grapes

Foods that Calm Inflammation (So You Can Have More Energy!)

fire within

The fire within.  Photo by Cullan Smith on Unsplash

Did you know that you can use foods to calm inflammation so you can have more energy?   Fatigue issues can be connected to inflammation within the body.  This all starts in the digestive tract.

Being overly tired and feeling like “someone pulled the plug on you” is a sign along with other symptoms you may be having.

Scientists are measuring levels of inflammation in our bodies and finding that chronic inflammation can be detrimental to our health.

It is also linked to problems with detoxification within our gut and liver. Symptoms of poor gut motility, IBS, poor sleep and stomach pain can lead to low immune function, causing a lack of energy and feeling of well-being.

However, there is something you can do about it!  Anti-inflammatory foods that are rich in antioxidants are proven to be helpful in reducing inflammation in the body.

Here are some of my top anti-inflammatory food recommendations:

Berries, Grapes, and Cherries

grapes

Berries, grapes, and cherries fight inflammation.  They are packed with fiber, and antioxidant vitamins (e.g. vitamin C) and minerals (e.g. manganese).

Phytochemicals (phyto=plant) such as “anthocyanins” and “resveratrol” are found in these small and delicious fruits.

In fact, berries, grapes, and cherries may be the best dietary sources of these amazingly healthy compounds.

Broccoli and Peppers

broccoli

Broccoli is a cruciferous vegetable that contains the naturally occurring chemical called “sulforaphane.” This anti-inflammatory compound helps neutralize harmful toxins in the Phase 2 liver detox pathway that we are exposed to in our food, water, and air.

Bell peppers, on the other hand, are one of the best sources of antioxidants vitamin C and quercetin.

Be mindful to choose red peppers over the other colors. Red peppers are fully ripe and have more anti-inflammatory properties than the other colors.

Healthy Fats

avocado

Choosing the right fats is so important for your health. The fat controversy is still alive and well. It is recommended to keep your daily intake of saturated fats below 10 percent and increase your consumption of unsaturated fats.

However, damaged or “trans fats” are very inflammatory. So it is best to consume more anti-inflammatory foods that are listed below:

fresh avocados

extra virgin olive oil,

small fish (e.g. sardines and mackerel),

and wild fish (e.g. salmon).

Omega 3 foods like:

chia seeds,

hemp seeds,

and flax seeds.

Give this recipe for avocado superfood pudding a try.

Green Tea

green tea

Green tea contains the anti-inflammatory compound called “epigallocatechin-3-gallate”, otherwise known as EGCG.

EGCG is linked to a reduced risk of heart disease, certain cancers, obesity, and Alzheimer’s. I think we can all use more of this compound, don’t you?

Drinking steeped green tea is great, but have you tried matcha green tea? It’s thought to contain even higher levels of antioxidants than regular green tea.

Turmeric

turmeric

This list would not be complete without the amazing spice turmeric?

Turmeric contains the antioxidant curcumin.

This compound has been shown to reduce the pain of arthritis, as well as have anti-cancer and anti-diabetes properties.

You can easily add turmeric to your egg dishes, smoothies, soups or teas.

Ginger

ginger

This versatile spice is famous in Asian cooking and has strong anti-inflammatory properties.  Gingersol is one molecule that can help with inflammation of the GI tract.  

You can use ginger in many recipes, including stir fries.

Read more about the benefits of ginger for your energy goals here.

Dark Chocolate

dark chocolate

I had to save the best for last! This *may* be slightly more decadent than my #1 pick of berries, grapes, and cherries.

Dark chocolate, with at least 70% cocoa is packed with anti-inflammatory antioxidants (namely “flavonols”). These reduce the risk of heart disease by keeping your arteries healthy.

They’ve even been shown to prevent “neuroinflammation” (inflammation of the brain and nerves). Reducing neuro-inflammation may help with long-term memory, and reduce the risk of dementia and stroke.

Make sure you avoid the sugary “candy bars.” You already know those aren’t going to be anti-inflammatory!

For more information cocoa and cocao, you can read this informative article by Leesa Klich. and enjoy this anti-inflammatory recipe for hot cocoa.

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Conclusion

There are just so many delicious and nutritious anti-inflammatory foods you can choose. They range from colorful berries, vegetables, and spices, to healthy fats, and even cocoa.

If you are struggling with digestive and fatigue issues, I would love to talk with you to see how I can help. Just click the link below and schedule a free call with me.

Luana Flacco, Holistic Nutrition Professional

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