It seems that all we hear about nowadays is the word inflammation but what does it mean? Do I have it? Can I get rid of it? What does it do?
Inflammation can be as simple as the swelling in your knee from falling or the redness around a cut but inflammation can also be in our bodies, presenting no obvious signs. Inflammation in some cases is good because this immune response also promotes healing. It becomes problematic when our body's cells are attacked by our own immune system.
Inflammation is at the root of may diseases including, cardiovascular disease, arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, diabetes, and more. There are lifestyle factors that go into reducing inflammation and one of the big ones is nutrition!
There are a bunch of foods that have anti-inflammatory properties and eating well in general is going to promote overall wellness and help with disease prevention. You want to make sure you are eating whole foods that contain healthy fats, particularly essential fatty acids, a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, grains to make sure you are getting all broad spectrum of minerals and other nutrients and again, healthy whole foods that contain antioxidants.
But some of the foods we are eating may actually be contributing to inflammation such as sugar, refined carbohydrates, processed food, fried foods, soybean oil and many more!
Getting lots of fruits and vegetables in your diet is a great start but here are some more specific sources of anti-inflammatory foods/food groups:
- Broccoli - high levels of magnesium and potassium, carotenoids and flavonoids.
- Swiss chard - high levels of vitamin K, A and C
- Beets - high magnesium and potassium levels
- Celery - high levels of potassium
- Pineapple and papaya- contains bromelain and quercetin.
- Blueberries- for a long time blueberries have been known as an antioxidant powerhouse. They contain quercetin.
Phytonutrient rich foods:
- Broccoli, beets (see above)
- Flaxseeds (see below)
- and more!
- Turmeric - curcumin is the active anti-inflammatory property.
- Walnuts, salmon, flaxseed, chia seed and hemp seeds for their high levels of omega-3 fatty acids
- Legumes and beans - great source of fiber, vitamins and minerals and aid in elimination
- Water- sounds simple but water is key to overall health.
My Go-To Green Juice
- 3 stalks of celery
- 1/2 cucumber, sliced
- 1/2 tsp ginger, sliced
- 1/2 lemon with skin removed
- 1/4 apple, sliced
- Add all the ingredients to a juicer