Inflammation is a normal protective process that occurs in the body after an injury or acute illness like the flu. We normally feel this inflammation in swollen glands and congested noses, and over time, as we get better, this inflammation goes away. Inflammation can become a problem when it is long lasting, because it causes damage to healthy cells in the body.
Chronic inflammation can be caused by stress, over consumption of processed food and added sugars. Inflammation from these sources has been linked to chronic diseases such as Rheumatoid Arthritis and Type 2 Diabetes. The good news is that there are foods that have anti-inflammatory properties and that can help combat chronic inflammation, improving overall health and wellness.
First up is Turmeric. This is a root plant of the ginger family, which is typically purchased as a ground powder. It has a versatile flavour profile, which allows it to be added to so many foods and beverages, hot or cold. Curcuminoids are components of tumeric, which include curcumin. It is curcumin that how been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties, by acting on and reducing the effect of molecules that can create inflammation in the body. Try our recipe for ‘Golden Milk’ for an easy way to incorporate turmeric into your diet.
Olive Oil is the next anti-inflammatory powerhouse. To be specific extra virgin olive oil is rich in polyphenols, which are antioxidants that have anti-inflammatory effects. This is particular for reducing the chance for atherosclerosis, which is a build up of plaque in the arteries. Including 2-3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil each day is part of a healthy inflammation-reducing diet.
Finally we come to dark leafy greens. Dark leafy green vegetables provide a ton of nutritious benefits such as fiber, calcium and micronutrients. They also contain glycolipids, which have been shown to have biological activity that can reduce inflammation. In case you needed another reason to enjoy these health packed greens, now you have it! Make sure to add these anti-inflammatory food to your next grocery list to reap the benefits they provide our bodies.