(dailyRx News) Obesity puts a strain on your body. If you have arthritis, the excess weight of obesity can increase the pain and damage caused by your disease. If you are obese and have arthritis, it is time to lose weight.
Obese people with psoriatic arthritis may have more trouble controlling their disease.
However, patients who eat a low-calorie diet may be more likely to achieve minimal disease activity - an important measure of psoriatic arthritis that indicates fewer symptoms.
In 2009, Dario Di Minno, MD, of the University of Naples Federico II, realized a troubling fact: obesity rates were high among psoriatic arthritis patients.
According to Dr. Di Minno, his recent study goes beyond the 2009 finding. He and his colleagues wanted to see if diet could make it easier to achieve minimal disease activity in obese psoriatic arthritis patients taking anti-tumor necrosis factor (anti-TNF) drugs.
They found that eating a hypocaloric, or low-calorie, diet helped patients control their disease.
"The results of our study suggest that obese patients with psoriatic arthritis who stick to a hypocaloric diet have a greater chance of achieving treatment goals," says Dr. Di Minno.
They found that patients on a low-calorie diet were more likely to achieve minimal disease activity after six months of anti-TNF treatment, compared to patients eating a normal diet.
These results support similar findings from another study by the same authors. When they compared 135 obese psoriatic arthritis patients to 135 normal weight patients, they found that obese patients were less likely than their normal weight counterparts to achieve minimal disease activity.
The results of the current study, which included 138 obese psoriatic arthritis patients, were presented at the 2012 Annual Congress of the European League Against Rheumatism. The study still needs to be reviewed by a body of peers.