10 Foods That Reduce Chronic Inflammation

Are you suffering from a chronic health condition? Inflammation could be the cause.

Inflammation is the body’s way of responding to physical stress and this is designed to be a good thing. For instance, when you get a cold, the body reacts by producing a fever (inflammation) to protect the body and kill off any infection. After the infection is gone, the body returns to a normal state. The same is true for a physical injury. The body responds with swelling, redness, and pain as a healing response.

However, if the body is exposed to continual stress or has a compromised immune system, the body is put into a state of chronic low-grade inflammation.

Inflammation Can Cause Damage

Chronic, persistent inflammation may actually damage the body and cause illness. It is linked to a number of chronic diseases such as arthritis, heart disease, high blood pressure, osteoporosis, bacterial and viral infections, and candidiasis.

Key Factors Contributing to Inflammation

A number of things contribute to chronic inflammation. Most notably are:

  • lack of exercise
  • exposure to toxins
  • stress
  • dietary choices (too many of the wrong foods).

Being overweight increases stress in the entire body including your joints, and the circulatory and immune systems. We have the ability to control some of the factors that lead to chronic inflammation and disease. The good news is that the proper diet can help you to lose weight and reduce the stress it causes on your body. And yes, juicing can help!

Prevent inflammation with natural foods

Many foods, especially fruits and vegetables, help reduce and fight inflammation. Here is a list of 10 natural foods you should be eating. You’ll notice a lot of brightly colored foods on this list because they have the most anti-inflammatory compounds.

1. Broccoli provides an excellent source of vitamins C and K, calcium and beta-carotene. It is one of the best anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer foods available. When steamed broccoli has cholesterol lowering benefits.

2. Spinach is a nutritent rich green vegetable providing ample amounts of vitamin K, A, manganese, folate, magnesium, iron, and much more. Spinach contains a type of omega-3 fatty acid called alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), which researchers have discovered reduces a variety of inflammatory cytokines by as much as 43%.

3. Sweet potato is top rated for its beta carotene content. Its antioxidant properties may be especially beneficial for the digestive tract. Steaming sweet potatoes may provide some extra benefits.

4. Pineapple contains the enzyme bromelain which helps to break down proteins, aid digestion, reduce swelling, and improve blood circulation. Pineapple also contains significant amounts of vitamin C and manganese.

5. Papaya is a sweet tropical fruit that has papain, an enzyme similar to bromelain (found in pineapple). It is a digestive aid and also helps build immunity because of its large amounts of vitamin C, A, and E.

6. Blueberries have one of the highest antioxidant capacities of all foods. They are low on the glycemic index and benefit both the nervous system and the brain (memory).

7. Cherries may reduce blood vessel inflammation according to the University of Michigan Cardioprotection Research Laboratory. This antioxidant rich fruit may ease pain and is often recommended for treating symptoms of gout.

8. Ginger has been used for centuries for its all around medicinal properities. It aids digestion, helps alleviate arthritis, and builds the immune system. Ginger is a key component to many healthy juice recipes.

9. Turmeric is a bright orange root plant used as a spice. It is often used in powder form in Asian curry recipes. It is a natural antiseptic and antibacterial agent. Turmeric helps to heal wounds and helps prevent progression of inflammatory diseases. Similar to ginger,the root can be juiced. Try this turmeric juice recipe from Tera Warner.

10. Garlic has so many benefits on the body. It is beneficial for heart health and may help lower blood pressure and LDL. Garlic has the ability to stimulate the lymphatic system which eliminates toxins from the body. This is an whole body anti-inflammatory food.

Juicing To Help Reduce Inflammation

The process of juicing breaks the cell walls of fruits and vegetables to release the nutrients that reduce inflammation. Once released, these nutrients are able to be absorbed quickly by the body. You may even feel the benefits in as little as 10 minutes.

All of the foods in this top ten list can be juiced or otherwise added to your daily diet. Which ones have you tried? Answer in the comments below.

 

 

sources:
http://bodyecology.com/articles/top_ten_foods_that_prevent_inflammation.php#.UCPb5OmXQmU
http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/ART02012/anti-inflammatory-diet
http://today.msnbc.msn.com/id/21246089/#.UCPggumXQmU
http://myhealingkitchen.com/medical-conditions/arthritis/arthritis-make-it-better/boost-arthritis-pain-relief-with-spinach/
http://whfoods.com/

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Comments

  1. says

    I did a 48 hour detox last week which included some juicing. On the juiced list were pineapple, blueberries, kale, celery, lemon, etc. I have a history of chronic neck pain for which I regularly see a chiropractor. Following the detox, I noticed a marked improvement in neck pain. The difference is so dramatic, I feel like a fool to not have considered using food to heal this inflammation sooner. I thank you for this article and will be incorporating more of these juices into my diet soon!

    • margaret says

      I have alot of neck stress and tension too. Would you please share what things you juiced? I just got one but so far, everything I have tried tastes yucky to me.

  2. says

    At almost 400 pounds my legs were prone to swell a lot due to thrombus and poor circulation. I started eating lots of broccoli and spinach and immediately noticed a decrease in that problem. Now I try to make it a part of my normal diet because it also promotes weight loss.

  3. Desiree says

    I suffered from a chronic infection following an elective surgery about a year ago. I gained about 40 pounds and was unable to go to the gym AT ALL. I was on and off anti-biotics for about 9 months and my overall health just suffered. I constantly felt fatigued and began to feel depressed about my health. Finally, after seeing an infectious disease doctor, who confirmed that everything had been cleaned out of my system, I decided to begin more physical activity. I also began to include juicing into my diet. I began noticing a change in my energy levels within the first week. I was not as hungry or tired all the time, and I realized that I didn’t feel so bloated or inflammed anymore. Juicing has become a definite part of my lifestyle. I cannot go a day without having some form of fresh vegetable juice or fruit juices. I will never turn back.

