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Lifestyle habits play an important role in the proper management of rheumatoid arthritis, so it is advisable to:
Do regular physical activity. Exercise is a very useful tool for preserving functionality and improving patient quality of life.
Eat a balanced and varied diet, such as the Mediterranean diet. To date, there is no evidence that any specific diet improves or changes the course of the disease. However, a balanced diet rich in dairy products and vitamin D is recommended to supplement the effects of chronic glucocorticoid use.
Maintain a healthy body weight. Being the proper weight helps prevent disease complications.
Avoid tobacco. This is a risk factor for developing the disease and is also associated to a worse response to drugs and poor disease progression.
Balance emotional factors. It is important to reduce stress and have personal and social resources that help you face the disease and live with it. These also encourage self-care habits and treatment follow-up.
Get adequate rest and leisure activities.
Working life. The current treatments allow the vast majority of patients to continue with a normal working life.
Sexuality. This is part of a patient's quality of life. During the remission stages there are usually no problems with sexual activity, and neither the medication nor the disease itself conditions changes in sexual desire. However, the presence of pain, stiffness, fatigue, and limited movement during flare-ups of the disease can have an impact.