Inflammation has become the go-to villain in the battle over health and wellness. It’s a term that has received more attention than usual during the COVID-19 pandemic. And there’s a reason for all of the hullabaloo. While inflammation is a natural bodily process triggered by an immune system response, lingering effects lead to chronic inflammation.
Research suggests that chronic inflammation leads to advanced biological aging and the onset of deadly diseases, including cancer, cardiovascular diseases, and Alzheimer’s. This may be startling, but luckily, there are ways to prevent chronic inflammation. Namely, by eating a diet rich with ingredients that fight inflammation.
Ginger is one of the most potent ingredients to ward off inflammation. It contains antioxidants that reduce inflammation and are antibacterial. Thanks to its juicy, spicy taste, ginger is pretty easy to add to your diet! Enjoy it freshly grated in curries, chilies, soups, and even in desserts.
CBD refers to the cannabinoid chemicals in the cannabis plant. CBD is quickly gaining popularity as an ingredient in self-care products, like face creams and salves. And why is that, you may ask? CBD has anti-inflammatory properties that make it ideal for people who have inflamed skin, muscles, and joints. It may help prevent chronic inflammation and aid in quicker body recovery post-workout.
And you don’t even have to smoke it to enjoy its soothing effects! If you don’t want to deal with the taste of plant extracts, you should try delta 8. This isolated extract is much easier to mask with other foods and flavors, making it more discreet when cooking with it. You won’t have nosy neighbors at your door asking if you’re doing something illegal. You may be asking: what does delta 8 taste like? In general, it has a slight bitter tanginess to it, but nothing that isn’t overcome by chasing it down with a flavored beverage or putting it in something tasty.
Eating your vegetables has never been so crucial if you want to fight inflammation. And in particular, leafy green vegetables prevent inflammation.
- Swiss chard
- Brussels sprouts
So what makes these little green guys so great? They are chock full of the antioxidant vitamin E, which is a powerful inflammation fighter.
You can significantly reduce the amount of inflammation in your bloodstream by enjoying a diet rich in Omega-3 fatty acids. And as you probably know by now, specific types of fish are abundant in this nutrient, especially tuna, mackerel, salmon, and sardines.
Not a huge fish fan? You can get the same Omega-3 fatty acid benefits by chomping down on seeds like chia, flax, and hemp; beans, like kidneys and edamame; seaweed, including nori and kombu, and nuts, like walnuts and almonds.
Most delicious, juicy fresh fruits are bursting with antioxidants that combat inflammation. There is such a diverse selection of such fruits that it’s super simple to add ones to your diet that you like eating and skip the ones you don’t. Citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, limes, and grapefruits contain nutrients that fight inflammation, especially joint stiffness and swelling. Berries, including blueberries and strawberries, also combat inflammation. This is mainly due to the antioxidant anthocyanin, which also gives berries their deep, rich hue. And on the less sweet end of the fruit spectrum, tomatoes prevent inflammation, too. It’s a tremendous source of lycopene, which wards off inflammation and cancer.
Curcumin is the active ingredient in the spice turmeric. It is a well-known antioxidant prized for its anti-inflammatory properties. Add turmeric to your foods and drinks to benefit from curcumin. It’s worth noting that because it’s difficult for the bloodstream to absorb it, you may benefit from turmeric-curcumin supplements. Or increase its absorption rate by adding black pepper to the meal as well.
Olive oil, a staple of the health-boosting Mediterranean diet, is a popular anti-inflammatory ingredient. It contains the antioxidant oleocanthal, which studies reveal works in the body in a way similar to ibuprofen to reduce inflammation. Opt for extra-virgin olive oil, and use it to dress salads and to gently cook vegetables and lean proteins on the stovetop.
There are some aspects of our health we have no control over (looking at you, genetics!). But we can absolutely control what we put in our bodies. By eating a diet rich in these seven ingredients that fight inflammation, you will reduce your chances of developing chronic inflammation. Not only that but you will lower the risks of having the life-threatening diseases associated with inflammation.
It’s a health and wellness concern too severe to play around with, after all.