The Essential Anti-Inflammatory Grocery Guide

The Essential Anti-Inflammatory Grocery Guide

The decisions you make in the grocery store will directly influence how your body functions. Most people are unaware of the fact that they regularly purchase and eat inflammatory foods that cause bloating, gas, poor digestion, and more. These are inflammatory reactions to invasive chemicals, microbes, or plant pollen. Experiencing these symptoms every once in a while is not life-threatening, but constant inflammation can cause serious problems. 

If you can rule out food poisoning or the flu and continue to experience acid reflux, cramping, or diarrhea, you could be experiencing chronic inflammation. Chronic inflammation is your enemy, because the body is no longer responding to neutralize a foreign invader. The Standard American Diet, also known as the common Western diet, messes with the gut microbiome, decreasing the amount of good bacteria and upsetting the stomach. This can lead to digestive issues, arthritis, diabetes, and life-threatening conditions like cancer, heart disease, and dementia. 

Foods That Cause Inflammation

Trying to decrease inflammation in the body? The most important foods to eliminate from your diet include sodas, sugary beverages, margarine, lard, shortening, refined carbohydrates (such as white bread, pastries, or processed snacks), fried foods, red meat, and processed meats. As you may be aware, these inflammatory foods are not surprisingly bad for your health. Most of these foods have been linked to type 2 diabetes and heart disease, and they are associated with excess inflammation. These foods also contribute to obesity, another condition that increases your risk of chronic inflammation. 

Foods That Fight Inflammation

Some foods cause inflammation, while others work to reduce inflammation. Most of the foods that have anti-inflammatory properties are plant-based and unprocessed. The minimal processing helps these foods retain their nutrients and anti-inflammatory properties. Protective plant compounds are in the following foods:

Root Vegetables

Root vegetables are hearty, comforting, and loaded with a diverse mix of antioxidants that support immune function. These veggies are also rich in fiber, complex carbohydrates, and vitamins A and C. Vitamin A helps to encourage tissue healing and reduce inflammation and vitamin C supports collagen production and toxin elimination. The best root vegetables to include in your diet are carrots, parsnips, sweet potatoes, beets, celery root, rutabaga, kohlrabi, turnips, ginger, turmeric, and horseradish. 

The Allium Family

We’re talking about the allium family, not The Adams Family. This family of vegetables includes garlic, onions, leeks, shallots, chives, and scallions. All of these are rich in flavonoids and organosulfur compounds, which have been known to inhibit tumor growth, according to laboratory studies. Allium vegetables also contain a lot of vitamin C and other compounds that naturally decrease inflammation in the body. 

Nuts And Seeds

According to several dietary studies, people who regularly incorporate nuts and seeds into their diet have lower inflammatory markers of C-reactive protein. It’s not healthy to snack on nuts all day, but experts say that swapping three servings of red meat with three small servings of nuts or seeds per week helps lower C-reactive protein. Nuts and seeds are also rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which help reduce other inflammatory markers. 

Herbs And Spices

If your seasoning game is on point, then you are two steps ahead of everyone else. We are talking about the use of herbs and spices, though, not pre-blended spice mixes with preservatives and flavorings. Various herbs and spices, including fennel, parsley, basil, dill, ginger, turmeric, black pepper, and more, have antioxidants and polyphenols that help reduce and prevent inflammation. 

Cruciferous And Leafy Green Vegetables

Cruciferous vegetables, which include cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts, all have detoxifying properties. They are low in calories and provide anti-inflammatory benefits that help to combat heart disease and other conditions caused by chronic inflammation. Leafy greens are also beneficial for clearing up inflammation. In fact, nutritionists say that consuming leafy greens can undo a lot of inflammatory damage that comes from eating a poor diet. 

Winter Squash

Winter squash may be some of the most comforting and delicious vegetables in existence. Acorn, butternut, spaghetti, kabocha, delicata, and pumpkin squash are some of the most nutritious squash varieties to consume. Many of these squash contain cucurbitacins, which work to stop the production of inflammatory enzymes. Winter squash are also rich in vitamin A and vitamin C. 

An anti-inflammatory diet will vary for each individual. Something that has anti-inflammatory properties may actually cause inflammation in someone with a sensitive system. All you can do is experiment with the foods listed in this article and see if they help your situation. 



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