Inflammation is a killer

FOLLOWING a diet which is packed with foods that lower the markers of inflammation in our bodies, can lower our risk for an early death.

If you’re hoping to live a long and healthy life, you might want to embrace an anti-inflammatory diet. This is one which includes foods like fruits and vegetables, and mostly steers clear of processed foods, associated with a lower risk of death at an early age.

A research study looked at 68,273 Swedish men and women, between the ages of 45 and 83. They were followed for 16 years, and those who stuck with a mostly anti-inflammatory diet had an 18% lower risk of all-cause mortality, 13% lower risk of dying from cancer, and 20% lower risk of dying from heart disease.

What is an anti-inflammatory diet?

The kind of diet that focuses on foods high in nutrients, especially antioxidants, has been been associated with lowering the markers of inflammation in our bodies.

Foods such as fruits, vegetables, legumes, healthy fats – like those that come from olive oil and avocado – fish, nuts, and dark chocolate are recommended. Red wine is sometimes considered to be a component of an anti-inflammatory diet, though it should be consumed in moderation.

However, an anti-inflammatory diet isn’t just about what you eat, but what you don’t eat. Foods high in salt, sugar and refined carbohydrates should be limited or avoided.

When these kinds of foods are consumed in excess, they’re linked to higher markers for inflammation, which is tied to almost every kind of chronic disease, and presents a greater risk for cancer and diabetes.

Inflammation is a complicated process that even the most knowledgeable scientists don’t completely understand. But there is some research to support that eating recommended foods, like fruits, vegetables and healthy fats, can reduce the risk for chronic diseases that have an inflammatory component, such as cardiovascular disease, Type 2 diabetes, and some types of cancer.

At the supermarket

Sticking with fresh options will always minimise the consumption of processed foods. Try to avoid frozen meals and pizzas, snacks and quick-cook items. Sugar, or even some red-meat options, can contribute to inflammation when eaten in excess, so even when you avoid processed foods, that may not be enough to completely fit into an anti-inflammatory diet.

Cost can sometimes be a problem. Many of the recommended foods on an anti-inflammatory diet are often more expensive than less-healthy options.

But there are strategies you can use to eat well, without emptying your bank account, including buying frozen fruits and vegetables, which are just as high in nutrients as fresh versions, and focusing on plant-based proteins like beans and lentils, and buying foods in bulk,

The long-term benefits of switching to an anti-inflammatory diet far outweigh the immediate costs. Big dietary shifts can be challenging in ways many people don’t think about, but they can also be mentally and physically rewarding.

After the body and mind have adapted, adjust your routine to make time to cook and prepare food, and find ways to make your grocery budget work for you.

Certain foods can’t be eaten with some medications, and those on particular blood thinners need to monitor their Vitamin K intake. This vitamin is high in many vegetables.

Extreme dietary shifts can be intimidating for many people, so easing into these changes is the best approach for long-term success.



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Posted by on Oct 19 2018. Filed under Health & Beauty. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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