Easy Anti-Inflammatory Diet Food List

If you have chronic inflammation, an anti-inflammatory diet is worth a try if you want to take a natural approach to heal your body.

Since chronic inflammation can last for weeks, months, or years, a diet that’s rich in anti-inflammatories can reduce your pain and improve your general health. Ongoing inflammation is known to play a role in debilitating diseases such as heart disease, arthritis, diabetes, and asthma.  

Luckily, you can control — and sometimes even reverse — inflammation through improving your diet and overall lifestyle. 

Ready to combat inflammation in the body with food instead of pharmaceuticals? 

Here’s a look at how to incorporate an anti-inflammatory diet into your lifestyle.

What Causes Inflammation?

Before we dive into what the anti-inflammatory diet foods are, it’s important to understand what inflammation is and what causes bodily inflammation. 

It’s not always a bad thing to have some inflammation, especially during exercise and healing — it’s your body’s way of protecting itself after all — but it becomes a problem when it’s chronic. When you get “good inflammation,” if you will, your body knows it’s time to fight off foreign invaders like bacteria or work on healing an injury. An example of this would be when you get the common cold. 

The “bad” inflammation is the type that’s ongoing. This type of inflammation can be reduced by changing certain lifestyle factors

Risk factors for chronic inflammation include smoking, obesity, and excessive drinking. Additionally, what you eat can potentially cause inflammation throughout the body, and even kickstart long-term diseases like diabetes or heart disease.

When you cut back on the foods that can promote inflammation, you’ll probably notice a subtle difference before you notice major differences in how you feel. Changing your diet may take some time, but it’s a better way to lower your inflammation levels instead of relying solely on medication.

What is the Anti-Inflammatory Diet?

An anti-inflammatory diet is one rich in fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, healthful fats, and spices like turmeric and ginger. This diet limits the intake of red meat, processed foods, and alcohol.

Foods that aren’t a part of the anti-inflammatory diet? 

  • Soda 
  • Sugar 
  • Red meat
  • Fried foods 
  • Margarine, shortening, and lard
  • Processed meat (hot dogs, sausage)
  • Refined carbs (cakes, white bread, pastries, etc.)

This is a short list, but there may be other foods you find — like gluten — that create food intolerances or allergies for you. These are ones that you’ll want to nix as well under the care of a provider once you realize you have an inflammatory response to them.

Try The Anti-Inflammatory Diet Food List 

healthy anti-inflammatory foods on a white kitchen counter

 

Next time you need to go grocery shopping, consider giving the anti-inflammatory diet food list a try. Here’s a look at different food options to introduce healthy, wholesome ingredients into your lifestyle:

Avocados 

Avocados are excellent as an anti-inflammatory food as each one is full of antioxidants and monounsaturated fats that the body needs to reduce inflammatory responses. A study published in 2019 by the Department of Food Science at The Pennsylvania State University also found avocado extract — pulled from the seed — improved immunity.

Ways to include it in your diet:

  • Atop salads
  • As a topping on toast
  • Mashed up as guacamole 
  • Cut in half and sprinkled with sea salt

Broccoli 

It’s true that broccoli is excellent for your health in more ways than one. Full of antioxidants and vitamins, it has earned its spot on the vegetable wall of fame. Filled with vitamins C and K, folate, and fiber, along with other anti-inflammatory properties like Sulforaphane, this veggie is one that will keep you feeling healthy.

Ways to include it in your diet:

  • Use as a salad base 
  • Make a broccoli slaw
  • Steam it and top with sea salt
  • Add to a veggie-rich, ginger stir-fry

Cherries 

Tart cherries in particular are known to help with pain and inflammation. If you suffer from gout, a complex form of arthritis, cherry juice is a potential way to reduce the severity of a gout attack. One study also found that this fruit has the highest content of anti-inflammatory properties over any other food!

Ways to include it in your diet:

Extra Virgin Olive Oil 

Other than being extra delicious, extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) has other perks, too. EVOO contains the antioxidant, oleocanthal, which works similarly to ibuprofen. 

Ways to include it in your diet:

  • As a dressing 
  • Sautee veggies in it 
  • Use it in baked goods
  • Drizzle it over grilled veggies

Ginger 

Ginger is a spice that is frequently touted as a super anti-inflammatory root. Whether you’re dealing with headaches or another pain, ginger is almost guaranteed to help alleviate and banish some of your aches.

Ways to include it in your diet:

Mushrooms 

Certain edible mushrooms contain compounds that make them great anti-inflammatory options. Portobello mushrooms, Cordyceps mushrooms, lion’s mane, and shiitake mushrooms are all ideal picks when it comes to selecting which ones to try. Whether you eat them raw or slightly cooked, you can reap the benefits of mushrooms. Experts say raw is best to try if you’re after the anti-inflammatory perks.

Ways to include it in your diet:

Peppers

These brilliantly colored vegetables are a perfect way to get your daily dose of vitamin C and anti-inflammatory benefits. Both bell peppers and chili peppers offer strong antioxidants like quercetin and ferulic acid, which can promote healthier aging. Bell peppers are the most versatile of peppers to include in your everyday meals.

Ways to include it in your diet:

  • Atop a salad
  • Sauteed with olive oil
  • Grilled and drizzled with olive oil
  • Sliced and served with hummus

Spinach 

Filled with lutein, iron, vitamin K, and folate, this green veggie is all-around a healthy choice. Vitamin-K rich vegetables like spinach can reduce body inflammation. 

Ways to include it in your diet:

  • As a salad base
  • In a sandwich 
  • Blended into a smoothie
  • Sautéed with garlic and olive oil

Turmeric

The “Golden Spice” known as turmeric is a powerful anti-inflammatory that has consistently rated at the top of anti-inflammatory diet food lists. It has been used for thousands of years and is known to reduce painful inflammatory diseases like arthritis. It contains a powerful compound, curcumin. This compound is the reason it has such incredible healing powers — so much so that it’s able to reduce the inflammatory marker response on bloodwork in those individuals who regularly take it.

Ways to include it in your diet:

An Anti-Inflammatory Diet Can Improve Your Health

glass of ginger and turmeric juice on white table with ginger and lemons

 

If you like to take your health into your own hands and use a holistic approach, creating an anti-inflammatory diet food list is a great start. 

Keep inflammation away by maintaining a healthy lifestyle that includes rich, antioxidant foods. These foods can promote faster cell repair and boost your immune system, too.

Next time you shop, curate a list of recipes that incorporate these powerful ingredients from nature. As time goes on, you’ll find simple ways to bring these foods into your meals with ease. From tossing avocado into your daily smoothies and adding ginger shots into your perk-me-up afternoon routine, it will become second nature the more you do it.

What are some of your favorite ways to use the above anti-inflammatory foods? Let us know in the comments below! 

Need to reduce inflammation post-workout? Try VITALITY, our turmeric-rich shot, or IMMUNE+, which contains anti-inflammatory Cordyceps mushrooms. 




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