Inflammation comes in two guises. Acute inflammation is when you get a paper cut, or stub your toe. The resulting flare-up actually benefits long-term healing. Chronic inflammation, though less dramatic, over time leads to damage and disorder in the body. Acute inflammation hurts, but chronic inflammation kills. In fact, it’s connected with nearly every disease on the planet, from obesity to diabetes to heart disease
What causes inflammation? The abundance of omega-6 fatty acids in our diet: vegetable oils, grain-fed meats, and wheat /gluten products are full of them. Food intolerances can also create inflammation. And so can sugar. The best way to fight inflammation is to avoid highly reactive foods and eat plenty of anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids. Wild-caught fish, grass-fed beef, walnuts, chia and flax seeds are all healthy sources of omega 3s. I also recommend supplementing with high-quality professional fish oil, especially if you’re not eating wild-caught fish three or four times a week.
10 WAYS TO AVOID INFLAMMATION
- Remove food intolerances. Top offenders include gluten, soy, dairy, eggs, peanuts, sugar, artificial sweeteners and corn.
- Eat wild-caught fish 3 to 4 times a week.
- Eat less grain-fed meat and try pasture-raised, organic or grass-fed meats instead. No more than 2-3 times per week
- Incorporate copious leafy and cruciferous green veggies into your regular diet. Eat a salad at every meal, drink green juices and find new recipes for brussels sprouts, cauliflower and broccoli!
- Throw flax or chia seeds into your protein shakes and smoothies. Flax seeds can be sprinkled on to almost anything you eat, from yogurt to salad. Chia seeds also make a great pudding!
- Avoid sugar whenever possible. Especially the white stuff! Find alternatives that don’t cause an inflammatory response.
- Sleep it off: It might seem tough, but get 7 to 9 hours of sleep every night. A good night’s rest is crucial for vital health.
- Snack on raw organic walnuts – they’re delicious, filling and so good for you. Add them to salads instead of croutons for satisfying crunch!
- Work it out: When you work out, make sure you’re recovering with the right nutrients and rest. Take the time-out days you need, keep in life in balance and allow your body to recover properly.
- Dump the vegetable oils: even the “healthy” ones – opt instead for virgin olive oil, and coconut oil.