Fighting Inflammation with Food

Put down those French fries, grab some berries! Put down that soda, pour some green tea! Studies have shown that intermittent inflammation threatens one’s health. Inflammation has been linked to chronic illnesses such as cancer, heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, depression, and Alzheimer’s. However, the likelihood of obtaining these conditions can be decreased — not through the pharmacy — but with your lifestyle choices through your diet, dental health, and exercise. Researchers promote the consideration of incorporating anti-inflammatory foods to help reduce the chances of such illnesses.

What is inflammation?

Inflammation is a vital factor in the body’s healing process. To simplify things, the immune system causes a cascade of chemical reactions which leads to swelling and heat to protect and repair tissues in the body. Unfortunately, chronic or long-term, inflammation is essentially an over working of the immune system: it produces a steady, low level of swelling. Arteries, organs and other tissues can break down under this constant stress and this contributes to the formation of diseases such as cancer, diabetes and generalized pain. There has also been a link to the emergence of lupus, arthritis, and certain cancers after the immune system has gone awry.

Combating inflammation:

Foods considered to be anti-inflammatory include:

  • Green leafy vegetables, like kale and spinach
  • Fruits, such as berries, pineapple, and papaya
  • Nuts, including almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts, and seeds
  • Fatty fish and fish oil
  • Turmeric powder

Foods considered to coincide with inflammation include:

  • Refined carbohydrates, such as white bread and pastries
  • Fried foods, such as French fries
  • Soda and sweetened beverages, including diet soda
  • Red meats, like beef and pork, and processed meats such as sausage and hot dogs
  • Trans fats, such as margarine and processed foods

A diet high in inflammatory foods can be detrimental to your health but choosing the right anti-inflammatory foods can lower your risk of disease.

How we can help:

Come into Transform Rehabilitation and see our registered dietitian, Erica Smith, RD, LDN. Our dietitian can put together a personal diet plan, flexible with your lifestyle, that will promote a healthier and happier you! Next time you are reaching for the fries, pick up the phone instead and call (484) 387-1065 to schedule a consultation.

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