What are the foods that cause inflammation?
Avoid inflammation-causing foods which include:
- refined carbohydrates (like white bread and white pasta)
- fried foods (trans fats)
- soda and other artificially-sweetened beverages
- high-fructose corn syrup
- red meat, especially very fatty meat
- processed meat
- refined oils (like margarine, shortening, vegetable oil, and soybean oil)
- excessive alcohol
- snack foods with high sodium (like chips and crackers)
To fight inflammation, go for whole, unprocessed foods with no added sugar: fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes (beans, lentils), fish, poultry, nuts, seeds, a little bit of low-fat dairy, and olive oil.
Many people add herbs and spices like cinnamon, ginger, and turmeric. There are a few studies that suggest modest benefits,
How do they help? "It's believed that antioxidants in brightly colored fruits and vegetables [cooked tomatoes, carrots, squash, and broccoli] may lessen the effect of free radicals, which damage cells," says Liz Moore, a registered dietitian at Harvard-affiliated Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.
Other food components that may help fight inflammationinclude:
- fiber found in fruits, vegetables, and especially legumes and whole grains such as barley, oats, and bran
- omega-3 fatty acids found in fish (such as salmon, mackerel, sardines, tuna), vegetable oils (flaxseed and canola), walnuts, flaxseeds, and leafy green vegetables (spinach and kale)
- polyphenols (plant chemicals) found in berries, dark chocolate, tea, apples, citrus, onions, soybeans, and coffee
- unsaturated fats found in almonds, pecans, walnuts, flaxseeds, pumpkin and sesame seeds, and plant oils (olive, peanut, canola)
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