Maybe you've heard that we should avoid certain types of food to fight inflammation? Well, there's a lot of confusion on this topic and I'd like to clear it up for you.
Inflammation is a condition affecting millions of Americans. It occurs when the immune system sees injuries or irritants in the body and attempts to fight them off. This causes swelling, redness and pain. The condition may increase the risk of several other diseases and conditions, such as stroke, heart attack and some forms of cancer. Determining what foods to eat for inflammation can be extremely important for those who are suffering from this potentially dangerous condition.
Let me show you what foods are best to help relieve inflammation and which foods make inflammation worse.
What is inflammation?
Inflammation is the body's response to cellular damage. It's a protective mechanism that kicks in to repair and heal. Inflammation is a natural part of the healing process for minor injuries, like scrapes and cuts, but chronic inflammation can be harmful.
How does diet affect inflammation?
The foods we eat affect the inflammatory process. Eating lots of saturated fats, hydrogenated oils and refined carbohydrates (think chips, cookies, white bread) can lead to an overproduction of pro-inflammatory chemicals in our bodies. This can cause chronic inflammation and increase disease risk.
Foods high in antioxidants and phytochemicals are anti-inflammatory, meaning they can reduce the production of pro-inflammatory chemicals in the body. Increasing your intake of these foods may help combat chronic inflammation.
Best foods to eat and reduce inflammation
Turmeric is a spice that is well known for its anti-inflammatory properties. Curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric, has been shown to be a powerful inflammation fighter. Add turmeric to your meals or take a curcumin supplement to help reduce inflammation.
Ginger is another potent anti-inflammatory agent. It has been shown to be effective in reducing inflammation associated with arthritis and other chronic conditions. Add ginger to your meals or take a ginger supplement to help reduce inflammation.
3. Omega-3 fatty acids
Omega-3 fatty acids are a crucial part of a healthy diet. They are anti-inflammatory and help to protect against chronic inflammation. Eat fatty fish like salmon or trout, or take a fish oil supplement to get your dose of omega-3 fatty acids.
4. Green tea
Green tea is a healthy drink that is packed with antioxidants. These antioxidants help to fight inflammation and protect the body from damage. Drink green tea regularly to help reduce inflammation.
Blueberries are a delicious fruit that are high in antioxidants. These antioxidants help to fight inflammation and protect the body from damage. Eat blueberries regularly to help reduce inflammation.
Which Foods Make Inflammation Worse
A growing body of research has shown that the foods you eat can have a significant impact on inflammation. Inflammation is at the root of many chronic diseases, and your diet is one of the most powerful ways to reduce it.
Here are common foods that contribute to inflammation:
Red meat (unprocessed). This includes beef, pork and lamb, and it's been linked with an increased risk of several conditions related to inflammation. One study found that a diet high in red meat was associated with a 59% increased risk of rheumatoid arthritis. Red meat also appears to increase your risk of heart disease, cancer and type 2 diabetes
Processed red meats. These include hot dogs, sausages, bacon and ham, which are typically preserved by smoking, curing or salting. They've been associated with an increased risk of several serious diseases. For example, one study found that eating processed meat was associated with an 80% higher risk of heart disease in women
Refined sugar. Sugar triggers cell damage and inflammation through a process known as glycation. It also promotes inflammation by creating an imbalance in your gut bacteria
Trans fats. These are man-made fats produced during the industrial process called hydrogenation. They're very common in fast food and packaged
Refined carbohydrates. This category includes white bread, pasta and rice. Foods made from refined grains are high-glycemic-index foods, meaning they cause spikes in blood sugar levels. This can trigger inflammation.
"Bad" fats. These include saturated and trans fats, which are usually solid at room temperature. They're found in animal products as well as some commercially baked cookies, crackers and other snacks.
Excess alcohol. Drinking more than the recommended amount of alcohol may increase your risk of developing chronic health problems, including inflammation of the liver (alcoholic hepatitis).
Fried foods and partially hydrogenated oils (trans fat). Fried foods and products made with partially hydrogenated oils both contain trans fats, which should be avoided to prevent inflammation.
CBD Oil And Inflammation
The main job of the immune system is to protect the body from foreign invaders such as viruses, bacteria and other microbes. When the immune system detects a threat, it sends white blood cells to fight off the invader, which can result in inflammation. There are different types of inflammation including acute and chronic. Acute inflammation is caused by short term injury or infection and usually is relieved quickly once the problem has been resolved. Chronic inflammation on the other hand, is long-term and can result in serious health issues such as cancer, rheumatoid arthritis and diabetes if not treated properly.
CBD oil and its anti-inflammatory properties
CBD is known to be a powerful antioxidant, which can help with fighting free radicals that are responsible for causing oxidative stress in the body. This type of stress can damage cells, resulting in inflammation. CBD also has anti-inflammatory properties that can help reduce inflammation, thereby reducing pain associated with it.
How CBD works on Inflammation
The body has its own endocannabinoid system that naturally produces cannabinoids within the body. This system is responsible for maintaining homeostasis, regulating mood and appetite, managing pain and inflammation and ensuring proper cell-to-cell communication.
When the endocannabinoid system is out of balance, you’re more likely to experience problems like chronic pain, anxiety, depression and many other conditions including digestive issues like leaky gut syndrome. When you consume CBD hemp oil supplements it can help increase your endocannabinoid levels to restore balance to your body.
CBD works by interacting with CB1 and CB2 receptors that are found throughout the body. The CB1 receptors are mainly in the brain while CB2 receptors are primarily found in the immune system. CBD also acts as an indirect antagonist of cannabinoid agonists. This means that it indirectly blocks or activates cannabinoid receptors. This explains why CBD may help with inflammation because it can interfere with how some cells perceive pain.
Reducing inflammation is critical to optimal health. You can eat healthy foods that reduce inflammation or eat unhealthy foods that increase it. What you eat depends on your goals and your diet as a whole, but some foods are clearly better than others for managing and treating chronic inflammatory conditions like arthritis.