What Is A Low Inflammatory Diet And Which Foods Can prevent Chronic Diseases?
If you are interested to know what is a low inflammatory diet and how beneficial it acts in your body, then you came to the right spot. Below, I will explain to you what exactly it is and why such a diet is so vital for our health. I, furthermore, will list for you the best foods to help fight any inflammation and prevent the formation of related diseases.
Chronic inflammatory diseases, such as arthritis, are becoming more and more of an epidemic in the Western world.
Therefore, scientists deal with the relationships between inflammation and lifestyle habits more diligently.
Science considers typical Western nutritional errors the mainspring for the development of inflammation and as the cause of many chronic diseases.
Anti-inflammatory and analgesic forms of nutrition (e.g rheumatism diet, MS diet) combines the same vital substances despite different clinical pictures. Because of the importance of this matter, I would like to introduce some natural anti-inflammatories to you.
Inflammation is the reason for almost every disease
Bronchitis, arthritis, osteoporosis, multiple sclerosis, diabetes, high blood pressure, Alzheimer’s or cancer – as different as these diseases are, they all have the same underlying root. In fact, we can attribute the causes of many hundreds of health ailments to chronic inflammation.
Inflammations can either occur as a solitary symptom (e.g, acne or pimples) or involve the entire system (e.g, blood poisoning). Terminology ends the names of many inflammatory diseases with -itis (e.g, arthritis = joint inflammation, gastritis = gastritis).
Inflammation can manifest itself in five different forms: as redness, as heat, as pain, as swelling or as impaired functioning.
Since internal inflammation often begins unnoticed, tactile reactions like elevated temperature and general malaise normally are the primary symptoms of inflammation in the body.
The actual inflammatory process is associated with an initial local under-perfusion followed by increased blood flow. In this way, defense cells (white blood cells) are carried from the blood to the focal point of inflammation.
Normally, inflammation is a natural defense mechanism of the body against invaders and pollutants. An unhealthy diet and lifestyle, however, can also prompt inflammatory reactions that develop over time to chronic inflammatory foci and no longer serve the preservation of health.
Undetected chronic sites of inflammation usually result in serious illnesses. In order to prevent this expansion, a preventive lifestyle is essential, which should focus on a healthy and anti-inflammatory diet.
Let us first address the causes of inflammation as a precursor to chronic diseases in order to counteract them.
Main causes of inflammation
In addition to a nutrient-poor and over-acidifying diet, excessive stress, sleep deficits, lack of exercise, too little sunlight as well as environmental toxins, allergens, bacteria, viruses and fungi can lead to chronic inflammation, which eventually manifests itself in chronic illness.
Inflammation is actually a natural response of the organism to stress. Such a stress situation, with which the body is confronted, can be compared to a cold. To combat the common cold viruses, the body reacts with fever.
Although this form of an inflammatory reaction against the pathogens is positive because it usually results in recovery.
On the other hand, the subliminal permanent inflammatory situations caused by a wrong lifestyle are problematic.
The permanent burden of harmful influences drives our defenses to their limit. Strengthen your immune system therefore as a precaution and regularly with a nutrient-rich diet!
Vital substances in an anti-inflammatory diet
The average Western diet is overloaded with draft flours, refined sugar, animal proteins and low-grade fats – the best ingredients for an over-acidifying, low-vitamin and low-mineral diet that interferes with the acid-base balance and causes inflammatory chain reactions.
A predominant alkaline diet is in order to maintain the health of all physical processes and to avoid chronic inflammatory diseases.
This includes antioxidant and vital substances such as vitamin A, vitamin C and vitamin E, copper, selenium, zinc and omega-3 fatty acids. We would like to introduce you to some natural anti-inflammatories:
Pure spring water with anti-inflammatory nutrition
A healthy diet starts with pure drinking water. Regularly drink sufficient quantities of mineral-rich, fluoride-free water with a slightly alkaline pH (from pH 7) from mineral deep wells or filtered tap water.
There are filters that use tap water to produce source-grade water with a slightly alkaline pH.
With a sufficient supply of water, you not only allow your body to run smoothly with various functions.
At the same time, only an organism well supplied with water can release pollutants and pro-inflammatory toxins.
Only with sufficient water can kidneys and urinary tract be flushed and detoxified. Only with sufficient water can the lymphatic system be cleaned and thus inflammation prevented.
Lemon – part of the anti-inflammatory diet
Part of your daily water intake can be taken with lemon water. Lemon water tastes better for many people than still water. Lemon water accelerates the deacidification and removal of problematic substances. In addition, the lemon has an anti-inflammatory effect, so that the lemon water beats several flies with just one stone.
Magnesium within an anti-inflammatory diet
Even a sufficient and balanced mineral supply counteract inflammation. One of the king of anti-inflammatory minerals is magnesium. A magnesium deficiency can thus promote the development of chronic inflammation.
According to a study, magnesium may even be an alternative for people who suffer from inflammatory diseases but who want to avoid the dangerous side effects of pharmaceutical anti-inflammatories.
Here is an overview of the best magnesium nutrients
Amaranth, quinoa, millet, whole grain rice, pumpkin seeds, poppy seeds, sunflower seeds, almonds, seaweed, Swiss chard, spinach, nettle, purslane, basil, marjoram and sage all contain a lot of magnesium and should not be missing in an anti-inflammatory diet.
