Inflammation occurs in the human body when the immune system attacks anything it recognizes as foreign, from chemicals to pollen or microbes. Inflammation, in and of itself is not a negative thing, as the body needs it to properly heal itself. When inflammation lingers, however, the swelling can become painful. The good news is that there are many foods you can eat that naturally reduce inflammation.
Fatty fishes like tuna, sardines, and salmon are high in omega-3s, which help lower inflammation. To get the maximum benefits, you’ll need to eat fish numerous times every week and it must be cooked in a healthy way. If you’re not a fan of fish, you can turn to fish-oil supplements which can have the same anti-inflammatory effects and are available at most grocery and drug stores.
Eating a papaya gives you tons of Vitamin C and Vitamin E, plus beta-carotene, all of which are powerful antioxidants and can have anti-inflammatory effects.
When you stick to whole grain products instead of refined grain ones like rice, pasta, white bread, and cereal, you can stop inflammation before it starts. Why? Because whole grains are chock full of fiber to reduce C-reactive proteins, which are a marker of inflammation in the blood. Note that not all products that label themselves “whole grain” really fit the bill. Look for products where whole grain is listed as the first ingredient and avoid products with added sugars.
The phytonutrients in blueberries make them a great choice as an antioxidant and for their anti-inflammatory properties. You can eat them straight or drop them in your smoothies, salads, or pies. Wild or organic berries will give you the best results.
Some studies have shown that Vitamin E can protect our bodies from pro-inflammatory molecules. Some of the best sources of Vitamin E come from dark greens like spinach, collard greens and kale.
Studies have suggested that ginger includes pharmacological properties of anti-inflammatory drugs. Ginger can be added to soups, smoothies, juices, salad dressings, and teas.
Like fish, nuts contain lots of healthy fats. This is particularly true of almonds and walnuts, but you can count on any nut being packed with antioxidants.
These delicious berries have become more popular in recent years, thanks in part to their anti-inflammatory phytonutrients that help keep the cardiovascular system in great shape – not to mention keeping our digestive tract, mouth and gums, stomachs, and colons in good shape.
Women especially can benefit from the isoflavones – a compound similar to estrogen – that is found in soy products. In fact, soy has been shown to reduce inflammation in women. Try to avoid heavily-processed soy and stick to soy milk, edamame, and tofu.
Are avocados nature’s perfect food? There may be an argument to be made that they are! They include all sorts of anti-inflammatory nutrients including carotenoid antioxidants, phytosterols, omega-3s, zinc, Vitamin C, and more. They are, indeed, anti-inflammatory superstars. They’re great added to soups, desserts, dressings, or made into guacamole.
A healthy diet is just one part of a healthy lifestyle. Exercise and good oral care are also important. Make an appointment to visit Gables Sedation Family Dentistry today and make sure your teeth and gums are in tip-top shape for all your healthy eating.