Today I Learned...
he anti-inflammatory diet is a way of eating that can help you reduce inflammation and fight symptoms associated with autoimmune conditions. It’s easy to follow and the benefits are clear—reduced pain, clearer skin, better sleep, and more energy!
What Is the Anti-Inflammatory Diet?
The anti-inflammatory diet is not a specific regimen but rather a style of eating—the Mediterranean and DASH diets are two examples.
The anti-inflammatory diet is made up of foods that are rich in antioxidants (like cherries, berries, and dark leafy greens) and healthy fats from avocado, fish, and nuts which all play a role in reducing chronic inflammation. This diet avoids sugary, highly processed, and refined foods.
Who can it help?
If you have a chronic inflammatory disease or condition, you may be looking for ways to reduce inflammation. A diet focused on reducing inflammation may help people who suffer from chronic illnesses or conditions that are worsened by inflammation.
The following conditions involve inflammation:
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Eosinophilic esophagitis
- Crohn’s disease
- Inflammatory bowel disease
- Hashimoto’s thyroiditis
- Metabolic syndrome (Source: Medical News Today).
Anti-Inflammatory Foods to Eat
Foods that may help reduce inflammation include:
- Oily fish, such as tuna and salmon
- Nuts, including natural nut butters (without any added sugars)
- Whole grains (quinoa, bulgur, oats, brown rice, whole wheat, and more)
- Fruits, especially cherries, berries, pomegranate, blackberries & strawberries
- Vegetables, especially dark leafy greens, cruciferous veggies, and beets
- Olives and olive oil
- Unsweetened fermented dairy products, like yogurt and kefir (Source: Eating Well).
Inflammatory Foods to Avoid
People who are following an anti-inflammatory diet should limit their intake of the following foods:
- Foods with added sugar or salt
- Processed carbs, which are present in 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 (Source: Medical News Today).
An anti-inflammatory diet may help decrease inflammation and ease symptoms associated with a number of common health conditions.
There is no single diet that will reduce inflammation in everyone, but eating a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains and healthy fats may help.
Those with chronic health conditions that involve inflammation should speak to a medical professional about the best dietary options for them.