Has anyone giving up Chocolate? Or anything else as result of RA

Has anyone giving up Chocolate? Or anything else as result of RA

I am putting this one out as I am so craving chocolate. When I was diagnosed with RA I decided to give up sugar (as told increases inflammation).

I am now dairy free, sugar free, gluten free and it's been testing to say the least.

I went to the supermarket trying to find a 'healthy'ish' bar. Found nothing, tried Amazon, no luck - so it looks like a trip to Whole Foods (getting desperate - lol)

Is anyone missing chocolate? Eating Chocolate (which brand, dark or milk?) Or even replaced with something other? Love to have your feedback.

Happy Easter x

59 Replies

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  • Excuse my error meant to say 'given up' 😬Wish we could pull back posts ....Hessie x

  • On a post you've written just go to the bottom of the post & you'll see V next to the Like button, tap on that & select edit, that tajes you back to the original text template & off you go. If it's a reply to another members post again there's a V next to the Like button at the bottom of your reply, tap on that then select edit & off you go again.

  • Yeah ! Thank you for sharing good to know.

  • I haven't yet but I do need to get my diet in check! Well done for committing to doing it. In terms of bars-have you come across nakd bars, no gluten or diary and natural sugars from fruit-depends how strict you are being! Hope you find something to reduce the craving!

  • Thanks for the update. I did not realise Nakd made chocolate bars. Shall check those out too. I was strict on the onset of my diagnosis, bit now feel need to enjoy life and the odd treat too. All the best.

  • Hi Hessie - You actually can edit a post . Go to the little down arrow to the right of "Follow Post" at the bottom of your message and click on it. One of the options is to "edit" . You can make your changes, then save them.

    As for chocolate, since we don't use carbs much, we don't do sugar either. But dark chocolate - 75% or higher will probably be pretty good for you since it has antioxidants and some other good stuff in it. I know what you mean though. Also, you can make a Keto Lava cake with dark chocolate powder and an artificial sweetener. It is my go to desert when chocolate or desert cravings hit. Here is the recipe - tasteaholics.com/recipes/lo...

    Enjoy! I sure do!

  • Wow thank you so much - I am going to try out that recipe looks great. Been looking for a good grade chocolate as you rightly point out 75% is best and Is chocolate with added benefits. All the best.

  • I do have a small amount of 85% dark chocolate, Sainsburys does a pack that contains five small bars. Does it for me. Happy Easter. 🐣πŸ₯🐰

  • Sainsburys seems to be the people's choice. Love the fact it is 85%. Time to get down there. Have a pleasant day.

  • Nope, don't intend to either! I don't have any other vices so choc will stay & I'll fight anyone who tries to take mine off me. Glib answer I know but I don't sign up to non dairy brigade, we need some calcium & it's provided to us in dairy so as long as we don't go silly & eat so much it's unhealthy for us then that's our bones taken care of, particularly those of us on steroids long term.

    I'm osteopenic/borderline osteoporotic & managed to keep at that level around 6 years, in fact my last DEXA scan score was improved on my previous one two years before. I am prescribed AdCal-D3 but haven't had bisphosphonates for 3 years so I can only attribute my scan results to diet & daily calcium/D3 med. Of course this may not work for everyone but I feel with this disease if you've a craving let yourself go, fulfil that craving! 🍫πŸͺ🍦

  • On chocolate my opinion doesn't really count as .........shock horror.....i don't like it! But if I did like it I'd eat good quality dark chocolate not the Ukky brown bars called milk chocolate!

    I agree with nmh.....in 18 years of having RA I have given up virtually nothing......OK I have had some freaky times on some Dmards, but my Rheumy just smiles when I ask about exclusion diets & says if I want to stop eating X,Y or Z.....that's fine....but he has never known a case of complete remission from RA through diet.

    In 18 years I have only had 3 rheumatologists & they have all said the same.

    On the other hand too much sugar or fat is ....to my way if thinking .....obviously not good for anyone ! If you really want to eat the right thing for a healthy diet & like most people are not sure what that means.....make an appointment to see a qualified medical dietician & go forward from there.

