Does an anti-inflammatory diet work for you?
Maybe you’re living with signs of inflammation and wondering if diet can really help reduce it and bring you relief. Keep reading and we’ll answer your big questions to help you understand the connection between diet and inflammation and actions you can take to get an anti-inflammatory diet to work for you!
In this article you’ll learn:
- What causes inflammation in the body
- What are some inflammatory diseases
- What are signs of inflammation
- What is the fastest way to reduce inflammation in the body
- Do anti-inflammatory diets really work
- What is the best diet for inflammation
- How long does anti-inflammatory diet take to work
- How to get an anti-inflammatory diet to work for you
- What are the foods that cause inflammation
- What are the foods that reduce inflammation
- Is coffee inflammatory?
What causes inflammation in the body?
Inflammation is your body’s natural response to infection or injury. Think of inflammation as an army of white blood cells that surrounds a hurt area to protect it.
Most of us are familiar with acute inflammation. It’s what helps your body heal if you get a cut or have a sore throat. According to Harvard Health, our army of white blood cells is what causes the redness, heat, and swelling around tissues and joints when you bang your knee or get a cut. The same process also protects you from viruses like the flu. It starts and then stops.
Chronic inflammation is more like a fire in your body that you cannot see or feel. It’s when your immune system keeps calling the white blood cell army to start repairing, but the system never stops so your white blood cells attack nearby healthy tissues and organs.
Dr. Andrew Luster of the Center for Immunology and Inflammatory Diseases at Massachusetts General Hospital warns that chronic inflammation is “a smoldering process that injures your tissues, joints, and blood vessels, and you often do not notice it until significant damage is done.
What are some inflammatory diseases
The following diseases are connected to chronic inflammation:
- Arthritis, joint pain, fibromyalgia
- Heart disease and strokes including high blood pressure, high cholesterol, high triglycerides
- Diabetes, metabolic syndrome, high blood sugar
- Autoimmune conditions like rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, chronic fatigue syndrome, multiple sclerosis, thyroid disease, eczema, psoriasis, asthma
- Digestive diseases like IBS, Crohn’s, colitis, diverticulitis and diverticulosis
- Brain diseases like Alzheimer’s, dementia, depression, ADD, Parkinson’s disease, seizures
What are signs of inflammation
You don’t have to be diagnosed with a disease to be suffering from chronic inflammation. Anyone suffering from inflammation could benefit from an anti-inflammatory diet. Classic signs of chronic inflammation include:
- Living with an inflammatory disease such as: Autoimmune conditions: arthritis, fibromyalgia, heart disease, strokes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, high triglycerides, diabetes, metabolic syndrome, high blood sugar, autoimmune conditions like, digestive diseases like IBS, Crohn’s, colitis, diverticulitis and diverticulosis
- Brain diseases like Alzheimer’s, dementia, depression, ADD, Parkinson’s disease, seizures
- Extra belly fat. They now believe that your belly circumference is a better indicator of your risk factor than your BMI. For men you want to be 40” or less and women 35” or less.
- Food sensitivities
- Digestive issues including ulcers, gas, bloating, heartburn, constipation, diarrhea
- Pain such as headaches or migraines
What is the fastest way to reduce inflammation in the body
An anti-inflammatory diet one of the fastest, natural ways to reduce inflammation in the body.
- Crowd in anti-inflammatory foods like dark leafy greens and berries
- Eat less inflammatory foods like fried foods, sugars, and refined carbs
- Figure out what you don’t digest well and get it out of your day
Other natural tips for reducing inflammation are:
- Make time to exercise
- Lose weight
- Manage your stress
Check out Bye Bye Inflammation Smoothie to crowd in those inflammation fighting nutrients.
