Rheumatoid Arthritis Functioning Improved by Drinking

Drinking in moderation improves rheumatoid arthritis functioning.

Rheumatoid Arthritis Functioning Study

Researchers followed a total of 662 patients with rheumatoid arthritis for an average of four years.

Drinkers were compared to non-drinkers. Moderate drinking was linked with better rheumatoid arthritis functioning. This is consistent with other research. The ability to function well with the disease is important. It improves the quality and enjoyment of life.

The Journal of Rheumatology published these findings on promoting better rheumatoid arthritis functioning  .

The disease is also called RA and atrophic arthritis.

Rheumatoid Arthritis Functioning Facts

rheumatoid arthritis functioningA number of things may affect rheumatoid arthritis symptoms and functioning.

  • Smoking causes more swelling and pain in joints.
  • Drinking coffee may make some RA medications less effective. Ask your doctor.
  • Changes in the weather. Barometric pressure and temperature changes can effect pain.

There are a number of signs of possible rheumatoid arthritis.

  • Sprains or other joint injuries that are slow to heal.
  • Pairs of painful joints. That is, matching joints on both sides of the body.
  • Tingling or numbness in the hands.
  • Stiff joint pain that does not go away after moving about for about an hour or so.
  • Pain or inflammation around the front of the feet.
  • Locked joints.
  • Firm lumps (nodules) under the skin near the arthritic joints.
  • Dry eyes, mouth, nose, throat, or skin.

The take away message? Drinking alcohol in moderation reduces pain and improves rheumatoid arthritis functioning.


Lu, B., et al. Association of smoking and alcohol consumption with disease activity and functional status in rheumatoid arthritis. J. Rheumatology, 2014, 41(1), 24-30.


Maxwell J., et al. Alcohol consumption is inversely associated with risk and severity of rheumatoid arthritis. Rheumatol  (Oxford), 2010, 49, 2140’“6.

Nissen M., et al. The effect of alcohol on radiographic progression in rheumatoid arthritis. Arth Rheummatol,  2010, 62, 1265’“72.