    Happy Easter all.........enjoy your Easter Egg ( not eggs!!!)

  • Okay, not to be too contrarian, but has your doctor known anyone to give up and stay off of certain foods for a prolonged period with the hopes of stemming RA through diet? All these doctors who tell us that a change in diet will only leave us cranky and still in pain... I mean, sure they might be right, but has anyone been told that, changed their diet anyway, and had improvement without telling their doctor?

    I felt tremendously better after following an anti-inflammatory diet (Meals That Heal Inflammation by Julie Daniluk), and then paleo (Primal Blueprint by Mark Sisson), with nutrient-focused tweaks (Perfect Health Diet by Paul Jaminet) and then autoimmunepaleo (The Paleo Approach by Sarah Ballantyne) and felt tremendously better, and my labs showed it too, but I didn't dare mention my dietary changes to my rheumatologist and let him think that the drugs were working magically instead (somehow I had just hoped he would think my body was magically healing itself - especially with how much he derided naturopaths and elimination diets as quackery).

    Anyhow, I say all this after a full glass of red wine and having eaten 3/4 of a Ferrero Rocher bunny (I would have eaten it all had my 7 year old not already ecapitated it!). I couldn't stick to the AIP and went over the deep end nutrition-wise with house shopping and moving, among other things. I also got tired of being the weird one who wouldn't eat anything at the restaurant. I wish I had stuck to my guns though, especially now that I am 20+ lbs heavier... Maybe after the Easter chocolate has disappeared...

  • Must admit I haven't asked if my Rheumy has known anyone who has told him they have benefited from changing diet! He just said it's worth a try if you want to......I didn't!

    But over 18 years I honestly haven't found any foods appear to bring on a flare. Although as a child I was constantly covered in urticaria & swollen eyes & lips,variously blamed on any old food I'd eaten a few hours earlier.....to this day my lips swell up,if I drink from a certain type of plastic glass...so as I don't know what type of plastic a glass is made of I just don't drink out of plastic. I'm a real nerd & have a collection of tops from sports bottles that I know won't affect me & secrete them in the glove compartment & in my luggage when I travel!

    I eat & drink most things...but I guess I should be thankful I have a small appetite which means I don't put on weight easily ......& of course Rheumy joints don't like to carry weight do they...so maybe that is why I have only needed surgery on neuromas in my feet & carpal tunnel in my wrist? But I must admit I probably wouldn't have the will power not to eat if I was hungry.

    I've given up on trying to fathom this wretched disease, & am just thankful for now I seem to be plodding along reasonably comfortably.


  • That's great. I've decided that the following things can bring on a flare: sugar, dairy, gluten, alcohol, staying up late, stress, and seemingly nothing at all.

  • Yup.....that's just about right!

    So we might as well eat & drink what we like & just envy the people with the will power to eat 'ealfy'!

  • Yeah - I love chocolate... Try to keep it dark, but every now and then I break bad and have some chocolates - mmmmm

    Like you I need and love my dairy, especially yogurt

    And you are right nomorheels - I find if I get a craving I might as well go ahead and give in, or like the old comic strip Cathy, I will eat everything else around trying to get rid of the craving, and end up eating it anyway - ha ha

  • Break bad πŸ˜‚ I did give in and no regrets either ! Have a fab day.

  • Good! I woke up to 3 Easter eggs & a big bunch of flowers this morning. Spoilt? Me? No.......! πŸ˜‰

    Have a lovely day.

  • Loved your reply . I think I went overboard with my restrictions, hence my craving. Read too many sites that said avoid this and that - but gosh we need to live and spoil ourselves now and again, time to fulfil my cravings, chocolate it is. Thank you 😊

  • It's all about a happy medium, life's too short to deny yourself choc!!! I think as long as you recognise what food, if any, makes you uncomfortable you can form your own eating plan. What works for one person doesn't mean it will work for you. I remember my m-i-l made herself really ill on the cabbage soup diet because it worked for her sister.

