I have written extensively over the years about the dangers of inflammation. There are many ways to turn down the heat in your body but one of the very best is employing the best (and most effective) anti-inflammatory foods to do the work for you!
Having plenty of these types of foods in your diet is critical to your health. As important as removing pro-inflammatory foods is replacing them with naturally anti-inflammatory foods.
In the past decade, the danger that chronic inflammation causes to the human body at the cellular level has been extensively researched.
Scientists around the world have determined that this perpetual heat not only worsens existing diseases and conditions, it can actually cause them in the first place! Health issues once attributed to genetics, hypochondria, a freak occurrence, or simply “unknown” to patients and doctors alike are now being placed firmly at inflammation’s door.
Major Diseases and Conditions Linked to Chronic Inflammation
- Heart disease and stroke
- Allergies, asthma, and respiratory disease
- Autoimmune disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, and multiple sclerosis
- Chronic pain and fibromyalgia
- Digestive conditions such as ulcerative colitis, gastritis, Crohn’s, and Celiac disease
- Thyroid dysfunction and metabolic syndromes
- Diabetes and insulin resistance
- Neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and dementia
- Depression and mood disorders
Controlling inflammation in your body is critical to your health.
In an article published in the Brain, Behavior, and Immunity journal, UCLA’s Dr. George Slavich states, “All told, inflammation is involved in at least 8 of the top 10 leading causes of death in the United States today. Understanding how inflammation promotes poor health, and how and when we can intervene to reduce inflammation-related disease risk, should thus be a top scientific and public priority.”
Phillip Hunter wrote in EMBO Reports that, “Inflammation has long been a well-known symptom of many infectious diseases, but molecular and epidemiological research increasingly suggests that it is also intimately linked with a broad range of non-infectious diseases, perhaps even all of them.”
Here are seven foods (readily available in your local market or health food stores) that can help you face down inflammation and get your body in balance at the cellular level.
7 Most Effective Anti-Inflammatory Foods
- Cacao: Flavanols in cacao show a measurable reduction in pro-inflammatory markers for heart disease. Researchers with UC Davis stated, “Flavanol-rich [cacao] could be a potential candidate for the treatment, or possibly prevention, of the broad array of chronic diseases that are linked to dysfunctional inflammatory responses.”
It also stimulates the metabolism, lifts the mood, sharpens the mind, and protects the heart. Cacao satisfies cravings for sweet and salty foods and helps you feel “full” longer – making it an excellent choice (in moderation) for controlling weight.
- Acai: The acai berry has been featured in the media often in the last few years regarding everything from weight loss to lowering stress. In a study published in The Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry, researchers discovered that almost all the acai benefits are attributed to a powerful flavonoid it contains called velutin.
It reduced lesions caused by atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries due to a buildup of plaque) in mice. These results could make acai the best answer for inflammation in the brain. Inflammation is the root cause of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s.
- Spirulina: This blue-green algae is one of the most nutrient-dense foods on the planet. Referred to as a nutraceutical, it has been proven in countless studies to exhibit tremendous antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that benefit those with heart disease, viral infections, liver disease, and even cancer.
It naturally detoxifies, protects the eyes, and boosts your immune system. Spirulina’s 60% protein content makes it a valuable anti-inflammatory food source for famished nations that is both healthy and sustainable.
- Chlorella: Another incredibly nutrient-dense algae, chlorella’s anti-inflammatory properties stimulate the growth of “good” gut flora, improve energy levels, naturally detox your body, and help maintain a healthy pH balance.
It has also shown amazing benefits in reducing the physical symptoms of stress, controlling weight, and normalizing blood pressure.
- Hemp: This plant contains more than 450 compounds (with only three inducing intoxication). The rest of the compounds found in hemp have been the subject of many studies over the years.
One such compound is called beta-carophyllene and comprises as much as 35% of the hemp extract. The substance activates a neurotransmitter in the brain that has powerful anti-inflammatory effects without the intoxication effect.
- Maca: This root vegetable is in the cruciferous family and packs a serious punch when it comes to overall health. Rich in vitamins and minerals that protect you at the cellular level, it’s one of the most beneficial anti-inflammatory foods you should add to your diet.
In one study after another, maca root has been linked to lowering inflammation dramatically – improving insulin tolerance, heart health, thyroid function, hormone balance, bone health, and your entire central nervous system.
- Turmeric: The primary compound in turmeric that lowers inflammation is called curcumin. It gives curry dishes their distinct color and aroma. When it comes to antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-viral properties, turmeric is a powerhouse.
The numerous studies linking it to measurable protection against cancer, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s are just the beginning. The spice has shaken up the scientific community and made traditional medicine re-think their stance on “holistic” therapies. Ultimately, anti-inflammatory foods such as turmeric will change how doctors think about (and treat) various diseases and conditions.
All of these foods are outstanding individually for your health. They have been scientifically proven to lower inflammation, boost your metabolism, and strengthen your immune system.
Lowering inflammation is the key to safeguarding your health now, preventing disease in the future, and slowing the signs of aging.
For more about inflammation (and how you can stop it), read my book Fire in the Belly right now. The tips I give you can be done by you, in your home, without medical intervention.
You’re going to look better, feel better, and live longer by introducing anti-inflammatory foods to your daily nutritional plan.