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Foods that fight inflammation

Foods that fight inflammation in the body

There are certain foods that prevent inflammation from happening in the body. These foods protect people from diseases of the heart and blood vessels. When combined, these foods are particularly helpful in lowering blood pressure and blood cholesterol levels. They also help in reducing the risk of developing type 2 diabetes among people among high-risk persons.

These foods are;

  1. Colorful vegetables like tomatoes, carrots
  2. Green leafy vegetables like Ugu, Efo, spinach, waterleaf, broccoli, kale, etc
  3. Unsaturated fats like olive oil
  4. Nuts like cashew nuts, almond nuts, walnuts
  5. Fatty fish like Mackerel, sardine
  6. Fruits like oranges, mangoes, etc
  7. Whole grains that are not processed like brown rice, fonio (acha), fresh corn
  8. Herbs like ginger, turmeric

Foods that cause inflammation

  • Red meat
  • Processed grains like white rice,
  • Refined flours: wheat or rice
  • Refined sugar
  • Saturated fats
  • Trans fats

Processed meat like bacon, sausage, ham, salami, suya, kilishi

How can we help the body fight inflammation?

Inflammation that a person is not aware of may be going on in the body. It is slow. It is happening all the time in the body and shows no visible signs. This is called chronic low-grade inflammation.

This type of inflammation is the foundation that gives rise to many diseases of the heart and blood vessels, cancers, type 2 diabetes mellitus, dementia, glaucoma, etc.

It causes the accumulation of plaque and blood clots inside the blood vessels. When the plagues and blood clots block the blood vessels that supply the heart, it is called a heart attack. When they block the blood vessels that supply the brain, it is called a stroke.

This makes it important to help the body to fight inflammation by taking the following measures;

  1. Sleep well: This helps the body to stay refreshed and better able to fight inflammation.
  2. Eat right: certain foods fight inflammation while certain food promotes inflammation.
  3. Stay active: even the smallest amount of aerobic exercise can make a lot of difference.
  4. Avoid weight gain: the accumulation of fat cells causes the release of chemical messengers that promote inflammation. This is worse when fat accumulates in the tummy.
  5. Manage stress: emotional flare-ups associated with stress promote inflammation
  6. Stop using tobacco: many chemicals in tobacco promote inflammation
  7. Reduce alcohol use: a little bit of alcohol can be useful to the body. Therefore, it is important to know the healthy limits and reduce the intake of alcohol

Sources

  1. Minihane AM, Vinoy S, Russell WR, et al. Low-grade inflammation, diet composition, and health: current research evidence and its translation. Br J Nutr. 2015;114(7):999-1012. doi:10.1017/S0007114515002093
  2. Pietzner M, Kaul A, Henning AK, et al. Comprehensive metabolic profiling of chronic low-grade inflammation among generally healthy individuals. BMC Med. 2017;15(1):210. Published 2017 Nov 30. doi:10.1186/s12916-017-0974-6

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