What Are The Best Foods For An Anti-Inflammatory Diet?

In my Chicago acupuncture practice I often recommend that my patients include anti-inflammatory foods in their diet. Anti-inflammatory foods help reduce stress,pain and of course inflammation in the body.

This post is from The World’s Healthiest Foods a great resource for information about healthy food choices.

Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids are considered anti-inflammatory. That is because this class of nutrients serves as precursors for compounds in the body (such as certain prostaglandins and leukotrienes) that have anti-inflammatory activity.

Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids include: fish such as salmon, sardines, tuna and other cold water fish; nuts and seeds, notably flaxseeds, hemp seeds and walnuts; and other foods, including soybeans and winter squash.

Extra virgin olive oil is another food that contains healthy fats (monounsaturated fats), and one that has been found to have anti-inflammatory benefits. Some of these benefits seem to come through its unique antioxidant phytonutrients, such as oleuropein and hydroxytyrosol. It’s important to note that these phytonutrients are more concentrated in extra virgin olive than other types of olive oil.

Flavonoid and carotenoid phytonutrients also have strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties and therefore deep colored fruits and vegetables would be a great inclusion in an diet geared towards controlling inflammation.

Great choices here would be berries, cherries, beets, leafy greens and other richly colored foods. Pineapple also contains a proteolytic (protein-digesting) enzyme called bromelain that has anti-inflammatory activity.

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