Beverages in Rheumatoid Arthritis: What to Prefer or to Avoid

Nutrients. 2020 Oct 15;12(10):3155. doi: 10.3390/nu12103155.


Background: The role of nutrition in the pathogenesis of rheumatic diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis (RA), has gained increasing attention in recent years. A growing number of studies have focussed on the diverse nutritional contents of beverages, and their possible role in the development and progression of RA. Main body: We aimed to summarise the current knowledge on the role of a range of beverages in the context of RA. Beverages have a key role within the mosaic of autoimmunity in RA and potential to alter the microbiome, leading to downstream effects on inflammatory pathways. The molecular contents of beverages, including coffee, tea, and wine, have similarly been found to interfere with immune signalling pathways, some beneficial for disease progression and others less so. Finally, we consider beverages in the context of wider dietary patterns, and how this growing body of evidence may be harnessed by the multidisciplinary team in patient management.

Conclusions: While there is increasing work focussing on the role of beverages in RA, integration of discussions around diet and lifestyle in our management of patients remains sparse. Nutrition in RA remains a controversial topic, but future studies, especially on the role of beverages, are likely to shed further light on this in coming years.

Keywords: beverage; microbiome; nutrition; rheumatoid arthritis.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / etiology*
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / immunology
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / prevention & control
  • Autoimmunity
  • Beverages* / adverse effects
  • Coffee
  • Diet, Mediterranean
  • Diet, Vegetarian
  • Diet, Western
  • Disease Progression
  • Fasting
  • Feeding Behavior / physiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nutritional Physiological Phenomena / physiology*
  • Patient Care Team
  • Risk Assessment*
  • Sugar-Sweetened Beverages / adverse effects
  • Tea


  • Coffee
  • Tea