Nowadays, there are specialized tests that determine the causes that led to the biochemical diversion and contributed to the occurrence of arthritis. Factors related to the prevalence of inflammation, deficiencies of enzymes, vitamins and other micro- and macronutrients are detected, while at the same time the body’s ability to produce energy is investigated. Also, adverse epigenetic factors are identified (stress, environmental toxins, etc.) that do not promote proper body biochemistry and can lead to the body deviating from normal function at a cellular level.
Based on the diagnostic findings, medical treatments and protocols are developed, with the help of which we can individually deal with deficiencies and remove the toxic burden. The treatment is shaped according to the dysfunctions and deficiencies that may exist and in this way the biochemical balance of the organism is gradually restored at a cellular level.
With these methods, the body’s ability to effectively manage inflammation is gradually restored. Thus, the course of Rheumatoid Arthritis can be radically changed and the quality of life of the patients can be enhanced. Furthermore, by adopting an anti-inflammatory diet plan in combination with appropriate physiotherapy, a comprehensive therapeutic approach to the disease can be achieved.
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