Inflammation is the immune systems response when the body becomes injured, irritated or infected – This is a normal reaction. Inflammation becomes a problem when it is chronic – The healthy cells of the body are attacked instead of being protected. Chronic inflammation contributes to cancer, heart disease and all chronic degenerative diseases.
Chronic inflammation begins with the foods you’re eating. Pop, chips, french fries, hamburgers and other Standard American Diet (SAD) “foods” all feed chronic inflammation in the body. There are many healthy foods out there which are anti-inflammatory.
Here are 5 of the top anti-inflammatory foods:
1. Turmeric – This root is what gives curry powder its yellow colour. Turmeric mainly gets its anti-inflammatory benefits from the compound curcumin found in this spice. Curcumin has also been shown to enhance recovery after exercise by reducing inflammation. Sliced up turmeric root or powdered turmeric can be steeped to make a healthy tea.
2. Green Tea – Polyphenols (plant chemicals that possess health benefits) in green tea act as anti-inflammatory agents in the body. Green tea can provide a healthy energy boost in the morning instead of drinking coffee.
3. Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO) – A compound in EVOO called oleocanthal prevents the production of pro-inflammatory enzymes. This works the same way as NSAIDs such as Ibuprofen. With these enzymes inhibited inflammation in the body is decreased. It is important to remember olive oil is no longer healthy once heated during cooking. This oil is best used raw in salad dressings.
4. Blueberries – These berries are a potent source of antioxidants. Antioxidants interfere with steps in the pro-inflammatory process. Therefore all foods high in antioxidants are anti-inflammatory. Blueberries are a great snack on their own or they make a wonderful addition to a smoothie.
5. Ginger – This plant root is in the same family as turmeric. It contains a group of phytochemicals named zingerone, shogaol, and gingerol that have anti-inflammatory properties. Sliced ginger root or ginger powder can be steeped into a anti-inflammatory tea.
So include these foods into your healthy routine to help decrease any chronic inflammation in your body.
Share in the comments your experiences with these anti-inflammatory foods.
To your health!