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How Nutrition Can Reduce Inflammation

How Nutrition Can Reduce Inflammation

Nutrition Can Reduce Chronic Inflammation and Help You Live Longer

If I told you one single danger was going to kill 50% of people on Earth, I’m guessing you’d want to know what it was and how to stop it.

That threat is inflammation. Not the short-term, healthy inflammation we have when we fight off bacteria or viruses, but chronic inflammation. This is where the body’s immune system releases pro-inflammatory cytokines and other immune mediators over long periods of time, even when there is no infection present.

Persistent, low-grade inflammation underlies almost every chronic illness we have, including heart, metabolic, autoimmune, and neurological diseases. For example, chronic inflammation in the arterial walls can lead to the formation of plaques and increase the risk of heart attacks and stroke. Similarly, chronic inflammation in the brain has been linked to the development of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia.

As the engine driving our chronic diseases, inflammation is now responsible for over half of all deaths worldwide.

We don’t yet fully understand all of the causes of long-term inflammation. However, we have good evidence that some of the most common triggers include: diet, chronic infections, inactivity, obesity, gut dysbiosis, pollutants, and lifestyle factors like stress, isolation, and poor sleep.

I hope it doesn’t sound strange, but this is such a hopeful list!

Many of these factors are in our direct control. As a nutritionist, I work with clients facing chronic inflammation (which is nearly all of them) in a precise fashion to improve the inflammatory profile of their diet, shed excess weight, improve gut health, and eliminate toxins. These efforts combine in powerful ways to quell inflammation, improve painful symptoms, and restore health and vitality.

Please reach out if you’d like to work with me in a supportive 1:1 setting to improve your health by lowering chronic inflammation.

In the meantime, nearly everyone can benefit from these tips to lower inflammation with simple dietary changes.

Limit or avoid these highly inflammatory foods:

  • vegetable and seed oils
  • fried foods
  • soft drinks
  • sweets and added sugars
  • artificial sweeteners
  • refined carbohydrates (e.g. bagels, white breads, pastas)
  • fast foods
  • processed meats
  • grain-fed meat
  • alcohol

Enjoy these delicious, anti-inflammatory foods:

Foods with high omega-3 fatty acids, like:

  • cold-water fish (preferably wild caught)
  • flaxseeds
  • walnuts

Foods with high levels of antioxidants, such as:

  • vegetables
  • citrus fruits
  • garlic
  • onion
  • green tea

Spices and herbs like:

  • ginger
  • rosemary
  • turmeric
  • oregano
  • cayenne

Erika Rothacker, ACN, RDN, LD is a registered dietitian nutritionist at Renaissance Health Center. Please call our main office at 702-258-7860 to schedule an appointment with her today!

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