Here Are the Top 15 Anti-Inflammatory Foods for Your Diet To Reduce Inflammation

Here Are the Top 15 Anti-Inflammatory Foods for Your Diet To Reduce Inflammation

Top 15 Anti-Inflammatory Foods to Reduce Inflammation

Inflammation helps the body heal from illness or injury. Top anti-inflammatory foods include onions, carrots, olive oil, and others.

If you’ve lived your life in a bubble, you’ve experienced inflammation. Some inflammation is good and helps the body heal.

Chronic inflammation is damaging to healthy tissues and organs. Adopting a healthy lifestyle, including an anti-inflammatory diet, is important.

When your body suffers illness or injury, your immune system responds. It increases blood flow to the affected area, and white blood cells multiply to fight the invasion. This response is acute inflammation. When the healing response takes weeks instead of days, it may be subacute inflammation.

Chronic inflammation lasts months or years. Many chronic diseases cause inflammation, putting the body under stress without fixing the underlying condition. Diseases include heart disease, diabetes, COPD, arthritis, and asthma.

Inflammation is associated with these diseases, but an anti-inflammatory diet will not necessarily make them go away. Still, it could help.

Why Reduce Inflammation?

If you’ve been eating a high-fat diet of mostly processed foods, switching to an anti-inflammatory diet may improve your overall health. You’ll still need help from your doctor to diagnose and treat your chronic conditions. Eating specific foods will not radically change your health.

For the best results, adopt an anti-inflammatory lifestyle, which includes:

  • Exercise. Get 150 to 300 minutes of moderate exercise a week and avoid too much sitting.
  • Mental health. Recognize any mental health issues and get help. Help can include counseling and self-help techniques.
  • Substance use. Don’t smoke and avoid excessive alcohol use.
  • Sleep. Get 7 to 8 hours of restful sleep each night. Talk to your doctor if you have trouble sleeping.
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What is an Anti-Inflammatory Diet?

An anti-inflammatory diet has two elements: foods to avoid and foods to include. The best anti-inflammatory diet is low in highly processed foods and unhealthy fats. Reduce your usage of fried foods, refined carbohydrates, saturated fats, drinks sweetened with sugar, red meat, and processed meats.

Include foods that fight inflammation. Foods that may reduce inflammation often contain:

Consider these foods that contain several anti-inflammatory substances:

1. Onions

The pungent compounds in onions are anti-inflammatory. Onions have fiber and vitamin C for additional benefits. They are low in calories and enhance the flavor of other healthy foods.

2. Carrots

Brightly colored vegetables are usually high in healthy plant compounds. Carrots contain beta-carotene, vitamin A, and fiber, which fight inflammation.

3. Olive oil

The Mediterranean diet is an example of an anti-inflammatory way of eating. It includes olive oil, which contains oleocanthal, a special anti-inflammatory compound. Choose extra-virgin olive oil for more nutrients. All oils are high-calorie foods.

4. Beans

Beans are a low-cost source of protein and contain anti-inflammatory compounds. They are rich in minerals and fiber. Choose your favorite type of beans.

5. Walnuts

Walnuts are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, selenium, and vitamin E, which fight inflammation.

6. Blueberries

Blueberries contain compounds called anthocyanins that may reduce inflammation. They also contain various vitamins and minerals.

7. Tomatoes

Tomatoes are low in calories, high in vitamin C, and in the nightshade family. No studies have shown that nightshade vegetables increase inflammation.

8. Salmon

Salmon is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids. It is relatively lean and a good addition to your diet. Limit consumption to 12 ounces of canned salmon per week.

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9. Flaxseed

Flaxseed is beneficial for inflammatory conditions. It contains phytoestrogens, so ask your doctor before using it if you have hormone-related conditions.

10. Spinach

Spinach contains vitamin K, vitamin A, vitamin C, and various minerals. It is low in calories.

11. Cherries

Cherries have antioxidants and increase uric acid in urine, beneficial for gout.

12. Turmeric

Turmeric contains the anti-inflammatory compound curcumin. It can be used in various dishes and drinks.

13. Mango

Mango is high in antioxidants, vitamin C, vitamin A, and minerals.

14. Brown rice

Brown rice is rich in fiber and has a nutty flavor. It’s gluten-free and available in quick-cooking varieties.

15. Brussels sprouts

Brussels sprouts are high in vitamins C and K, and low in calories. They can be prepared in various ways.

Takeaways about Anti-Inflammatory Foods

If you don’t like a particular anti-inflammatory food, look for another option in the same category. You can buy supplements, but food sources are often better as they provide a variety of nutrients.

Expanding your diet to include more anti-inflammatory foods is not difficult. Many healthy foods can be delicious when properly prepared.

Sources:

– Arthritis Foundation: "Anti-Inflammatory Diet Do’s and Don’ts," "The Ultimate Arthritis Diet"

– Harvard Health Publishing: "Foods That Fight Inflammation," "Why all the buzz about inflammation — and just how bad is it?"

– Mount Sinai: "Flaxseed," "Nutrition and Your Immunity"

– Oregon State University, Moore Family Center Food Coach: "Inflammation: Is it the super hero or the villain?"

– Produce for Better Health Foundation: "Health and Wellness Resource Guide for Fruit & Vegetables"

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– UChicagoMedicine: "What foods cause or reduce inflammation?"

– USDA Agricultural Research Center: "Eat fish! Which Fish? That Fish! Go Fish!"

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