  • I started off doing exactly whatvyou are doing. No Dairy gluten free etc. Now I have started to introduce the food I like. First thing was Dark choc. Yum. You can't do without everything life's not worth loving if you do. I find milk is bad for me but I can get away with Some dairy. Ie choc and yogurt. Hope this helps. Also avoid night shades.

  • Thanks Paula - well started to love life's more as now chocolate is back in the mix. Well my dr said I need to put on a bit of weight and chocolate will help me do just that 😊- he he. Have a super day.

  • Tesco do an 85% cocoa dark chocolate bar if you really need a hit!

    I could give up most things, but not chocolate.

  • you can get dairy free choc from Morrisons - not sure if its sugar free I ate it that quickly !! Ive given up dairy - for about 6 months now and last week had a bar of cadburys choc - it was disgusting - tasted of cardboard and made me ill and gave me a dreadful headache - never again but the dairy free choc buttons are ok. Ive also given up gluten dairy sugar etc and I will say that I do feel Better - I am a veggie but have been for just about for ever also given up Soya I read that it wasnt good for you !!! I try anything to feel better - Im just on plant food. Good luck and let people know how you get on on this site xx

  • Thanks Lorna - brought back in a good chocolate - I feel happy as restricting myself was too much. So slowly I am bringing back what I miss most. I eat mainly fruit, veg and a ton of fish (wild salmon not farmed), yes, and no Soya for me either! Enjoy your day.

  • Give yourself a treat...it's Easter!

    There are all sorts of lovely vegan chocolates out there. I usually eat a bit of this.

    Also, life is so difficult, particularly with long term illness, so don't be too hard on yourself.

    I eat a very healthy diet most of the time. Sometimes I enjoy flying of the wagon!πŸ˜„

  • I concur - I ate chocolate it was so good. Oh it wasn't vegan either let's see what the body says lol 😌 Have a super day.

  • Give up chocolate because of RA? Haven't we given up enough of our lives?...... some people claim diet helps control their RA, it doesn't control mine.

    Happy Easter

  • Exactly Suzanne.....I have never even tried cutting out anything.....I reckon if i wasn't 'allergic' to dairy before I was diagnosed with RA I didn't suddenly become sensitive to it afterwards.

    But that said I don't eat 6 yoghurts & a kilo,of cheese every day......Good Friday lunch today will be poached salmon, broccoli, ,courgettes & sweet corn. Pop it all in the steamer et voila a tasty lunch in 20 minutes & only two steamer baskets to wash up!

    Hope your weather has improved in Vancouver.......here the temp has dropped to around 50Β°f......& my central heating is back on! So unless things perk up all those pretty Easter Bonnets will be staying in the cupboard on Sunday!

    Happy Easter to you too!

  • Your Good Friday lunch sounds great AgedCrone.

    It's bloody cold here. The temp here is 12 Celsius so we are as cold as you..and the rain.... oh the rain. When will it stop?...

    Easter just doesn't seem that exciting without young children running about....so I think I need to push my son into finding a wife to give me grandchildren...lol

  • Do you really want to go crawling around a muddy garden looking for inedible yukky eggs , then cuddling the kids when they throw up after eating too many?

    Forget that, I have a nice glass of RosΓ©, heating turned up & a good book.....much more fun!


  • oh...you are right AC. I'll forget the future grandchildren and enjoy a glass or 2 of wine...yum

  • Sainsbury's do a Free From chocolate bar -no gluten or dairy. I don't think you are likely to find one that is low sugar too. Otherwise dark chocolate as others have suggested. I just reason that sugar, dairy and gluten contribute to inflammation but a small amount occasionally will not have a huge effect. I would just have some of the chocolate you crave and enjoy it. Happy Easter.

  • Thank you Ann - I agree we need to enjoy life without too many restrictions and a bit of chocolate from time to time is okay too. Have a lovely day.

