7 Worst Snacks for Joint Pain

Snacks can provide a way to quench hunger or keep you going until you have your next meal. Snacks may also be a way to take in extra nutrients and ensure that the body is ready for activities. For instance, the right snack could create an opportunity to reduce stress, get energized, recover from boredom or possibly fight depression. For some people, snacking at the right time enables them to maintain an appropriate body weight. Just as there are good and healthy snacks, there are also bad and unhealthy snacks. There are certain snacks that could adversely affect the body, including exacerbating joint pain and inflammation. Thus, when snacking, it is essential to ensure you are not doing more harm than good. Especially for joint health, the right kind of snack could keep you pain free and agile.

So, could that snack you are biting into be the cause of pain in your joints? Have you noticed inflammation flaring up at a time that coincides with when you are consuming a particular kind of snack? Indeed, there can be a link between the foods we eat, including snacks, to various ailments within the body, such as joint pain and inflammation. It is essential that you do your best to avoid these snacks when trying to prevent or tackle joint pain and inflammation. There are a multitude of snacks available in grocery stores that use targeted marketing to exploit soft spots that consumers have, including taste, organic affiliations and healthy living.

However, despite these advertisements, some of these snacks can still be bad for your body. This is especially true for those who have joint pain such as arthritis. Snacking on the wrong type of snack at work or possibly at home could make symptoms become much worse. The ingredients in these “bad” snacks could also cause inflammation to develop and possibly spread or become worse. So, how do people cope, especially in the workplace where snacking can be quite common to get people through the day? Also, how do you push past the powerful advertisement and media attention that is given to certain types of snacks that are truly not good for the body? One way to address these issues is to become informed regarding snacks, and with such knowledge you will be more readily able to identify what type of snack is best for your joints! To help you identify the snacks that are specifically bad for joint pain and inflammation, the 7 worst snacks have been shared below.

#1 – Sugar Snacks

Snacks that contain processed or refined sugars can be incredibly bad for the body. These types of snacks include various kinds of candies, cookies, pastries and biscuits. Sugar-filled, chocolate-covered doughnuts, for instance, can be quite attractive to look at and may also send tempting messages to the brain. However, sugar can be a bad idea for the body, especially refined sugars. Similarly, sodas can contain a high amount of these refined sugars. For joint pain, these sugars in the body can make the situation worse.


Avoiding refined sugars is advisable. There can be alternatives to processed sugars, and the best alternative is the raw form of sugar, including organic maple syrup and honey. Sugar-free versions of snacks can also be a good idea. However, sometimes food manufacturers may trade one ingredient for another ingredient that is no better for your joints or general health. Sugar has been known to contribute to many health ailments. Read food labels carefully. The first few ingredients listed on a food item can tell you a lot about the product [1].

#2 – Chicken Nuggets

It is usually recommended that you consume a certain amount of protein daily, and chicken certainly provides you with a good amount. However, chicken nuggets can also come with unwanted ingredients such as saturated fats and high amounts of sodium.


Four or five pieces of chicken nuggets could easily get you consuming 200 to 250 calories and 2 g to 3.5 g of saturated fat, 400 mg to 700 mg of sodium, depending on the brand of chicken nuggets being consumed. Improved dietary strategies include the reduction of saturated and trans-fats. This could also help tackle inflammation that occurs as a result of unhealthy dietary patterns [2]. High amounts of saturated fats can be detrimental to good joint health.

#3 – Canned Fruit

Yes, fruit is usually a healthy snack option. However, do beware of fruit that is bought in cans. The canned fruit option can be convenient, but the problem with some types of canned fruit is the large amount of sugars added.


When consuming canned fruit, you could also be taking in additional refined sugars. In essence, you end up eating the not-so-healthy version of fruit. In addition, when food product manufacturers know that sweeteners like processed sugars will be used to sweeten or add flavour to the canned product, these food producers may be less likely to use high quality fruit in their canned products. Fresh fruit is always the better choice.

#4 – Potato Chips

We usually see these bags of chips sitting and waiting in grocery stores, packaged attractively and waiting to be eagerly picked up by consumers wanting to satisfy their cravings for tasty, salty snacks.


This popular snack combines high amounts of calories, high saturated fats and high sodium content in just a few ounces of chips. Another major problem with choosing chips as snacks is the fact that these types of snacks are not filling, so there is a high likelihood of consuming much higher quantities at any given time.  [3].

#5 – Wheat-Based Snacks

Many people have an intolerance to gluten. Gluten is found in wheat and in some cases, the consumption of snacks that contain gluten could cause allergic reactions to develop. Such reactions could include inflamed joints and pain in various parts of the body.


If joint pain and inflammation occurs after consuming snacks made from wheat, you may have a gluten allergy. If you do develop an allergy or intolerance to gluten, most snacks containing wheat will trigger your symptoms.

#6 – Frozen Snacks

Snack and food manufacturers have also found ways to market frozen versions of foods, including frozen sandwiches, pizza, burgers, pastries, fries and much more.


The appeal of frozen snacks is the convenience that these food products may provide. If you are tired from work and simply don’t feel like cooking, frozen snacks may seem like a perfect option. However, this may not be an option that is beneficial to your joints. It can be difficult to find healthy foods that are good for joint pain that are sold as a frozen snack.

#7 – Cheese and Crackers

Indeed, this may seem like the ultimate healthy snack. However, do beware of the high content of saturated fats that these snack products could contain. In addition, some cheese and cracker products also contain a large amount of sugar.


Can cheese and crackers still be a great snack? Yes, if you are choose options that contain healthy amounts of the right type of fat and minimal sodium.

The wrong kind of snack can increase your likelihood of joint pain and inflammation. Consequently, inflammation that occurs in the body can lead to various ailments, health hazards and diseases including arthritis, skin problems, allergies, cancer, heart problems, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), obesity, weight gain, the occurrence of tumors, asthma, cancer and other diseases. These ailments affect millions of people worldwide [4]. Eating the wrong types of fats can add unnecessary weight on the joints and put stress on the tendons and muscles [5]. Foods in their natural, raw and organic state are usually the best option.

Want to learn about the foods to eat when having joint pain? Then check out the Best Foods That Rapidly Slim & Heal In 7 Days program here:

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Rick Kaselj, MS