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7 Foods That Fight Inflammation

March 29, 2022

Learn a nutritionist's tips for avoiding foods that cause inflammation and find out good foods to try if you want to promote an anti-inflammatory diet.

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Why You Want to Eat to Fight Inflammation

Chronic, low-grade inflammation is caused by many factors, including diet, lifestyle, genetics and environmental pollutants. Here we’ll discuss a few simple and delicious swaps for the most common pro-inflammatory foods and how to use diet as a tool to protect against the effects of inflammation in general.

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Environmental Factors Can Contribute to Inflammation

Chronic inflammatory diseases have been recognized as the most significant cause of death in the world today, with more than 50% of all deaths attributable to cardiovascular disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes, chronic kidney disease, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and autoimmune and neurodegenerative conditions, according to Global Health Metrics. Chronic inflammation develops over months or years due to diet, lifestyle and environmental pollutants, and can negatively impact our physiology in many ways.

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What You Can Do to Combat Inflammation

To understand how best to combat inflammation, it’s helpful to first understand what it is. Acute inflammation, signaled by redness, pain and swelling, is a healthy and necessary immune response to support wound healing. If inflammation persists, however, and doesn’t serve a localized purpose, it may contribute to the most common chronic inflammatory diseases, including cardiovascular disease, obesity, diabetes, autoimmune disorders and early aging.

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Tip 1: Shop the Perimeter at the Grocery Store

Chronic inflammation is largely due to highly processed foods and an imbalance in omega-3 and omega 6 fatty acids, which we’ll discuss in more detail. One trick to remember to balance out inflammation in diet is to shop the perimeter at the grocery store. Concentrate on filling your cart with more fresh and single-ingredient foods found around the edges of the grocery store and less from the center aisles, which tend to be more heavily processed and refined.

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