Discover the Anti-Inflammation Way of Eating
Medicine isn’t the only way to fight inflammation. Your diet plays an important role too. Learn more about the health consequences of chronic inflammation, and what you can do to stay healthy.
Basic Facts about Inflammation
#1 Understand healthy inflammation.
Acute inflammation is natural and beneficial. Short-term swelling or fever are visible signs that your body is repairing itself after you break a bone or catch a cold.
#2 Reduce chronic inflammation.
On the other hand, ongoing inflammation causes tissue damage. Experts believe it’s an underlying factor associated with many health issues including Alzheimer’s, arthritis, and diabetes.
#3 See your doctor.
While there’s no single test to diagnose chronic inflammation, your health care team can address your individual concerns and recommend medical treatments and lifestyle changes that may help. Ask your doctor about how chronic conditions or food sensitivities may affect your risks.
Eat to Avoid or Lessen Chronic Inflammation
#1 Think Mediterranean.
Any balanced diet tends to reduce swollen tissues. Follow a program with specific anti-inflammation claims or just stick to a high-fiber Mediterranean diet.
#2 Consume more produce.
Plant products contain phytochemicals that promote tissue repair. Aim for at least 5 servings a day of vegetables and fruits.
#3 Minimize processed foods.
Refined carbohydrates, added sugars, and saturated fats have the opposite effect. Drink water instead of soda. Trade in white rice and pasta for brown rice and whole wheat versions.
#4 Go fish.
Fatty fish is loaded with heart-friendly Omega-3 fatty acids. Good choices include salmon, mackerel, and trout.
#5 Spice it up.
Give your salt shaker a rest. Experiment with a wide range of spices famous for their anti-inflammatory properties. Browse your grocer’s spice section for turmeric, ginger, and cinnamon. Grow your own garlic.
#6 Consider supplements.
While it’s preferable to acquire most of your vitamins and minerals from food, supplements can fill in certain deficiencies. For example, fish oil can provide Omega-3’s if you’re a vegan or just don’t like the taste of sardines.