The foods you choose to eat can either add fuel to the fire of inflammation or help extinguish it. In the body, inflammation may result in pain and soreness, and may be linked to weight gain, difficulty sleeping, and an increased risk for certain diseases including heart disease and cancer. Knowing which foods that can help with fighting inflammation can improve your overall health and well-being.
Basically, vegetables, certain fruits, healthy fats and spices are the most powerful anti-inflammatory foods. Including these regularly in your diet can help make sure your body feels and functions at its best. More processed foods that have added sugars and processed fats will tend to promote inflammation. This includes a lot of what we find at typical fast food places and many restaurants. Aim to eat less processed foods and include whole, natural items more often. The key is to find the right balance. Try to swap out a few of the not so good options in your daily diet for one of the better options below. Make a couple small changes at a time and notice the difference over time in how you feel.
- Fruits: Black berries, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, oranges, limes, grapefruit and lemon
- Fats: Chia seeds, flax seeds, salmon, tuna, sardines and other coldwater fish
- Herbs & Spices: Cinnamon, basil, oregano, all spice, cloves, ginger, rosemary, green tea, chamomile, onions, sage, thyme, turmeric (curcumin), coriander, chives, marjoram, parsley, spearmint and garlic
- Limit or try to replace some of these in your diet: Refined sugar (table sugar, foods with added sugar), processed foods, white grains such as white rice, and white bread, red meat, margarine, bacon and butter
RECIPE: Berrylicious Oatmeal
• 1/2 cup dry oatmeal (or 1 pack or plain instant oatmeal)
• 1 cup fresh blueberries, blackberries and raspberries
• 1 Tbsp ground flax seeds or whole chia seeds
• 1-2 tsp ground cinnamon
• 1 tsp ground ginger (or freshly grated)
1. Cook 1/2 cup of dried oatmeal according to package directions
2. Mix cinnamon, ginger and seeds into oatmeal
3. Top with fresh berries