What Foods Can You Eat That Are Anti-Inflammatory?
As a nation of people, we live with so many chronic health issues, and so many of them are related to inflammation.
Most people aren't aware that inflammation is a common denominator in such conditions as:
- IBD - Inflammatory bowel disease
- Heart Disease
- High Blood Pressure
- Hormonal Balance
- Brain Fog
Inflammation, on one hand is good, because it helps the body defend itself from injury and infection. We have all seen how our immune system kicks in when we have a little cut...the injury can become a little red and swollen...this is the inflammation jumping in to facilitate the healing process. This is when inflammation is good and normal. But it's not good when there is too much inflammation, which causes the immune system and other systems of the body to not work properly, leading to poor health and chronic conditions such as the ones we've listed above.
Diet can play an important role in controlling the inflammation that can, but shouldn't control us.
Today's eating habits, for a great many us, are very high in carbohydrates, refined sugar and unhealthy fats, which may lead to increased inflammation. So rather than increase the inflammation, we need to cut back on overly processed, high sugar content foods, and eat and abundant variety of fresh vegetables, moderate levels of fruits and foods with omega-3s (fish and flax oils).
So, I guess we should ask ourselves, "Do I want to eat something that will fight inflammation, or do I want to eat something that will trigger it?"
These are foods that have been known to fight inflammation...
- Berries - Berries are packed with minerals, fiber and vitamins. They contain antioxidants which may help reduce the risk of heart disease, boost immunity and reduce inflammation,
- Broccoli - Although not everyone's favorite, it is rich in antioxidants, which may decrease your risk of heart disease and cancer.
- Peppers - Chili Peppers and Bell Peppers are both full of vitamin C and antioxidants, and along with reducing inflammation and may also lead to healthier aging.
- Fatty fish - All fish are good for you, not only because they have omega-3 fatty acids and are a good source of protein, but some types of fish are even better for you because they help prevent inflammation, heart disease, metabolic syndrome, diabetes, and disease. These types of fish are:
- Mushrooms - Not all mushrooms are created edible, shiitake, portobello and truffles, are a few that are. They are very low in calories, rich in B vitamins, and contain phenols and antioxidants that protect from inflammation. Mushrooms are more effective if eaten raw, but if you must cook them, cook them lightly.
- Turmeric - Turmeric is a strong spice used in Indian cuisine, and contains a powerful anti-inflammatory called curcumin. It can help reduce inflammation in arthritis and diabetes. In order to get enough Turmeric in your diet, you may need to take supplements containing it.
- Dark Chocolate and Cocoa - Here's one you're going to like...Dark Chocolate and Cocoa are not only delicious, but are strong in antioxidants, and can reduce your risk of disease and increase your chances of healthier aging. The important thing to remember is when you are choosing some Dark Chocolate you need to choose some with at least 70% cocoa in it, that's where you'll find the most anti-inflammatory results.
- Grapes - Grapes contain many health benefits, they can help decrease inflammation, diabetes, heart disease, obesity, Alzheimer's, and eye conditions.
- Green Tea - Green tea is considered one of the healthiest drinks. Containing EGCG (epigallocatechin-3-gallate), an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant, it can reduce your risk of inflammation, cancer, heart disease, Alzheimer's, obesity and more.
- Avocados - Avocados are considered a superfood because they are rich in magnesium, potassium, fiber and heart-healthy monounsaturated fats. It protects against inflammation and reduce the risk of cancer.
- Extra Virgin Oil - Here is a healthy fat you can eat! Containing monounsaturated fats, it is known to lower risk of brain cancer and heart disease, along with other serious health conditions.
- Tomatoes - Tomatoes are packed with great nutrition. They are high in potassium, antioxidants, and Vitamin C, and can help lower weight, protect against cancer, and reduce inflammation. Don't consume if you have a nightshade sensitivity.
- Cherries - Everyone loves cherries...they are rich in inflammation fighting antioxidants and lower your risk of disease.