Inflammation is part of the body’s immune response that helps the body heal itself, bringing white blood cells to the area of concern with increased blood flow. Inflammation in a healthy body is normal, but when it gets out of control, it can damage the body, attacking healthy body tissues, which can lead to things like joint pain, fatigue, damage to blood vessels, as well as more serious issues like autoimmune disorders, celiac (gluten allergy), Rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, and even cancer. Foods high in sugar and trans fats (pretty much all processed foods!) spur inflammation and cause the immune system to work too hard. BUT- There are way to promote an anti-inflammatory lifestyle!
Antioxidants are important for a healthy body. These little guys are going to help fight off free radicals and keep your cells functioning at a healthy level. Foods like berries, leafy greens, artichokes, tomatoes, broccoli, green tea and nuts like pecans and walnuts and seeds like flax and chia are all full of antioxidants. Ginger and turmeric (the spice) have been proven to be some of the most powerful antioxidants; you can even buy turmeric in capsule or powder form to get in the anti inflammatory benefits on a daily basis! These antioxidants also work to fight inflammation, which can cause damage to your cells and tissues. Antioxidants help fight and repair this damage, which equates to a pumped up immune system. Because all foods that are high in antioxidants are nutrient dense and most are low in calories, they can also help you maintain a healthy weight. Fruits, veggies, seeds and nuts should be a part of any healthy, balanced diet, but focussing on these foods (rather than processed foods of course) can also help maintain a healthy weight.