Posted by Nicole on August 10
You may be aware that chronic inflammation plays a role in the development of diseases such as arthritis, coronary artery disease, diabetes, cancer, and Alzheimer's disease.
Whether you are trying to prevent these diseases or combat their symptoms, you might be thinking about eating a diet which fights inflammation body-wide, or at least does not exacerbate it.
Following are five simple tips to help you ease into eating an anti-inflammatory diet for long-term health.
1. Stop eating so many sweeteners.
You can follow an anti-inflammatory diet just by remembering a few key points, one of which is to avoid sugar, high fructose corn syrup, and other unhealthy sweeteners.
Not only are there studies which show an association between the intake of such sweeteners and the pathogenesis of disease, but eating lots of sugar can even reduce the health effects of anti-inflammatory foods.
2. Cut back on the fried, greasy foods.
Fried foods and heavily processed foods tend to promote inflammation. Just by removing the bulk of these from your diet, you should be able to make a difference. These foods can also contribute to health issues via other mechanisms as well, so there may be additional benefits to reducing them in your diet.
3. Lean toward foods which are high in omega-3 fatty acids. Balance out those which are high in omega-6 fatty acids, but still nutrient-rich.
Foods which are higher in omega-6 fatty acids are pro-inflammatory, while those which are higher in omega-3 fatty acids are anti-inflammatory.
One of the best ways to increase your intake of omega-3 fatty acids and improve your overall ratio is to consume more fatty fish. Some examples of anti-inflammatory fish include tuna, salmon, sardines, and mackerels.
Other anti-inflammatory foods to try include kale, spinach, and other leafy green vegetables, tomatoes, berries, oranges, olive oil, and nuts.
4. Drink less alcohol.
How many drinks do you typically have each day? Alcohol is a pro-inflammatory beverage. For this reason, you should moderate your drinking or even try to minimize it.
5. Don’t eat refined carbs.
You do not need to avoid all carbohydrates in order to eat an anti-inflammatory diet. But it is recommended that you stay away from those which have been refined.
When carbs are refined, their fiber content is decreased, which in turn may upset the balance of inflammatory bacteria in the digestive tract.
While you're at it, you might want to consider reducing your carbohydrate intake altogether, as there are numerous health benefits to eating a low-carb diet.
6. Take an anti-inflammatory supplement.
Finally, if you are looking to give your diet an extra boost, consider taking a supplement to support inflammatory health. Some options include turmeric curcumin, boswellia, ginger root, quercetin, CoQ10, and cat’s claw bark extract.
Follow Your Anti-Inflammatory Diet Over the Long Term for the Best Results
Years of poor dietary choices create consequences that will not be undone overnight. So if you want to see the best results from eating an anti-inflammatory diet, then stick with it. It may take months to notice any difference, and some benefits may not become apparent for years.
If you are patient and diligent, hopefully your efforts will pay off, maximizing your health now and over the years ahead.