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Foods that Fight Chronic Inflammation

Updated on May 28, 2017

About Chronic Inflammation

Did you know that chronic inflammation in the body can make you more susceptible to diseases and conditions ranging from conditions like Alzheimer's, arthritis, cancer, and depression to diabetes, heart disease, and obesity? Chronic inflammation can manifest itself in a variety of ways ranging from the appearance of acne on the skin to pain in the body as well as intestinal issues, neurological disorders and autoimmune diseases.

If you are one who suffers from chronic pain related to chronic inflammation, your most instinctive response may be to reach for over-the-counter medication like non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as the familiar Advil or Motrin (ibuprofen). If you take your symptoms to the doctor's office, he/she may prescribe corticosteroids to support the NSAIDs.

While these drugs may be highly effective in reducing inflammation, they do have side effects which may cause other conditions like cataracts, glaucoma, hypertension, elevated blood sugars and osteoporosis.

Exercise and Chronic Inflammation

What can you do to change the impact of chronic inflammation on your body and health? Experts recommend that in order to combat chronic inflammation in the body, one should incorporate some form of moderate exercise into their routine. This ritual of exercise can vary and does not have to be rigorous at all. For example, walking for 30 minutes 3-5 days per week can be effective as well as yoga can aid in improvement of the immune system, enabling immune cells to do their job.

Nonetheless, exercise aids in reducing inflammatory markers in the body. While the impact of exercise is seen across both genders, research has shown that men especially benefit from increasing exercise.

The Impact of Green Tea

Green Tea is a great supplement of sorts that can assist in not only managing your weight but it also contains properties that fight against inflammation. White and black teas have similar benefits. They contain flavonoids that possess natural anti-inflammatory properties as well as catechins, also known as a polyphenolic compound that fights free radicals.

Food and Chronic Inflammation

Dietary changes can greatly support your efforts to fight against chronic inflammation. It's the easiest way to take initial steps to take control of your body's state of health. Fiber is one such food that is not only beneficial to weight loss but, recent studies demonstrate that foods that are rich in fiber contain ingredients that help to combat inflammation in various parts of the body, including joints. Aside from being a natural method that can assist with promoting healthy cholesterol levels, fiber also enhances digestive functions, lowers blood pressure and can have a positive effect on cardiac health. Also, fiber reduces inflammation markers like C-reactive protein (CRP) in the blood, which are known to contribute to inflammation in the body.

Fiber also phytonutrients prove to be an ally in the battle against inflammation.

Phytonutrients are commonly found in fiber-rich foods such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.

Try adding more of the following foods to your diet, some of which are rich in polyphenols, antioxidants, and other anti-inflammatory compounds:

  • Lean protein
  • Healthy fats
  • Cooking with Olive Oil
  • Nuts (almonds and walnuts)
  • Fruits (Avocados, tomatoes, strawberries, blueberries, apples, cherries)
  • Vegetables (Spinach, broccoli, kale, collard greens)
  • Omega-3 Fats from small fish (sardines, herring, sable, and wild salmon)
  • Probiotics
  • Vitamin D, E & K
  • Water
  • Whole Grains
  • Spices..Yes Spices! ( Garlic, cinnamon, ginger, chili peppers to name a few

The following is a list of beverages and foods that should be limited or avoided to decrease risk of inflammation:

  • Soda and other sugar-sweetened beverages
  • Refined carbohydrates
  • Fried foods
  • Red Meat
  • Processed Meat (hot dogs, sausage)
  • Margarine
  • Lard
  • Shortening

A change in diet is not only beneficial in improving chronic inflammation but is the recommended food can also prove to be beneficial in enhancing one's over all physical and mental health.

In Summary...

In summary, exercise and diet are the two methods that may have an impact on chronic inflammation with the body.

© 2014 Mahogany Speaks


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    • Mahogany Speaks profile image

      Mahogany Speaks 3 years ago from Texas

      It amazes me how much what we eat impacts our mental health and physical health.

    • sangre profile image

      Sp Greaney 3 years ago from Ireland

      This is very interesting to hear. I don't think a lot of people ever think about changing their lifestyle, but if it helped relieve chronic inflammation on a long term basis it would be worth considering.