How To Eat An Anti-Inflammatory Diet

Acute inflammation shows up when you injure yourself, such as spraining your ankle or being stung by a bee, however did you know that systemic, chronic inflammation in your body is the driver of many degenerative health conditions, like diabetes, cancer and heart disease?

Processed foods, sugar, refined, white carbohydrates and trans fats are the main culprits for chronic inflammation, alongside stress.

The Anti-inflammatory Protocol

Avoid / eliminate:

  • All sugar
  • Additives & processed foods
  • Trans fats & margarine
  • Refined carbohydrates such as white bread, white pasta, cakes, biscuits, pastries, pies
  • Dairy products if you suffer from respiratory or skin conditions. Always choose organic dairy if you do eat it
  • All yeast containing foods such as extracts (Bovril, Marmite, Vegemite), essence of chicken, brewers and baker’s yeast, canned or powdered soups & stock cubes, consommé, gravies, sauces, etc
  • Excess alcohol (especially beer)
  • Solanacea vegetables i.e. tomatoes, white potatoes, aubergine, peppers – some people find these vegetable aggravate their inflammation in conditions like arthritis and psoriasis. See how your body responds

Anti-inflammatory foods to increase: 

  1. Organic, fresh foods
  2. Plenty of water and other fluids. Increase water to 2L per day 
  3. Essential fatty acids from cold water fish such as tuna and salmon, raw nuts & seeds and good quality oils such as flax, walnut, extra virgin olive oil 
  4. Cook only with coconut oil, grass-fed butter, ghee, animal fat or extra virgin olive oil to avoid free radical formation and rancidity created by heating polyunsaturated oils. Never cook with vegetable oils. Use cold-pressed vegetable and seed oils raw
  5. Fresh cherries, strawberries, blueberries, and other red-blue berries – they have antioxidant compounds that protect cartilage, tendons and joints. At least 10 fresh cherries and/or berries daily
  6. Antioxidant containing foods, like sweet potatoes, apricots, carrots, berries, mangoes, broccoli, avocado, onions
  7. Good quality protein such as wild fish, organic eggs and grass fed meat, organic tofu
  8. Vegetables including kale, cabbage, parsley, green-leafy vegetables, okra, fresh veggie juices
  9. Foods high in vitamin C (red cabbage, kiwi fruit, acerola cherries)
  10. Ginger and Turmeric – these inhibit pain-producing prostaglandins. and are packed with antioxidants 
  11. Garlic: Acts as an antibiotic and anti-inflammatory 
  12. Fennel, caraway seeds, alfalfa, garlic and fresh herbs for cooking
  13. Shiitake mushroom – boosts immunity. Add to soups, casseroles, stir-fries & salads 
  14. Complex carbohydrates instead of white ones (fibre-rich whole grains, fruits, and vegetables) Good grains include millet, oats, brown rice and buckwheat
  15. Nettle tea – has high mineral content & is anti-inflammatory
  16. Green tea – contains polyphenols that fight oxidation in arthritic joints
  17. Rosehip tea – drink 2-3 cups per day
  18. Celery and celery seeds – are a traditional food-based remedy that has been shown to help reduce inflammatory flare-ups as they are natural diuretics, decreasing uric acid 
  19. Pineapple (for its bromelain content) for anti-inflammatory action
Article by Jo Rowkins, nutritional therapist. Get in touch to see how I can help you.

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