  • I know like everyone else a good diet is healthy especially if you have RA, and can bring many benefits especially to lower pain levels but personally I only drink coffee, eat loads of chocolate and enjoy life as much as I can. I only concessions I have is not to drink alcohol as much.

  • I so wish I could like this more than once. You've become my hero

  • I feel for you. Life without chocolate - a good one- would be awful. A square of dark chocolate with whole almonds in it makes me very happy. Alternatively, have you tried carob? I haven't because I'm self-indulgent but those who have seem to like it. It could be worth a try maybe?

  • During a lean time (& in desperation) I tried to make chocolate with the beans of the carob tree in our garden. It was thrown away, don't know where I went wrong but it was rubbish, absolutely horrible. Never tried the bought one though.

  • Oh bless you how ingenious! Your garden must have been a darn sight warmer than mine - plum trees aren't happy here. I can relate to a desperate need for chocolate, when the craving has been unbearable I have resorted to cooking chocolate which is vile. Never tried carob either, a friend did once on another friend's recommendation and declared it too revolting for words

  • No, not in the UK, it was when we lived in Spain, sorry Jan, should have said. We inherited the tree from the previous owner who used the carob pods to feed his goats. We'd piled all our money into starting the business so things were pretty tight at the time. I took ages to grind them into a cocoa-like power as well. If I'm honest I'm not even sure if they were suitable for human consumption! That's a shame you struggle with plum trees, we have a glorious Victoria which we'll have to leave when we move, it will be a great shame because it fruits for fun & has provided us with multiple jars of chutney over the the years from the windfall alone. Cooking chocolate, that takes me back! Mum wouldn't buy chocolate digestives so I tried to do my own with cooking chocolate (I was around 8 or 9), you can guess how they turned out & where they went!

  • Not a problem at all! I wonder if the carob made the goats smell any sweeter? Isn't amazing the lengths we go to to get a little luxury when times are tricky although your efforts put mine in the shade. Your Mum sounds rather like mine and it was slim pickings when I was growing up. We grow quite a lot of soft fruits and veggies here so I mustn't grieve the lack of plums too much, that wold be a bit greedy. In any case Himself is diabetic and chutney isn't allowed for hIm and the rest of the famity don't care for it. I have enough trouble unloading the jam I make. I try not to take it personally. Have you got a date for your house move yet? Exciting times but, excuse the lack of sympathy, I'm so glad it's not me again. 13 moves is more than enough!

  • I shouldn't have thought it did, the goat shed which was knocked down to become our lounge thankfully didn't retain the smell though! I envy you & your veggies, this next move is a stop gap, selling our house caught us unawares so the garden's not as big as we'd prefer but at least it's a bungalow & will afford us time to tour the UK & see where we'd like to eventually make roots. 13 moves?! Heck not sure I could have done that, this will only be our 3rd in nearly 32 years. One of these days we'll move into one that doesn't need work, though you always want to make your stamp on your home this one will test us so we'll escape whilst the dirtiest of building work is being done.

  • Many apologies NMH. What rotten manners and lousy memory I have. I have been trying to send a pm so I didn't hijack this thread but - drat.

  • Do you know I have a container full of the actual roasted chocolate beans from where the chocolate is derived. Already roasted - and when I open the container it smells divine ! I was tempted to make it into chocolate too just haven't got round to it. Like you, rather someone make it for me. Enjoy your day.

  • It's a shame just to have it sitting in a container when you think what glorious chocolate could be made with it isn't it? Though this is a US website (weights are in cups & lbs & ozs) I've used it before when looking for recipes, the chocolate torte is glorious! chocolatealchemy.com/

  • Great website thank you - looks like time to make my own - 😊

  • Dear buttonhater

    Thank you but I'm no hero. I refuse to give up coffee and chocolate but they don't seem to have much effect on my ra. Alcohol on the other hand does one pint of Guinness ( drunk solely for iron content) kills the next day. It doesn't stop me drinking I just make sure when I do nothing is planned for the next day.

    When on the odd occasions I do eat well I do feel alot better, but for me life's to short and I have no will power.

