11 Anti-inflammatory Foods You Should Be Eating

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Anti-inflammatory medication is prescribed for many different chronic ailments, including arthritis, lupus, and it is also a component of chronic diseases such as heart disease and strokes. While these medications may provide quick relief, long-term use of some anti-inflammatory medications such as NSAIDs and steroids can actually weaken our immunity or cause unwanted side effects.

Perhaps the term diet isn’t appropriate here. Instead of considering this a diet, it’s best to look at it has a life-changing plan. I think I’ve proved I can’t stick to anything with the label “diet” on it. Instead of counting calories, you can simply add more of these foods/spices into your diet. Not only are they naturally good for you, they have the added benefit of reducing inflammation.

Anti-Inflammatory Foods

    1. Wild Alaskan Salmon: It’s no secret that salmon contains omega-3s and has been known to help numerous ailments. It is important to note that wild caught salmon has a much higher omega-3 content, than farmed raised. For those of you that are not fans of fish, there are many fish oil and omega-3 supplements that will provide these important nutrients.
    1. Kelp: Yep, I’m telling you to eat seaweed. It contains fucoidan, a type of complex carbohydrate that is anti-inflammatory, anti-tumor, and anti-oxidative. It is also high in fiber, which helps your body feel full and will aid in weight loss. It’s best to buy organic kelp and avoid some of the seaweed snacks that are loaded with vegetable oil and salt.
    1. Extra Virgin Olive Oil: This oil provides a healthy dose of fats that fights inflammation. It can also help lower the risks of asthma and arthritis, as well as protect the heart and blood vessels.
    1.  Blueberries: These tiny berries not only reduce inflammation, but they can protect the brain from aging and prevent diseases, such as cancer and dementia. It’s easy enough to throw some blueberries on oatmeal or in smoothies, or have them alone as a snack.
    1. Dark Leafy Greens: I’m it’s no shock that dark leafy greens are loaded with antioxidants. They are high in inflammation-fighting carotenoids, vitamin K and vitamin E.
    1. Turmeric: This Asian spice has received a lot of attention lately. It contains a natural 6217216441_4c282c4067_qanti-inflammatory compound called curcumin, which is often found in curry blends. Turmeric also has pain relieving properties. Among the other spices that can help with inflammation are oregano, garlic, and rosemary. If anyone has any recipes using turmeric that you want to pass along, let me know. I’m not big on curry, but I’m willing to try.
    1. Ginger: You may know that ginger is good for digestion and relieving nausea, but it also helps reduce inflammation and control blood sugar. I’m not a big fan, but I have found an herbal tea with ginger that I like.
    1. Broccoli:  This highly nutritious vegetable that contains anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer phytonutrients such as sulforaphane. It helps the body to get rid of potentially carcinogenic compounds.
    1. Green Tea: Containing anti-inflammatory flavonoids, green tea is something that should be in your diet. Recent studies have shown green tea can potentially have positive effects on everything from weight loss to liver disorders to to diabetes. It may even help reduce the risks of certain cancers.
    1. Sweet Potato: A great source of complex carbs, fiber, beta-carotene, manganese and vitamin B6 and C, these potatoes actually help heal inflammation in the body.
  1. Papaya: This fruit contains papain, a protein-digesting enzyme. Together with other nutrients such as vitamin C and E, papain helps to reduce inflammation, and improves digestion and healing from burns.

Food to Run From

It’s pretty basic knowledge that it’s best to try and limit processed foods, sugar, and trans-fats. With inflammatory issues, dairy is also tough on the body. It has a common allergen that can trigger inflammation, as well as breathing and stomach issues.

Foods with aspartame and MSG are two common food additives that can trigger inflammation responses. There’s no time like now to give up those diet soft drinks and foods with these additives.

Choose grass-fed meats when possible. Feed lot animals consume large quantities of corn and soy, which may aggravate inflammatory issues. These animal are also injected with hormones and antibiotics, which can cause a whole range of other issues.

Using Common Sense 

Chances are if you are suffering from an autoimmune disease like lupus, fibromyalgia, or rheumatoid arthritis, eating an anti-inflammatory diet is probably not going to be a substitute for medication. It can however, ease day-to-day symptoms of inflammation that accompany those diseases. It’s worth a shot! Let me know if you feel a difference after adding more of these foods into your diet.

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