Saturday, October 23, 2010

Foods That Fight Chronic Inflammation

Certain foods can cause chronic inflammation in your body, which over time, will result in oxidative damage to your cardiovascular system, your joints and your brain. But there are some things that you can do to reduce chronic inflammation and protect your tissues and organs.

What is Chronic Inflammation?
Chronic inflammation is a low-grade inflammation that has been linked to obesity and certain foods like sugar and certain fats. This chronic inflammation can result in oxidative damage within the walls of the blood vessels, as well as to other tissues and lead to chronic and sometimes crippling disease.

Foods That Increase Chronic Inflammation
Foods that contribute to excessive weight gain and obesity, such as sugar and other refined carbohydrates/white flour products, saturated fat and trans fat are also the foods that have been associated with chronic inflammation. High insulin levels in the blood (usually in response to high levels of sugar) have been also been shown to increase inflammation in the walls of the blood vessels.

Omega-6 oils, such as corn oil, can also increase your risk of inflammation. Corn oil is commonly used in commercial baked goods and other processed foods.

Symptoms of Chronic Inflammation
Chronic or continuous inflammation can lead to damage to the your blood vessels, joints and other tissues, including the brain. Arthritis, cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, cancer and Alzheimer's disease have been linked to inflammation. 

But, unfortunately, chronic inflammation can go on for years, slowly causing damage to the internal organs without any real symptoms. By the time the disease caused by the inflammation discovered, it could be quite serious, even life-threatening.

Foods That Fight Chronic Inflammation
Eating foods that are rich in antioxidants can help to fight chronic inflammation. Here are some of those anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory foods that you can use.

Seafood. Salmon, sardines, tuna,  and other oily fish are  high in omega-3 fats.

Fruits. Blueberries, cherries, strawberries, raspberries, cranberries and other berries. Also, mangoes, papaya, pineapple red grapes, apples and avocados.

Vegetables. Sweet potatoes, broccoli, cabbage, kale, red peppers, avocado, onion and garlic.

Nuts and seeds. Walnuts, almonds, flaxseed and pumpkin seed.

Oil. Olive oil.

Herbs and spices. Ginger, garlic, oregano, turmeric, cinnamon and cayenne pepper.

Other. Other anti-inflammatory foods include cocoa, red wine and green tea.

Eat more foods that are rich in anti-oxidants and avoid those that are known to increase inflammation to reduce your risk of chronic diseases. And lose weight if you are overweight or obese.