    Hope you feel better and in less pain soon.

  • Buttonhater -your post conjured this image in my mind of that bar of chocolate with almonds. Green and Black produce a really good one. This has added to my cravings lol 😊 Tried Carob - it's actually not too bad and good for you. All the best.

  • Dark chocolate 70% I have one square a night and relish it. I get Waitrose single source chocolate and it says how much sugar in each square on the packaging. I can't give it up! Also coffee, there's a research project at our local hospital which is showing that it's actually good for your liver.

  • Thanks for sharing. Chocolate has got to be a must for me so it's back in my regime for now. 😌

  • Dotty55

    Happy Easter everybody

    Hi Hessie

    Sainsburys do a dark chocolate bar sugar free I treat myself s 2 bars a week also keeps you regular excuse the pun don't eat to much at once or it will upset your stomach I also suffer with migraine and it keeps your weight down it is in red package they do one with nuts as well hope this helps happy Easter


  • Thank you Dotty - love the fact it's sugar free. Will give it a try.

  • Thanks Dotty - chocolate is wonderful - with nuts too wow. I am somewhat of a squirrel love nuts with a piece of chocolate - that's the icing on the cake. Have a super day.

  • No choc for me!

    I started Slimming World in mid Feb and am on my way to a stone and a half lost πŸ˜€ That's amazing for me, I had tried all sorts and couldn't get going.

    I see this as a lifestyle change not a diet for a fixed term. I haven't missed choc at all which is a bit of a miracle.

    I buy myself a bunch of flowers instead of treats - they last longer too (not that I've tried eating them!).

    Joining SW is all in aid of managing my weight, feeling more positive and taking pressure off those achey joints - but I do have to admit I feel so much healthier RA-wise eating more healthily πŸ˜€

    Happy Easter everyone xx

  • Hi Jem, I went from 10 stone to 8 stone ! I know not good. I miss my curves. I cut certain foods to manage the pain and am now introducing food groups back in. Hope all goes well with SW.

  • You will feel better loosing weight your knees and feet take a lot of beating if you are carrying extra weight walking is good for you if you have RA now I don't mean for you to walk for miles gentle walks 15 -20 minutes remember take your time that amount of walking every day only if the weather is dry RA is a disease that is aggregrated with extreme weather conditions I do find a hot pad or bottle where it hurts most does help to ease the pain My Dr has given me patches to help ease the pain you leave them on for 10 hours at I time I find them very affective I like a sweetie or a piece of chocolate when I am sitting watching the television at night but I don't go over the score I have heard in the past that dairy wood can cause your RA to flare up I just buy pure butter use olive oil for cooking and semi skimmed milke and have had osteoprosus for many year have had bone cement twice in my vertebrae And lead an active life don't fight your trouble you'll only hurt yourself have a day relaxing do nothing the next day you will be back to normal

  • Thank you Margaret. Lost too much weight so keen to put back on. At the moment extremely nimble. Interesting to read posts where the opposite has happened, weight gain. A bit of chocolate would probably benefit me!

  • Thank you all for your responses. I hope your Easter is going well too.

    I went to a delightful farmers markets - bought some of the best artisan chocolate. Handmade unique different flavours, such as green tea, some with orange, sounds quirky but seriously good (75% dark).

    Also bought from another purveyor where the chocolate contained pieces of homemade peanut butter (55% dark) πŸ˜‹. This woman's is so good she is supplying to reputable stores in London.

    I then went to visit my sister, we sat drinking tea and eating these wonderful chocolate treats, hmmm such bliss. I didn't care if I woke up the next day in pain either. (So far so good).

    Happy to say chocolate is back in my mix. On a positive note, chocolate has a huge benefit of making us happy, it sure did for me and my sis 🌀

    Here's to awesome days ahead! (With chocolate he he)

  • I don't know about the rest of you but half way through reading this I got the urge and picked up one of my chocolate bunnies and have started munching away. :)

    At this rate I will finish it soon, just as well I can eat what I like and not put on an ounce.

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