5 Foods That Help Fight Chronic Inflammation

The function of inflammation is to rid our bodies of pathogens and to repair damaged tissue. There are 2 types of inflammation that can occur within our body: acute inflammation and chronic inflammation.

Acute inflammation is our body’s natural response to a pathogen or to a physical injury.  Characteristics of an acute inflammatory response include pain, swelling, redness, heat and perhaps loss of function.  This type of inflammatory response is quick and generally short lived.

Chronic inflammation on the other hand is a long term response that can last for months or even years.  The possible causes of chronic inflammation include:

  • poor diet
  • ongoing stress
  • lack of sleep
  • disease

So why is it so important to address this type of inflammation?  The reason is this: if our body is on high alert all of the time, this ‘always on guard’ state of being may contribute to diseases such as:

  • heart disease
  • cancer
  • diabetes
  • stroke
  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • kidney disease
  • chronic lower respiratory disease

One of the best, if not the best, ways to address and begin to dampen the flames of inflammation is through diet.  The big picture is to eat a diet of whole foods and to eliminate processed foods.  But I want to drill down for you and offer up 5 of my top foods to fight chronic inflammation.

Turmeric

Anti-Inflammatory foods

This once obscure plant, which is a member of the ginger family, is now mainstream.  Curcumin is the principal curcuminoid of turmeric and has powerful anti-inflammatory properties.  Use it in your dishes, smoothies, as a tea or my favourite, Golden Milk.

Bok Choy

Anti-Inflammatory foods

Bok Choy, or Chinese cabbage, is chalk full of antioxidants as well as vitamins and minerals.  It’s a mild vegetable that is easily incorporated in to many dishes or as a tasty side dish.

Blueberries

Anti-Inflammatory foods

Blueberries contain powerful flavonoids including quercetin and anthocyanins that are powerful antioxidants and anti-inflammatories.

Kefir

cancer and gut health

Dysbiosis is an unhealthy balance of our microbiota that can lead to inflammation. Kefir is a fermented drink loaded with friendly bacteria that supports gut health leading to a more balanced microbiota and reduced inflammation.

Wild Caught Salmon

Anti-Inflammatory foods

Several studies have shown Omega 3 fatty acids to have a variety of anti-inflammatory effects that may help to lower risk of chronic disease. Wild Caught Salmon is rich in Omega 3’s and a powerful anti-inflammatory food.

What you eat does matter and arming your kitchen with these functional foods is a powerful weapon in the fight against chronic inflammation and disease prevention.