I know about pain in the thumbs as that is where my hands used to hurt and I could not knit or crochet for a great long while. I decided to look at how to heal my hands by seeing which foods might trigger arthritis and were troubling me. Fortunately, I hit on what was my problem right away: it was milk and dairy. I’ve had trouble with this before but not my joints. Didn’t think it could be that as it is supposed to be good with calcium and all that. Plant milks can have as much and even more calcium than milk. I am sensitive to the protein in milk, not the lactose which they claim. It is the calcium which can accumulate in joints as the body lacks the enzyme which baby calves have, to digest it.
I tried all the milk alternatives and found one I liked and have several I can use for different reasons like cooking mashed potatoes I like with coconut milk. Almond has a lot of calcium, but coconut milk works best for me for just about everything. I started with sweetened flavor and now I can drink it plain. They even make coconut yogurt with the same kind of probiotics as dairy yogurt. And there is ice cream. Well, sort of. It is now too sweet for me, unless I cut it with unsweetened coconut yogurt. And it has to be zapped a few seconds in the microwave as it is lower in fat.
Since my gallbladder surgery, no way am I eating cheese even though I have enzymes which are supposed to help. I know when I have eaten wrong and get a pain in my ribs. Like now after eating too much Chinese food.
It will pass. But I do miss pizza, but not enough to get sick. It is a lot worse than over doing it with Chinese food, so I’ve heard.
The method of doing your own elimination diet is easy, pick the food you think is potentially a problem and stick with it several weeks. Usually if you are going to get relief, you’ll know it in one month. I’ve found (since I am 64 and passed menopause) that I am more sensitive to not only milk, but artificial sweeteners too. I break out in hives from Splenda, aka “Sucralose”. Who knew. They also make many people more hungry (like me). Aspartame gives me leg cramps (and I don’t like the taste of that one). But Splenda did taste just like sugar. I’ll eat an apple, makes nothing hurt. It is better for me to be able to do and I like what I eat still so it is easy to do. But I didn’t switch everything immediately.
I also limit how much bread I eat now, because I don’t burn as many calories.
I am not big on wanting to take a pill for everything unless there is no other way.
I wish you all the best and hope you find something that helps you. For all the stiffness for my fingers to feel normal again, took me about six months, and then I learned a bunch of knitting styles so I could switch styles, even knitting backwards. I also had incentive, I wanted to knit a new daughter-in-law a wedding shawl.
My strategy worked for me, my joints are normal-sized again.
Never lose hope of getting well and READ! Sorry I am verbose, I mean no harm and I hope something will help you.