Fighting Inflammation, Naturally

Inflammation can be everywhere in the  body.Inflammation – it’s everywhere we look. Every disease ending in -itis is talking about inflammation: arthritis, bursitis, tendinitis, etc. With all this inflammation, causing all kinds of problems do you ever wonder if there is anything you can do about it? The truth is there are a lot of things you can do to address the core problem beyond taking ibuprofen to cover up the symptoms. One of the biggest things to do, and what I want to talk about today, is paying attention to what you eat.

Have you ever noticed that if you eat a lot of sugar or dairy when you have a cold you end up feeling worse? There is a reason behind that. Our bodies react differently to different foods – some nourish where others harm, some decrease inflammation and others increase it. Knowing what foods fall into which category can help you make informed food decisions for your health.

Starting with foods that lower inflammation, these are going to be foods that are high in omega 3 fatty acids and a large variety of vegetables. Here’s a list of good foods to choose from.

  • Fish
  • Eggs (specifically egg whites)
  • Legumes (beans, lentils etc.)
  • Fruits
  • Vegetables (especially leafy greens)
  • Olive oil
  • Nuts (almonds and walnuts)
  • Avocado
  • Turkey

Moving on to foods that increase inflammation, these are your sugars, simple carbs and some fats.  You don’t necessarily need to stop eating them all together, the important thing is to cut back and eat more things that decrease inflammation. Here is a list of some of the big offenders.

  • Trans-fats
  • High sugar fruits and veggies (such as corn and bananas)
  • Breads
  • Pasta
  • Rice
  • Fruit juices
  • Tortillas
  • Bagels

Changing the way you eat may not be a cure-all for every condition but it can make a huge impact avoiding and managing those pesky -itis conditions that crop up all over the place.  If you’re worried about how to implement these changes and stay on track it may be worth while reaching out to a nutritionist or health coach for guidance and support. For those of you actively struggling with inflammation issues and the pain and discomfort that goes with it, speak to an acupuncturist to learn about how acupuncture and other complementary therapies can help with the issue.