Inflammation in the body is normal to a certain degree. Short-term inflammation helps to heal wounds and fight infection. But when inflammation becomes chronic, it becomes a real problem for our health and well-being. Chronic inflammation increases a person’s risk of a number of diseases, including:
The most logical approach to combating chronic inflammation, then, should be to address at least these three key areas to the greatest extent possible. We don’t always have control over our exposure to environmental toxins and the like. Emotional stress and eating habits, however, are things that we can work on. For now, we’ll focus primarily on eating habits.
- Certain foods contribute to inflammation and others do not. Ideally, your diet should include foods that are high in anti-oxidants, which fight inflammation. Fruits and healthy green or colorful vegetables are an excellent place to start.
- You should also avoid sugars and starchy foods as much as possible, including refined carbohydrates. Whole grains and unprocessed foods are are much better in terms of their effects on inflammation.
- Meats should generally be avoided, but lean meats and healthy cuts of fish should be used when meat is consumed.
- Saturated fats and trans fat in the diet are also associated with increased inflammation.
- Simply restricting calories has also been shown to reduce inflammation in studies.