Ask a Nutritionist: Anti-Inflammatory Foods

Ask a Nutritionist: Anti-Inflammatory Foods

It is not easy to deal with a chronic condition. Whether you come upon it from old age or poor past nutrition, it can be frustrating to live with. Arthritis, IBS, asthma, hepatitis, and all other inflammatory diseases can sap your energy, reduce your quality of life, and just cause a lot of frustration. However, while there is not always a cure for chronic conditions, there are ways that they can be managed. A healthy diet will at the very least decrease inflammation issues down the road and will give you more good days than bad ones. So, what can you do to at least give yourself more good days than bad ones? Here are some foods that nutritionists say has anti-inflammatory properties that can help.


Foods with Anti-Inflammatory Properties

Olive and Flaxseed Oil

Not a lot of people talk about the difference between oils that are good for you, and those that are not. Most people tend to write off fat or oils as something bad for you and tend to leave it at that. But not all oils are the same.  It all boils down to the type of fat that resides in the oil. In the case of olive oil and flaxseed oil, both contain omega 3 fatty acids. These are essential to heart health.  In fact, they are associated with reduced inflammation, improved heart health and protection for the brain against aging.

Olive oil also has something called oleic acid. This specifically reduces inflammation. There have also been studies involving beneficial effects against certain cancers.

If you can, add olive oil in your cooking, this might help in the fight against chronic inflammation.

Salmon and other Fatty Fish

The reason this is good for anti-inflammatory diets is the same as the reasons for olive oils. Fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, and albacore tuna have the same omega -3 fatty acids. They also have the added benefit of protein and can even decrease the risk of heart attack or stroke.

While there is a potential risk of mercury from some fish, it is minimal if you are careful about where you get them from.  If you limit your intake of fish to 3.5 ounces to at least twice a week and eat a variety of types, you are much less likely to get mercury intake issues.

Five of the most commonly eaten fish or shellfish that are low in mercury are shrimp, canned light tuna, salmon, pollock, and catfish.

Green, Leafy, Vegetables

anti-inflammatory foods

While this is a no brainer where a healthy diet is concerned, not many people realize why it is good anti-inflammatory food. Not only do they include fiber to keep you regular, but they also have folate and vitamin K. The vitamin and mineral combination is enough to decrease the rate of cognitive decline. With only 1-2 servings a day! So if you are worried about Alzheimer’s or any other inflammation issues that affect brain functions.  According to the studies,” The consumption of green leafy vegetables, including spinach, kale, collards, and lettuce, had the strongest association with slowed cognitive decline. ”

So, add leafy greens to your diet if you want their anti-aging properties.

Herbs and Spices

Not only are they good for making bland dishes more exciting but a lot of them have anti-inflammatory properties. Turmeric and Ginger, for example. They are proven from studies to be anti-inflammatory.  There are quite a few herbs and spices that are common in most cooking that also have anti-inflammatory properties. Garlic, a commonly known one, has glutathione, a powerful antioxidant that helps drive down the inflammation in the body.

Another is oregano. Oregano has antioxidants and a micronutrient called carvacrol. Carvacrol has been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties.  The list of spices that have anti-inflammatory properties is a mile long. These include cinnamon, cumin, chili peppers, clove, rosemary, and sage. Any nutritionist would recommend adding these to your daily diet.


An anti-inflammatory diet is not hard to follow, and there are plenty of foods that can give you the benefits you need. While it might require some changes, such as limiting sugar, salt, and refined carbohydrates from the daily diet, the results can work wonders.  If you have any questions or are just unfamiliar with coming up with a long-term nutrition plan, feel free to contact us! An involved nutritionist will not only help you find what you are looking for but will walk with you every step of the way.