    • Tanja says

      Hello Desiree,

      I really liked what you had to say in your post! I have been fighting severe inflammation and discoloration in my legs and no one has been able to help me and this has been going on for about 6 years now! I have seen so many Dr’s, have had so many tests but yet not one single answer! Obviously I’ve not seen the right Dr yet but meanwhile, I’m wondering if it’s a type of infection that I’m fighting as well! If I take antibiotics, I feel better but no sooner than I stop them, I’m back at square one so I do understand the frustration that you had dealt with! Can you possibly share what type of infection you had, or the tests done to confirm it? It gets so frustrating having to go day after day like this when all I want is for someone to help me regain my health so that I can enjoy the rest of my life here instead of constantly feeling exhausted but yet have severe insomnia, chronic fatigue and shoot, you know…the list just goes on and on! Anyway, I’m glad that you’re doing so much better and I hope that you can share more information with the rest of us, perhaps it will help someone else reading this! Blessings and peace to all!

      Tanja

      • Marcy says

        Tanya-Please check out http://www.roadback.org I was just reading thru these comments and your hit home. I have chronic inflammation and have elected to fight it without all the drugs they want to give you for the various types of arthritis out there. I am following a long term low dose antibiotic therapy for my RA. It’s slow but sure. Do your research online and you will be amazed.

  4. d matthews says

    I am back into the green juices again , i don’t know why i stopped , all i know is when i have these juices my blood work shows improvements , and my doctor said to keep it up , so i am hooked .

  5. Tim Miller says

    I have been diagnosed with a rare disease called relapsing polychondritis, I’m only 40 I feel like I’m dying I have severe swelling in the joints of my toes some days I cant walk and other days I want to just give up because of the pain, the pain doesn’t go away I have been to several doctors and they just feed me pills. Before this I was very active now not so much. I have started juicing but its not helping, I’m not really sure what diet I should be on I mentioned it to my rheumatologist he laughed and told me to just continue to take the pills or stop walking. CAN YOU PLEASE HELP ME?

    • susanne meyer says

      Tim, I more than understand….I am 43 and was recently diagnosed….it took doctors 6 yrs almost to the day to figure it out because I didn’t have standard symptoms. I have it in my windpipe and it’s slowly taken me down. Last month was one of the worst flare-ups I’ve ever had. My doctor gave me NSAIDs (salsalate) and although they help, pills are not the answer. I reached out to many people I know who have been juicing for years. Understand that it’s not just about juicing…..you need to completely change your diet and lifestyle. In the last month I have gone to a low-fat diet and slowly have given up anything that has enriched flour (bread, pasta, rice, cake, cookies), as well as giving up caffeine of any kind (coffee, chocolate, colas), as well as little to no salt and little to no sugar (and I am allergic to substitutes so I am using honey very sparingly), and most dairy (I still eat an egg on very rare occasions). I only drink green tea or water as a beverage and have begun consuming tons of vegetables (and limited fruits). As well, no red meat and very little animal protein (I eat maybe 2 ounces of chicken or fish at dinner sometimes). I have also seen information on nutritional sights where we should not consume nightshade veggies (tomatoes and eggplant). I have begun eating clean (meaning no processed foods AT ALL). I know what you are thinking (I’ve gone off the deep end), but it was either give this a try or begin taking steroids and put more harmful toxins in my body in the hopes that I will get to a point to where I can deal with the constant pain. I cannot describe to you how amazing I feel and how much I never realized how the food I was putting in my body was affecting my illness. I learned the hard way by “treating” myself to a cheat day and going to hibatchi today and I regret that I ever wanted to eat it again – I have been in severe pain ever since I finished eating it. Changing my eating habits has been hard (I’m from New Orleans with some of the most amazing foods everywhere you turn). I have learned through this process that I need to eat to live, not live to eat. I love, love, love food so this has been hard, however, I also love to breathe without pain and juicing, along with a complete change of diet and the way I think about food, has given me hope – which I haven’t had in many years). Please don’t give up. There isn’t much information out there on our condition as it is rather rare (although I tend to think it often goes undiagnosed or is misdiagnosed). If you have the financial means and live in or near an urban area, please consider going to see a naturopathic doctor as they are taught how food affects our bodies. As well, a well-versed nutritionist or registered dietician can help you streamline a menu. Juicing (specifically a detox) was my first step and within 2-3 days I started to feel different. I also drink green smoothies every morning as I now crave them – I would have bet you one month ago that I would NEVER like a green smoothie!!! Mind over matter! You can do it!

      • Tiffany says

        Thank you for your post. I was just diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis. The main inflamation is in my rectum and Sigmoid colon.
        I am very interested in reducing the inflamation and keeping the flare ups at bay by juicing.

        Which recipes are best? I have never juiced before.

        My gastrologist wants me to do steroids and 5 ASA but I feel I should try natural ways first before giving my body more things to fight off.

        Please share any additional info you know with me and how you are living and dealing with this.

        Thank you

        • Julianne says

          Also move to a plant based diet to reduce inflammation as a whole, take out wheat and gluten ( read the book wheat belly)
          Good luck!!! I healed mine hope your feeling better soon

  6. Julianne says

    I do a hot shot every AM ginger lemon garlic cayenne flax, knock it back feels great but need to really reduce the inflammation this time so leaning toward juicing

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