In this vlog I take a look at chronic inflammation and the best anti inflammatory foods you can eat to help reduce the it.

Many people suffer from inflammation, which causes pain and stiffness. Infact, chronic inflammation symptoms are often hidden or silent, something that we can’t see or perhaps even feel.

So… what causes inflammation in the body?

The three biggest drivers of inflammation are all lifestyle factors:

  • our gut health
  • how much sleep we get
  • chronic stress.

Often the culprit is an unhealthy diet which includes too much sugar and fat. The good news is that there are many foods you can eat to help bring down your level of inflammation.

To find out more, watch the video below, or if you would prefer to read about it, please scroll down under the video.

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Best Anti Inflammatory Foods – Video Transcript

If we improve our lifestyle it can be beneficial for all chronic diseases, and chronic inflammation can be improved by improving our lymphatic system

The main roles of the lymphatic system includes managing the fluid levels in the body, reacting to bacteria, and dealing with cell products that otherwise would result in disease or disorders like cancer, arthritis, diabetes, dementia, obesity. Failure to maintain good lymph flow manifests as swelling (especially in the ankles) and eventually the failure of our more important organs. Recent research shows that the lymphatic system even clears substances from the nervous system.

How to reduce chronic inflammation?

When we change our lifestyles, any chronic conditions we have will benefit.

And what does that entail?…. a change in diet, doing some exercise,  managing our stress levels and getting a good nights sleep.

So the key element of aiding and abetting chronic inflammation is lymph health, the flow of lymph – it’s really the secret river of life.

The movement of our bodies, and thus, our muscles, move the lymph around our bodies, unlike our blood vessels that have a heart to pump the blood around. In effect, more muscle contractions create greater lymph flow.

The biggest movement of our lymph comes from doing some exercise, so choose a form of exercise that suits you and that you enjoy.

Walking a couple of miles a few times a week is highly recommended, and you could combine it with immersing yourself in nature.  If you walk among trees and plants, we inhale chemicals called phytoncides, and our circulatory system responds by decreasing our blood pressure and pulse rate.  These phytoncides also dial down our levels of cortisol, which is our stress hormone, that can cause anxiety and depression, and thus have a positive effect on inflammation.

We can also help our stress levels, and lymph systems, by attending to not only our bodies, but also our minds.  Perhaps start looking into Mindfulness Meditation, even a few minutes of meditation in the morning and evening can allow for better lymph flow, and has been documented to lower stress levels

Another good way to ease your stress level,  is to try journaling, I find getting my thoughts out of my head and onto paper gives me a sense of relief and peace.  Overproduction of our “flight or fight” hormones causes lymph vessels to malfunction.

And now to the best anti inflammatory foods

The gastrointestinal system is intimately involved with the lymphatics, the gut has more immune cells and lymphatic tissue than the rest of the body.  And the gut microbiome is made up of billions of bacteria and other microorganisms that co-exist with other human cells in the lower intestine helping with digestion, metabolism, immune function and brain health.

If we don’t have healthy immune systems it can lead to intolerance to some foods and can cause inflammation, such as bloating, stuffy nose, headaches, itchy skin, aching joints, and much more.

Eating the rainbow, is a good place to start.

I love lots of colours on my plate, a variety of foods can help us feel good and give us the energy that we need. We can get this by ensuring we have unrefined carbohydrate, protein, loads of fruit and veg, all organic if you can.

Berries

– like strawberries blueberries, raspberries and blackberries, as they contain antioxidants that have anti-inflammatory compounds that may reduce risk of disease

Fatty Fish

– like salmon, sardines, herring, mackerel and anchovies. Fatty fish are a great source of protein and omega-3 fatty acids.  Our bodies metabolise these fatty acids into compounds which have anti-inflammatory effects.

Vegtables

Next is broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts and kale. Broccoli is rich in sulforaphane, an antioxidant that decreases inflammation

Other

Avocados also have a compound in them that may reduce inflammation, and the same for peppers and mushrooms

Tomatoes have lycopene in them, a powerful antioxidant with impressive anti-inflammatory properties.

Grapes are also one of the best sources of resveratrol, another antioxidant compound that has many health benefits.

Cherries are rich in anti-oxidants reducing  inflammation.

Drinks

Green tea is anti-inflammatory, but I find green tea quite bitter, so if you are like me,  on the upside, dark chocolate and cocoa are packed with anti-oxidants that keep inflammation at bay.  Also kombucha is a yummy drink that is available from super markets is great for gut health.

Also, add in some spices and herbs to your diet, they can have a medicinal effect on lymph flow because they contain compounds that relax lymph vessels to accentuate flow. These include garlic, onions, cloves, cayenne, cinnamon, oregano, curry, and turmeric, which all contain compounds that assist in tissue maintenance and repair.

Also add in some fermented and pickled food for gut health.

Those are some good recommendations, and now for the not so good.

What To Avoid

Inflammatory foods to avoid are any foods that have been chemically sprayed, foods that have been fried, some vegetable oils, sugar, a high animal fat diet, and industrial toxins should be avoided because they all may cause sluggish lymph flow.

Avoiding these foods is not always easy, just do what is in your control, and don’t get overwhelmed by what changes you might want to make, just take one step at a time.

And last but not least, sleep is essential for our health, more than 70 percent of the cleansing, or natural detoxing is done during sleep.

cleansing & detoxing - sleep quote

If you are interested in improving your wellbeing and making some lifestyle changes, I am offering a simple course that explores some options that could be helpful. Please click here find out more.

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