health

Which foods have anti-inflammatory properties?

Friday, December 13, 2013 by: Yanjun
Tags: anti-inflammatory foods, kale, shiitake mushrooms

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Delicious
(NaturalNews) Many people frequently eat the typical Western-type diet that includes refined carbs (contained in white flour and sugar), a lot of meat, trans fats and saturated fat, all of which are known to trigger and increase chronic inflammation.

What causes chronic inflammation?

To put it simply, inflammation is caused by the body's response to an infection or injury as a defense mechanism during the healing process. That is why people who have ever twisted an ankle will notice swelling in this area as the body becomes alerted to the injury, partly to help protect itself against further trauma and partly to begin the healing process. However, when the actual infectious agent is not resolved, it becomes problematic. Julie Daniluk, R.H.N., host of The Healthy Gourmet on the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN) and author of Meals that Heal Inflammation, says, "[T]he body can't finish up the inflammatory response, therefore it goes
from acute inflammation... to chronic inflammation."

Why anti-inflammatory foods should be included in an individual's diet

According to expert nutritionists, the main reason that anti-inflammatory foods should be included in an individual's diet is because they reduce inflammation levels and provide immune system support. Plants are remarkably designed with compounds that serve as a natural defense system against "insects, viruses, or the sun," according to the author of The Plant-Powered Diet: The Lifelong Eating Plan for Achieving Optimal Health, Beginning Today, Sharon Palmer, R.D. Scientists have recently discovered that the natural anti-inflammatory properties of plants can effectively reduce a person's inflammation level and help build up their immunity when consumed on a regular basis. Below is a short list of some of the best anti-inflammatory foods available:

Kale

One serving contains 121 milligrams of omega-3 fatty acids and 92.4 milligrams of omega-6, making it a green, leafy superstar of healing potential; kale is "the most nutrient dense food on the planet," according to Daniluk.

Shiitake mushrooms

Contain a compound that helps increase the immune response and fight infection. They are also antimicrobial and contain polysaccharides that have been used in cancer treatments to "reduce the immune-compromising effects that are experienced with chemotherapy and radiation," Daniluk says.

Sesame and hemp seeds

Both contain plant sterols that act as an "immune balancer" for those suffering with immune system-attacking illnesses, such as rheumatoid arthritis or lupus. They are exceptionally rich in calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese and zinc for excellent immune balance as well as vitamins B1, B3 and E.

Researchers have found that chronic inflammation is linked with all diseases, including diabetes, obesity, heart disease and even cancers. So eliminating inflammation is the key to improving disease and preventing it. Therefore, individuals need to develop a regular pattern of healthy eating by also consuming squash, berries, tomatoes, walnuts, cold-water fish, dark chocolate, flax and chia seeds and green tea to receive the most health benefits.

Sources:

http://www.mnn.com

http://www.health.com

http://www.sheknows.com

http://science.naturalnews.com

About the author:
Sofiya has written articles on most health-related topics, including traditional medicine, alternative and naturopathic and natural treatments, wellness, medical marijuana, diets and fitness.

More articles from Dr. Sofia:

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