There are tons of buzzwords that float around in the health and wellness world. One that stands out to me the most – at least lately – is inflammation. You probably see this word associated with food a lot but what is it, really?
In layman’s terms, inflammation is when a certain area of your body swells and potentially becomes reddened and hot as a reaction to something. This might sound like something that happens to skin on the outside of your body, and that happens as well, but it can also happen internally from eating certain foods.
Enter: anti-inflammatory diets. A lot of anti-inflammation cookbooks might be marketed to those trying to lose weight or cut out dairy, but no matter what your health goals are, we could all benefit from a little less inflammation in our lives. If you ever wake up feeling/looking puffy or bloated, read on.
Common foods that can cause inflammation:
- Vegetable oil (fried foods)
- Refined flour
- Artificial additives
- Saturated fats
- Grain-fed meats
- Processed meats
There are of course more foods that cause inflammation, but these are some of the most common. Basically you want to watch out for foods that contain too much saturated fat, which triggers inflammation in fat tissue and sugars that spike insulin levels, which then creates a pro-inflammatory response from your body. Refined products that have been stripped of their nutritional value are also culprits behind bloating and inflammation.
On the flip side, if you’re looking to jump on this anti-inflammatory diet trend, you’ll want to fill your grocery cart with the following:
- Healthy fats like extra virgin olive oil, almonds, walnuts
The key here is loading up on fibrous foods that your body digests slowly. This way you get all the available nutrients. This study done by Harvard explains more in detail about the benefits of these foods, but also simply states that eating less processed and more whole foods is what does the trick. The study also says that the best diet to follow for an anti-inflammatory lifestyle is the Mediterranean Diet because of its high use of fatty fish, healthy oils, nuts, veggies and fruit.
Have you ever had issues with inflammation? Share how you keep it at bay plz!