Inflammation is basically an immune response that our body gives against various illnesses and that helps us heal. However, there are situations when this response can harm the body, for example when you suffer from rheumatoid arthritis. Also, inflammation plays a critical role in cancer, heart disease and obesity. It is often spurred by saturated fats and lots of sugar. Therefore, if you want to reduce inflammation, you’ll have to turn to healthier foods such as the ones presented below.
1. Whole Grains
If you want to fight against inflammation, you should stop consuming refined grains such as pasta, rice, cereals and white bread. Instead, you are advised to eat whole grains because they have more fiber and they diminish the C-reactive protein levels that cause inflammation in the blood vessels. Always look for the whole grains that have no added sugar.
2. Fatty Fish
The Omega-3 fatty acids are well known for their numerous health benefits and they can be found in sardines, tuna, mackerel and salmon. They can also reduce inflammation and to benefit from their properties, you will have to consume fish 2 or 3 times per week. Also, make sure to eat it boiled or baked and not fried in oil.
If you don’t like eating fish, you can take your omega-3 fatty acids from fish-oil supplements that are efficient in cutting inflammation.
The healthy fats found in nuts are also extremely effective in reducing inflammation. You can find these fats especially in walnuts and almonds, which also have vitamin E, calcium and fiber. The antioxidants contained by the nuts are the ones that will help you against inflammation, repairing all the damage caused by this condition. Nuts, together with whole grains and fish are commonly found in the Mediterranean diet and when they’re combined, they can be extremely powerful in reducing inflammation.
A study conducted on women has discovered that the estrogen-like compounds, the isoflavones located in soy, can lower the inflammation levels. They are also helpful in reducing the inflammation’s effects on heart and bone health.
Try to stay away from heavily-processed soy products and stick to boiled soybeans, tofu and soy milk.
Several studies have found that tomatoes are effective in reducing inflammation in the body, especially in the lungs, because they contain lycopene, an active ingredient fighting against this condition. For this specific use, you must consume cooked tomatoes, including tomato sauce and tomato juice.
Just like tomatoes, peppers are filled with vitamins and antioxidants. Hot peppers in particular, cayenne and chili, contain capsaicin, an ingredient that’s often used in creams against inflammation and pain. Consume them raw in salads or cooked.
7. Onions and Garlic
Although pungent, these vegetables have a wide array of immunity-boosting properties. Moreover, a couple of studies have demonstrated that garlic has similar effects with ibuprofen and other pain medications. As a result, they can immediately cut down the inflammation. The same anti-inflammatory chemicals (allicin and phytonutrient quercetin) can also be found in onions. They break down and produce sulfenic acid that kills inflammation.