What is an Anti-inflammation Diet?
According to Karen Lamphere, MS, CN most diseases have an underlying etiology involving inflammation. Conditions like arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, asthma, allergies, heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s and diabetes can be made worse or better depending on a person’s diet. Lamphere, a nutritionist, based in Edmonds, Washington prescribes a diet of anti-inflammatory foods as a way to help her clients with inflammatory diseases healthy as well as ensure her healthy clients stay healthy. Anti-inflammatory fats are a cornerstone of this diet.
Lamphere recommends foods that are high in omega-3 fatty acids, such as wild salmon, sardines, herring, anchovies, flaxseed, hempseed, and walnuts. Also, other anti-inflammatory fats include extra-virgin olive oil, avocado oil, flaxseed oil, hempseed oil, and walnut. Fruits and vegetables are high in inflammation-reducing antioxidants. “Fruits and vegetables high in antioxidants are essential, especially onions, garlic, peppers and dark leafy greens,” says Lamphere. She adds, “These are high in inflammation-fighting carotenoids vitamin K and vitamin E.” Herbs and spices include compounds to fight inflammation. Lamphere explains, “Turmeric, oregano, rosemary, ginger and green tea contain bioflavonoids and polyphenols that reduce inflammation and limit free radical production.” She adds, “Some of the most potent anti-inflammatory vegetables are peppers and the spices derived from them, such as cayenne pepper. All chili peppers include capsaicin (the hotter the pepper, the more capsaicin it has), which is a potent inhibitor of substance P, a neuropeptide associated with inflammatory processes.” Include healthy proteins that are anti-inflammatory. “There is a difference in the saturated fat and omega-3 fat content in grain-fed versus grass-fed beef, with the latter being a more healthful choice for an anti-inflammation diet.” She adds, “In addition, organic pasteurized eggs have a better anti-inflammatory fatty acid profile than factory-farmed eggs.”
Choose your proteins wisely and aim to reduce the amount of saturated fat in your diet.