What is an anti-inflammatory diet?
Inflammation is at the root of almost every chronic health condition and autoimmune disease. The list of symptoms includes weight gain, brain fog, anxiety and depression, persistent fatigue, migraines, joint and body pain. Nutrition is the key factor in managing and reducing inflammation levels.
Benefits of anti-inflammatory nutrition:
- Weight loss
- Improved mood and wellbeing
- Decreased stress levels
- Improved sleep
- Slower aging
Symptoms of Inflammation
Allergies and Inflammation
There is a direct correlation between the amount of sleep we get, and how the body mamages stressors. If you are not getting elough sleep, your body won’t have an opportunity to reset your levels of adrenaline and cortisol, which are 2 of the stressor hormones which increase inflammation in the body.
Water is probably the best medicine you can give yourself to flush toxing out of your body, and also reduce acidity and inflamation. Coffee and tea don’t count as they can also increase inflammation, especially coffee.
Try drinking 6 to 8 glasses of clean water per day and notice your skin improve, your eyes sparkle, your energy increase, and your weight drop. Water is a powerful antidote to many ailments as it also stops bl;ood from becoming too stagnant.
How often do you move your body?
More of the so called aliments attributed to old age actually are a direct link to the level of activity we haver. Use it or lose it! Your body is like a big beaker of chemicals that needs to be stirred. While your heart pumps the blood around the body, movement of the muscles is what returns the blood back to the heart through the veins. Your body was born to move- to run and jumnp and at the verey least, to walk, and it’s a betrayal of your body not to use it in the way itr was intended to be used.
Exercise doesn’t have to be long or hard to be valuable, it just has to be regular and often. Try increasing your incidental exercise by the little things you do each day to stay healthy and strong. Start with organised exercise for 5 minutes, 3 times per day, then once you get comfortable, add more time or increase the intensity.
It doesn’t matter what you choose, just get moving! It could be walking, running, mountain hiking, riding, swimming or dancing in the kitchen. The movement you enjoy is more likely to be the movement you will be able to continue with as a part of your lifestyle.
Movement not only helps to flush yopue body, it helps to keep all of your organs working more efficiently, and this too reduce the level of inflammation in the body, as long as you don’t overdo it.
Other factors which may increase inflammation
- Smoking (check our non-smoker support page for resources to help you quit)
- Late night eating
- Screens before bed
- Not enough sleep
- too may sweets
- Drinking alcohol
- Fast Foods
Carbohydrates can be in the form of simple or complex sugars. It’s not about NO CARBS, it’s aboiut the right carbs!
Avoid or moderate simple sugars and stargy foods such as bread, cakes, pasta and potatoes, and look for healthier alternatives from vegetables such as green beans, lettuce, cabbage, broccoli, ccauliflower and other green foods. Foods that break down into blood sugar more quickly tend to also increase inflammation in the body as they also increase adrenaline and cortisol and a high blood sugar is toxic to the body. This is why the body can overproduce insulin and store the sugare on the body as fat- to save you from the harm you would have been in if the blood sugar had remained at that high level.
Listen to our Low Carb Eating Hypnosis Track to make the transition easier.
Anti-Inflammation Diet Guidelines
An anti-inflammatory diet focuses on consuming foods that help reduce inflammation in the body. Chronic inflammation has been linked to various health issues such as heart disease, arthritis, and even certain types of cancer. Incorporating the following foods into your diet can help promote overall health and well-being:
Fruits and Vegetables: Include a wide variety of colorful fruits and vegetables in your meals. They are rich in antioxidants and phytochemicals that combat inflammation. Some excellent choices include berries, leafy greens, broccoli, bell peppers, tomatoes, and sweet potatoes.
Healthy Fats: Opt for healthy fats that contain omega-3 fatty acids, which have potent anti-inflammatory properties. Good sources include fatty fish (salmon, mackerel, sardines), avocados, walnuts, chia seeds, and flaxseeds. Olive oil and coconut oil can also be used in moderation.
Whole Grains: Choose whole grains over refined grains, as they contain more fiber and nutrients. Whole wheat, oats, quinoa, brown rice, and barley are great options. These grains help regulate blood sugar levels and reduce inflammation.
Lean Protein: Incorporate lean protein sources such as skinless poultry, fish, legumes (beans, lentils, chickpeas), and tofu into your meals. Avoid processed meats as they can contribute to inflammation.
Nuts and Seeds: Almonds, walnuts, pistachios, and seeds like flaxseeds and chia seeds are rich in anti-inflammatory compounds such as omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants. Include them as snacks or add them to salads and smoothies.
Herbs and Spices: Turmeric, ginger, garlic, cinnamon, and cayenne pepper are known for their anti-inflammatory properties. Use them liberally in your cooking to add flavor and health benefits.
Green Tea: Green tea contains antioxidants called catechins, which have been shown to reduce inflammation. Enjoy a cup of green tea regularly as a beverage choice.
Probiotics: Include probiotic-rich foods in your diet to promote a healthy gut. Yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi, and other fermented foods help maintain a balanced gut microbiome, which plays a crucial role in inflammation regulation.
