Millions of people are affected by arthritis. Nearly fifty million in the US alone. And, while arthritis can originate in children, in most cases it attacks people as they get older.

But, particularly at risk are those over the age of sixty. In fact, by the time people reach sixty, nine out of ten will be affected by the disease to varying degrees.

There are basically two kinds of arthritis – osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. The former is the most common and is usually caused by poor nutrition and / or lack of exercise. The latter type is an autoimmune disease which attacks the joints and can occur at any age.

Rheumatoid arthritis is very destructive to the body. It causes swelling of the joints and a great deal of pain. As of yet, medical researchers have not discovered a cure for the disease. At best, doctors will prescribe medicines that can ease the pain and slow its progress. In many cases, anti-inflammatory drugs are also used to help with the pain and swelling.

The bad part about taking medications, however, is that they all have side effects that can sometimes cause a lot of distress as well. So, in many cases the choice comes down to suffering from the full effects of the disease itself or suffering the consequences of the medicines.

A third option that rarely occurs to people is that the cause of their arthritis may be related to one or more food allergies. While it may seem far fetched, medical trials have definitively proven that if a food allergy is not a cause of rheumatoid arthritis, in some cases it is definitely a trigger. Furthermore, when tested among older people, the removal of foods from their diet, that they have allergies to, caused a dramatic improvement in the health of many of them.

However, it is worth noting that the removal of certain foods did not improve all cases of rheumatoid arthritis. In fact, an allergy free diet only caused an improvement in about nine percent of the test participants. That is why food allergens can only be classified as one of many possible triggers for the disease.

Still, if you were one of the nine percent that it did help, you would think that it was a life saver. The fact is that you will not really know if following an allergy free diet will help you or not until you actually try it. If you have been suffering with the disease for more than a year, you owe it to yourself to at least give it a chance.