Protips for an Anti-Inflammatory Dietary Plan

We asked newly Board Certified Cardiopulmonary Specialist, Amberlyn to compile a ‘short list’ about her years of research and her application of anti-inflammatory dietary practices.

Here are some tips to help you get started towards an inflammation free dietary plan.

  • Sugar is extremely inflammatory.  Limiting or eliminating sugar can have a huge impact on decreasing pain in acute and chronic diseases.  This includes not only chronic orthopedic injuries, but vascular as well as neurologic and cardiovascular.  This is THE number one inflammatory food.

  • Salt causes water retention and, in excess, also inflammation.  

  • Focus on lean proteins, raw nuts and seeds.  (Roasted is considered inflammatory)

  • As always focus on vegetables and fruit.  Remembering fruit tends to have a lot of natural sugars.  
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  • Drinking water and staying hydrated helps the body recover and maintain balance.

  • Healthy fats- omega 3 fatty acids are anti-inflammatory.   Think fish/salmon, avocado, olive oil. Avoiding/limiting fats that are solid at room temperature, like animal fat, lard, butter and coconut oil.

  • Avoiding processed foods and opting for whole grains.  Whole grains have a lot of fiber that is observed as anti-inflammatory. In addition,  increased fiber plays into good gut health. Gut health is correlated to inflammation.  

  • Spices!!! Turmeric, cumin, garlic and ginger are all very strong anti inflammatory agents.  Try turmeric ginger tea! It’s delicious!

  • Vitamin-K rich vegetables, such as broccoli, kale, spinach, are natural anti-inflammatory agents.

  • Berries are anti-inflammatory, especially  cherries, blackberries, blueberries and raspberries!

  • Limit omega-6 fatty acids (corn, vegetable oils..) This means fried and greasy foods.  An imbalance of omega 3 to 6 in your diet increases systemic inflammation.

  • Protip: Fresh pineapple is very anti-inflammatory!!

  • If you want to dive deeper, you may want to talk to us about an elimination diet. This is simply evaluating how foods affect you, after introducing them after abstaining from them for a while.