There are a lot of things to avoid when trying to reduce inflammation in our body. Whether it be foods we have sensitivities to, sugar, nightshades, processed foods or wheat and corn, the list can be daunting. So instead of looking at all the “dont’s”, today I’d like to focus on the “do’s”.
Foods that can reduce inflammation:
- Ginger – very popular and widely used as part of Chinese herbalism where fresh ginger is used to help fight colds while dried ginger is used to “warm the interior and dispel cold”. From a western perspective, ginger inhibits both “COX-enzyme” and “nuclear factor kappa-ß” (NF-KB), both of which are molecules involved in inflammatory pathways.
- Turmeric – another “COX-enzyme” inhibitor this spice is called Jiang Huang in Chinese herbal medicine where it is classified as an herb that “moves blood” and is used to treat pain (especially shoulder pain). Considering that chronic inflammation often causes joint pain, makes sense that this anti-inflammatory herb is used to alleviate pain.
- Green tea – high in antioxidants, this tea is great at fighting free-radicals and thereby soothing inflammation
- Licorice – another very commonly used herb in Chinese medicine where it is called Gan Cao. It is used in most herbal formulas to harmonize and moderate the characteristics of other herbs. One of its functions is the clear “toxic heat”, which is a phrase used to describe inflammation or infection in the body.
- Omega 3 fatty acids – Omega 3’s are an essential part of cellular health and are considered “NF-KB inhibitors”.
- Garlic – Called Da Suan in Chinese herbal medicine, it has been used for centuries to fight parasites and is said to have detoxing properties
- Clove extract – Called Ding Xiang this herb is another “NF-KB inhibitor” found in the “warm the interior and dispel cold” category of Chinese medicine.
Reducing some of the inflammatory foods discussed in previous posts, plus adding these healing foods will go a long way in reducing inflammation, and you should notice decreased joint pain, increased energy, and better focus among some of the more obvious changes to your health.