Fermented foods inhibit inflammation
Fermented foods such as raw sauerkraut, as probiotic superfoods, not only stimulate digestion and balance the intestinal flora. They also protect against inflammation by boosting the immune system against bacterial infection with beneficial bacterial cultures.
However, you should consume fermented dairy products, such as kefir, with caution. They defile and acidify the organism, which in turn can promote inflammation.
Spinach as part of an anti-inflammatory diet
Spinach is one of the superstars among the vegetables. With an above-average intake of vitamins and minerals, these green leaves also provide health-promoting phytonutrients such as carotenoids and more than a dozen flavonoids, which scientists have identified as anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer agents.
As an excellent source of the antioxidants vitamin C and E, beta-carotene, manganese, zinc and selenium, spinach is a natural protective shield against oxidative stress and resulting inflammatory diseases.
Broccoli within an anti-inflammatory diet
Broccoli has also secured itself a place in the first league of preventive vegetables. In addition to the anti-inflammatory vitamin, the green superfood, furthermore, contains anticancer and detoxifying phytonutrients such as sulforaphane and glucosinolates. Plus, broccoli has a high content of kaempferol.
This flavonoid reduces the effects of allergens in the body and, thus, significantly diminishes the likelihood of inflammatory diseases.
Brown algae in the anti-inflammatory diet
Brown algae such as kombu, wakame and arame are rich in fucoidan, a complex carbohydrate ascribed to anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) they utilize algae as versatile medicinal plants.
The fiber also cleans the digestive tract and supports fat metabolism. Good reasons for the next visit to the Japanese restaurant of your trust!
Onions and garlic have an anti-inflammatory effect
Onions and garlic belong to the family of leeks, which are characterized by their health-promoting sulfur compounds. While onions defend the sulfur molecule onionin A, and the antioxidant quercetin against inflammatory processes, garlic is also a well-tried home remedy for inflammation.
Its special sulfur compounds stimulate the protective mechanisms of the immune system against various pathogenic invaders.
Turmeric and ginger against inflammation
According to ancient traditions, they use turmeric and ginger in both traditional Indian and Chinese medicine as a strong anti-inflammatory agent. It acts even more effective than the essential oil of the goldenseal is the orange-yellow dye curcumin.
Their anti-inflammatory power is comparable to strong chemical drugs, without the nasty side-effects.
Cherries act 10 times more anti-inflammatory than aspirin.
Recent research has even called the red fruits the most potent anti-inflammatory agents that nature has to offer.
The responsible ingredient identified is an antioxidant plant dye (an anthocyanin), which belongs to the group of flavonoids.
This anthocyanin cannot only stop oxidative processes in the body but also perform amazingly well as an alternative painkiller.
Cherries are great for type 2 diabetes.
Since cherries are one of the carbohydrate sources with a low glycemic load, they are also ideal for type 2 diabetics.
This is because the fruits have only a small influence on the blood sugar level and the release of insulin. Nevertheless, diabetics still always receive a warning regarding the consumption of fruit, as it contains sugar.
This warning, however, has long been considered obsolete. For example, a 7-year study with 500. 000 subjects showed that diabetics who regularly eat fresh fruit suffer less frequently from complications and live longer.
In addition, some in vitro and animal studies demonstrated that cherries have an anti-diabetic effect.
Do cherries fit in the low carb diet or ketogenic diet?
Both low carb and ketogenic nutrition are about reducing carbohydrate intake. While on a low carb diet, one can consume between 50 and 130 grams of carbs per day, the ketogenic diet has a maximum limit of 50 grams.
With 100 grams of cherries, within the keto diet, you already take almost a third of the allowed daily carbohydrate amount.
This makes cherries rather not suitable for this form of nutrition. When on a ketogenic diet, it is best to opt for low-sugar fruits like avocados and blackberries.
In addition to the cherries, there are other antioxidants and anti-inflammatory fruits. You can, for example, process papaya and blueberries into a delicious smoothie.
Omega-3 fatty acids for inflammation
Omega-3 fatty acids, such as hemp oil, linseed oil and walnuts, play a key role in the nutritional therapy of inflammatory diseases.
The so-called alpha-linolenic acid is able to neutralize the 4-fold unsaturated fatty acid arachidonic acid, which scientists consider to be the trigger of many inflammatory processes.
Despite his high praises, sea fish is, due to its pollutant load (especially mercury), recommended only conditionally.
Of course, it does not help that much, if you, in between eating plenty of anti-inflammatory foods, always resort to inflammatory food, as well.
Although anti-inflammatory foods can compensate for the negative effects of pro-inflammatory foods to some extent, this will not be a problem in healthy people.
No fast food, no processed food!
However, if you already suffer from a chronic inflammatory disease, you should consistently practice an anti-inflammatory diet and avoid inflammation-promoting foods consistently.
These foods include mainly industrially processed foods of all kinds, such as sweets (and anything containing processed/refined sugar), ready-made sauces, ready-made pizza, sausage, cheese, ready-made desserts, fruit yogurts and similar dairy products.
To answer the question of what is a low inflammatory diet in the simplest manner: Try to eat, consciously and consistently, healthier and more natural foods.
Have you ever tried a low inflammatory diet? What was it like for you, and which were your choices of foods? Please, share your experience with us. You know we are always happy to hear from you.
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