C B Mazzucca et al, 2022. Nutrition and Rheumatoid Arthritis Onset: A Prospective Analysis Using the UK Biobank, Nutrients, Volume 14 (8).
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a chronic inflammatory disease that affects the joints. The multifactorial etiopathogenesis of RA has been heavily investigated, but is still only partially understood. Diet can represent both a risk factor and a protective factor, based on some evidence that suggests specific properties of certain foods and their ability to increase/reduce inflammation. To date, the studies done on this topic provide discordant results and are heterogeneous in terms of design and cohort size. In this work, we investigated for the first time the relationship between nutrition and the risk of RA onset using a sample size of about half a million subjects from one of the largest publicly available biobanks that is the UK biobank. Results showed that oily fish, alcohol, coffee and breakfast cereals have protective roles in RA; whereas, tea can increase the risk of RA. In conclusion, the obtained results confirm that diet plays key roles in RA, either by promoting or by preventing RA onset and development. Future research should focus on unravelling the effects of dietary habits on immune-mediated diseases to establish better preventive strategies.
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