Do anti-inflammatory diets really work
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“I learned what to eat more of, what to eat less of, and what to avoid. No calorie counting, just food eating, and never hungry. I lost 20 lbs and I will continue with my new lifestyle for life!” – Doreen H
What is the best diet to reduce inflammation in the body
The best diet for inflammation in the body is one that follows the key principles of an anti-inflammatory diet but that is tailored to you. Anti-inflammatory diets follow the brush strokes of healthy eating, but focus more specifically on the foods that are good for reducing inflammation, and the foods that are bad for inflammation.
The disease-fighting power of The Mediterranean Diet, DASH Diet, and Harvard Healthy Eating Plate stems from their ability to regulate inflammation by focusing on eating more anti-inflammatory foods and excluding or limiting pro-inflammatory ones.
There are 3 principles of an anti-inflammatory diet:
- Eat more of the foods that reduce inflammation
- Eat less of the foods that cause inflammation
- Identify what you don’t digest well
How long does anti-inflammatory diet take to work?
It’s important to remember that chronic inflammation doesn’t happen overnight, so neither will reducing it. While you may start to feel relief in just 2 weeks, full healing can take between 3 and 6 months or longer, especially if you suffer from an anto-immune disease.
According to physician Dr. Williams Welches, “for the patients who adhere, it has been two-three weeks before major effects. The literature states six to 12 weeks to adequately test the diet.”
Ready to take on inflammation?
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How to get an anti inflammatory diet to work for you
While the benefits of an anti-inflammatory eating lifestyle are clear, how we each live it can be very different. In fact, one size does not fit all. For example you can be eating a “healthy” food – but if you have trouble digesting it – your immune system can get activated and you will experience inflammation.
We have found success in working with our clients to help them not only follow the guidelines recommended from the scientific and medical community but to apply them to their life, and identify the right mix of foods that work best for them.
“What I didn’t know is the healthy foods I was eating were not healthy for me! Now I know what I can and cannot eat and this knowledge is power. For the first time in a LONG time I am in control of my health and my appearance. Best news of all – I am finally free of the nagging migraine headaches I have had for the past 37 years. And It is now 3 months since I finished the program and I have continued to lose weight. I am down 25 lbs!” – Stefanie T.
Foods that cause inflammation
Try to avoid these foods that cause inflammation:
- Fried foods
- Trans fats
- Refined carbs
- Processed Meats (bacon, cold cuts)
These foods are problematic because they are high in either glucose (sugar) or trans fats. Too much sugar impacts your body’s insulin response and creates inflammation. Research has found that trans fat is connected to inflammation and can contribute to weight gain. and increases your risk of cardiovascular disease.
Foods that reduce inflammation
Crowd in these foods that reduce inflammation because of their anti-inflammatory nutrients:
- Dark leafy greens like kale, arugula, spinach, broccoli and collard greens
- Berries like strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, cranberries, and blackberries
- Unsalted nuts like almonds, hazelnuts, cashews, pecans, pistachios, and walnuts
- Fatty fish
- Olive oil provides heart-healthy fats
An anti-inflammatory diet is a way of eating that emphasizes foods that are packed with the nutrients that reduce inflammation. The approach involves crowding in natural, whole foods that fight oxidative stress, which is known to trigger inflammation.
Anti-inflammatory diets broadly follow the principles of the Mediterranean diet. It makes fruits and vegetables half of what you eat per day. These plant-based foods are then paired with whole grains and healthy proteins like fish, poultry, beans, and nuts.
To learn more about anti-inflammatory super foods and to get tips to help crowd them into your life, check out: Easy Ways To Eat More Anti Inflammatory Foods.
Ready to take action and figure it out?
Experience a FREE Trial of the Savory Living Program! In 12 easy online lessons you get the knowledge, skills, and support to eat to reduce inflammation and feel great! And you’ll learn how to cook, flavor and enjoy eating tons of delicious healthy foods!
Don’t just take our word for it!
“What I didn’t know is the healthy foods I was eating were not healthy for me! Now I know what I can and cannot eat and this knowledge is power. For the first time in a LONG time I am in control of my health and my appearance. Best news of all – I am finally free of the nagging migraine headaches I have had for the past 37 years!” – Stefanie T.