Using Food as Medicine: Anti-inflammatory Lifestyle
As you probably know by now, eating certain foods can lead to poor health. Why is that?
Food is essential to life but eating certain foods can promote inflammation, weight gain, and increase pain.
Let’s go back to the basics and eat with intention. Food is medicine.
Even in back in the day thousands of years ago. This concept was known and used to not only know what to eat daily but to promote wellness and even curb certain health symptoms. In this article, I will break down the basics of what foods to add-into your day to promote healing, cut inflammation, and promote a pain-free life!
Let’s dive in.
The basic principles of an anti-inflammatory diet:
To get you started right away the first thing you need to do is do a pantry clean-out. Why you ask? Because the key to any diet success is changing your mindset. This is not really a diet at all but a lifestyle change for sustained wellness and prevention of disease.
Junk is going to promote pain, not stop it. So if you want to feel better, it starts with what you put into your body.
The diet is pretty straight forward. There are Yes and No foods. Way more Yes foods, so don’t ever think “there is nothing to eat” because there is SO much to eat!
Yes Foods to promote anti-inflammatory lifestyle include:
- Meats: grass-fed and organic meats: focus on chicken, turkey, fish, beef- (limit or do not consume pork products)
- Grains/carbs: Gluten-free grains: brown or white Jasmine rice, quinoa, root veggies, and sweet potatoes.
- Veggies: ALL, variety is key, greener the better, and make your plate colorful! Best to bake, steam, or saute veggies for optimal digestion! Have you tried Romanesco? If not, look it up and have it one night, yes veggies can be that interesting, easy to make, and delicious!
- Fruit: low-glycemic fruits are best. These include: cherries, dark berries like blueberries, raspberries, pears, citrus, Asian pears, plantains, and all fruits in-season. Avocados are the best fruit! Limit bananas and dates.
- Good Fats: Cook with alternating oils such as olive oil, avocado oil, and coconut oils. Add in nuts, seeds, olives, fermented products like sauerkraut, and ghee. Good fats like these are good to promote anti-inflammatory pathways!
- Hydration: at least half your body weight in ounces of room temperature water a day. In addition to any coffee or tea you have!
- Tea and coffee: herbal, ginger, turmeric, etc are great to support health! Coffee is very anti-inflammatory among other things but over 5 cups a day, studies are finding it does the opposite. So make your cups count and get high quality organic beans!
No Foods that PROMOTE inflammation = BAD include:
- Fried, fatty foods like fast food (french fries, baked goods, packaged foods that have ingredients that look like a chemistry lab for a name)
- Soda, even “sugar-free” soda
- Anything with “high fructose corn syrup”, propylene glycol, food dyes, or “artificial flavors”
- limit processed meats and pork products
How to get started:
First, do a pantry clean-out. Second, take this article and cookbooks below and get several ideas for lunch and dinner recipes. Create a list and go shopping!
There are so many great and easy cookbooks out there. I recommend:
Autoimmune Paleo Cookbook by Mickey Trescott and Any book by Maria Emmerick
A huge part of pain-relief and the prevention of disease begins with our gut and what we eat. This is the foundation of health, using Food as Medicine!
At the Pain Relief Project, it is our mission to help people become pain-free! We are a local 501c3 nonprofit clinic offering free or low-cost natural medicine and acupuncture services in Bothell and the greater Seattle Area. To learn more visit, www.painreliefproject.org or give our office a call today at (425) 686-4498.