The Benefits of an Anti-inflammatory Diet


anti-inflammatory dietAn anti-inflammatory diet is far different from the ubiquitous fad diets for weight loss. Anti-inflammatory diets focus on eating to reduce inflammation rather than pants size. And while you may mange to lose weight on such plans, the other salubrious effects are certain to be more impressive.

Anti-inflammatory Diet Foods

Anti-inflammatory foods are those that trigger specific hormones that control the body’s inflammatory response. Eating foods that prevent inflammation helps control symptoms common in inflammatory conditions, including arthritis and eczema. Some acne sufferers say certain foods can help prevent outbreaks, although experts claim foods are not the cause of acne—the overproduction of hormones is generally the problem. In any case, following the plan has yielded positive results for many people. Examples of anti-inflammatory foods include:

Fresh foods–including fruits and vegetables, which are preferred over processed selections because they are free from additives that may lead to inflammation.

Omega-3 rich foods–including nuts, oils and fish. These foods are widely known for their ability to reduce inflammation and protect against heart disease, some types of cancer, arthritis and cognitive damage. In fact, the University of Maryland Medical Center says omega-3 fatty acids are highly concentrated in the brain and are significant to brain memory and performance. Marcelle Pick, OB/GYN NP says that omega-3 fatty acids are lacking in modern diets. Pick recommends consuming an omega-3 fatty acids supplement because it is one of the simplest and safest things you can do to quell chronic inflammation.

Anti-inflammatory Herbs

Herbs containing anti-inflammatory compounds are a considerable component to anti-inflammatory diets. Herbs such as oregano, turmeric, garlic and ginger contain bioflavonoids and polyphenols that inhibit the production of cell-damaging molecules known as free radicals. People with chronic inflammatory conditions often use such herbs as adjuncts to other therapies, including medications and exercises. In some cases, herbs are enough to manage inflammation and subsequent pain.

 Considerations

Even people who are symptom-free and in great health can benefit from an anti-inflammatory diet. In an article for WebMD, Russell Greenfield, M.D. says, “Inflammation clearly plays a role in much more than we thought concerning certain maladies.” Because inflammation is considered a silent epidemic, it may be damaging your body long before you feel its effects”.

References: University of Maryland Medical Center: http://www.umm.edu/altmed/articles/omega-3-000316.htm
Women to Women: http://www.womentowomen.com/inflammation/naturalantiinflammatories.aspx


Mara Gerke