Avoid Processed Foods: Processed foods often contain high levels of unhealthy fats, refined sugars, and artificial additives. These can contribute to inflammation. Instead, opt for whole, unprocessed foods as much as possible.
Limit Added Sugars: High sugar intake has been associated with increased inflammation. Minimize your consumption of sugary beverages, candies, pastries, and processed snacks. Instead, satisfy your sweet tooth with natural sources like fruits.
Remember, while an anti-inflammatory diet can help reduce inflammation, it is essential to adopt a holistic approach to overall health. Regular exercise, stress management, adequate sleep, and maintaining a healthy weight are all vital components of a healthy lifestyle. Consult with a healthcare professional or a registered dietitian for personalized advice and guidance.
Check my resources and downloads on my Weight Support, Quit Smoking Support and Healing Support Pages for downloads and MP3s to help you on your journey to a healthier body, mind and life
Adopting an Anti-Inflammatory Diet to Reduce Pain
wouldn’t be able to heal without it. But inflammation can also lead to pain, and plays a major role in many diseases, including arthritis, heart disease, asthma, metabolic syndrome, diabetes, and even cancer.
The good news is that changing your diet and focusing on proper nutrition can dramatically help with acute pain and illness, and adopting an anti-inflammatory diet is one of the easiest ways to start managing these conditions.
How to start an Anti-Inflammatory Diet
If you want to start eating an anti-inflammatory diet, the best way to start is by choosing whole foods as often as possible. This means basing your diet around whole, nutrient-dense foods that are high in antioxidants and avoiding processed food products. Your diet should provide a healthy balance of protein, carbs, and fat at each meal, and it’s important to meet your body’s needs for vitamins, minerals, fiber, and water each day.
Some of the basic guidelines of an anti-inflammatory diet include:
- Reduce the amount of carbohydrates, especially processed carbs
- Try to include healthy, clean sources of protein when you choose meats
- Good fats are important, especially the omega-3 fatty acids
- Add a wide variety of vegetables and fruits to your meals
- Consume things like dairy in moderation, as it contains unhealthy fats
Foods that may help manage inflammation include:
Fruits and vegetables: Choose a variety and aim for lots of color (as they say, eat the rainbow). Research shows that eating foods rich in vitamin K, like leafy greens, broccoli, cabbage, spinach and kale can help curb inflammation. Fruits like cherries, raspberries, and blackberries derive their color from types of pigments that can also help your body fight inflammation.
Whole grains: Foods like oatmeal, brown rice, whole wheat bread, and other unrefined grains are high in fiber, and fiber can also help with inflammation.
Beans: Beans and legumes are high in fiber and loaded with antioxidants and other nutrients that can help reduce inflammation.
Nuts: Nuts contain omega-3 fatty acids and other kinds of healthy fats that can reduce inflammation. (Olive oil and avocados are also good sources.) Stick to just a handful of nuts a day, as the fat and calories in nuts can make them easy to overdo.
Fish: Oily fish like salmon, tuna, and sardines all contain plenty of omega-3 fatty acids that help with inflammation. You should try to work these into your diet at least twice a week.
Herbs and spices: Along with flavor, these add antioxidants to your food. Turmeric, for example, has powerful anti-inflammatory effects and is a very strong antioxidant. Garlic and ginger have also been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties.
What kinds of foods cause inflammation and pain?
In addition to including nutritious anti-inflammatory ingredients in your diet, it’s also important to limit your consumption of foods that can contribute to inflammation. Avoid foods that are highly processed, overly greasy, or super sweet, as these aren’t a good choice for you if you have inflammation.
People who are following an anti-inflammatory diet should avoid or limit their intake of:
- Processed foods like fast food, frozen meals, and processed meats
- Foods with added sugar or salt
- Unhealthy oils (processed vegetable oils and trans-fats)
- Highly processed grain products, such as white bread, white pasta, and many baked goods
- Processed snack foods, such as chips and crackers
- Premade desserts, such as cookies, candy, and ice cream
- Excess alcohol
An anti-inflammatory diet should be a lifestyle change, not a diet
The important thing to remember is that the systemic inflammation that causes accute pain and chronic disease doesn’t happen overnight, and it can’t be cured in a day. By slowly shifting your diet over to the kinds of anti-inflammatory foods listed in this guide, you can start to develop new healthy habits and find interesting ways to incorporate them into your lifestyle.
Moreover, an anti-inflammatory diet by itself isn’t a panacea to all the health problems you may be experiencing. By combining the tenets of an anti-inflammatory diet with other healthy lifestyle choices, like maintaining a regular exercise routine and avoiding things like smoking and excessive alcohol intake, you should begin to notice a reduction in pain, weight loss, and improvements in your overall health.
Try an Anti-inflammation Diet for 7 Days
The mind and body are intricatelt connected. Metaphysically, anger is one of the main emotions that contributes to inflammation in the body and also to diseases such as arthritis, cancer and pain.
Since stress has a huge effect on every disease known to man, it makes sense to do the work to clear your stress, anxiety and anger. With many of my clients, once this is dealt with, symptoms and disease has completely disappeared. Download my article on Stress and the Mind-Body Connection, and make a booking with Carol to clear away the emotional triggers and start reducing your stress today.