6 Best Fruits for Psoriatic Arthritis

Add these delicious, fresh treats to your PsA-friendly diet this summer. They may help reduce joint swelling and pain.

Medically Reviewed
best summer fruits for psoriatic arthritis mango kiwi avocado
Fight inflammation with fruits like mango, kiwi, and avocado.Canva; Everyday Health

When you live with an autoimmune disease such as psoriatic arthritis (PsA), you are always looking for ways to help reduce inflammation and oxidative stress (an overabundance of free radicals that can damage fatty tissue, DNA, and proteins in your body). Part of the solution this summer may be no farther than your backyard, farmers market, or supermarket: juicy, refreshing fruits.

Fruits Can Be a Healthful PsA Resource

“Just keep in mind that fruits are in no way a replacement for medical treatment. However, they can be a delicious part of your overall therapy,” says Bonnie Taub-Dix, RDN, author of Read It Before You Eat It: Taking You From Label to Table.

Remember to Read Package Labels

If you’re buying canned, dried, or frozen fruits, read the labels to make sure there aren’t added sugars or sodium. “These can exacerbate your symptoms and make comorbidities like diabetes and cardiovascular disease worse,” warns Taub-Dix.

6 Fruits That May Help You Stay Healthy

1. Avocado

Avocado is a good source of vitamin C and vitamin E — the latter is not found in a lot of other fruits. These vitamins have an anti-inflammatory effect, which means eating avocados may help decrease joint pain.

Try It Make guacamole, of course, or use avocado as a veggie burger topping. Taub-Dix also substitutes mashed ripe avocados for butter or oil in muffins, using a 1:1 ratio. “That can help decrease saturated fat intake, which is great for some PsA comorbidities such as heart disease,” she explains.

2. Cherries

Cherries — both sweet and tart — have polyphenols (plant-based compounds) and vitamin C, both of which have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, notes a review published in Nutrients in 2018.Studies have also shown that cherries may help improve the quality of your sleep. If you have PsA, you may be uncomfortable and/or in pain that can disrupt restorative sleep. Cherries can perhaps help with that,” says Taub-Dix.

Try It Cherries are so naturally sweet that if you use them for a cobbler, you don’t even have to add any sugar. (Some canned varieties do have extra sugar and sodium, so watch out for that.) Or serve them frozen for dessert.

RELATED: 16 to Foods to Eat or Avoid If You Have Psoriatic Arthritis

3. Berries

Berries are loaded with polyphenols such as anthocyanins, which produces their red, blue and purple colors; quercetin; and various types of phenolic acids that reduce inflammation, according to a review published in Food and Function in 2018. “They are also high in vitamin C, which is important for collagen building in skin and bones,” says Taub-Dix, adding that just eight strawberries have as much vitamin C as an entire orange.

Try It Cut them up and put them into a jug of water in your refrigerator. As you drink water throughout the course of the day, you’ll get the bonus of the berries’ taste and nutrients. Or throw them on a spinach salad with mandarin oranges and walnuts.

4. Pineapple

A traditional symbol of welcome, this hydrating fruit is loaded with vitamin C, as well as manganese, which helps maintain bone health. Pineapples are also a good source of the enzyme bromelain, which helps reduce inflammation and pain while also boosting the immune system. An added bonus: Pineapples may aid in digestion.

Try It Grill pineapple-chicken-cherry tomato kabobs with a little olive oil. Hollow out the pineapple and use the shell as a bowl for a fruit salad. Or core it from the top and use the shell to hold a pineapple fruit smoothie.

5. Mango

Mango contains vitamin C, polyphenols, and carotenoids, which can help reduce inflammation and protect against bone destruction, says Taub-Dix.

Try It This is another fruit that’s yummy when grilled. You can also cut it up and add it to cottage cheese or yogurt. Taub-Dix likes to put a slice in a hot cup of herbal tea. “It naturally sweetens your tea. When you’re done with your tea, you have this warm mango to eat. So good.”

6. Kiwi

This fuzzy fruit is high in vitamin C and antioxidants, which stimulate the immune system. It also contains a healthy dose of dietary fiber, which may reduce the risk of heart disease, a common comorbidity of PsA.

Try It Peel and slice it, then put it on top of a kale salad. Make kiwi chips: Slice thinly (it’s up to you whether you want it peeled or not), place on a baking tray, and bake at the lowest temperature for around 4 to 6 hours.