Inflammation is your body’s immune response to injury or infection. But what about the chronic inflammation we’re hearing so much about these days? Chronic inflammation is a similar biological response that is not always as obvious because it’s not visible like a cut or a sprain. Over time though, chronic inflammation can damage healthy tissue and lead to serious illness including heart disease, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis and even Alzheimer’s.
How Do I Know if I Have Chronic Inflammation?
There are some common signs that could indicate you are dealing with chronic inflammation. Again, this is not the bloating you might feel after one too many drinks or a Chinese takeout meal, but your body can exhibit signs of chronic inflammation.
According to the National Institutes of Health, these symptoms include aches and pains–including headaches or migraine–fatigue, insomnia, depression and anxiety, as well as gastrointestinal upset like abdominal pain, constipation, diarrhea and heartburn.
What Can I Do to Prevent Chronic Inflammation?
There are things you can do to prevent or even reverse chronic inflammation and its negative health consequences. Cutting out smoking, reducing the amount of alcohol you drink, maintaining a healthy weight and managing stress through exercise, meditation and even therapy can keep inflammation in check.
We know there are inflammatory foods we should eat in moderation or avoid entirely. These include simple carbohydrates like white bread and sugary sweets, fried foods and processed lunch meats, hot dogs and sausage.
When a client needs an anti-inflammatory diet, we also remove gluten, dairy, sugar, grains, soy, and any ingredients to which they are sensitive.
What Should I Eat to Prevent Inflammation?
We also know there are anti-inflammatory foods that should comprise the bulk of our diet. Fruits and vegetables, especially leafy greens like spinach and kale, tomatoes and berries all combat inflammation. Olive oil, nuts and fatty fish like salmon, tuna and sardines also reduce inflammation and risk of chronic disease.
Ancient Eastern medicines like Ayurveda have long relied on herbology to treat disease and balance the body. Herbs and spices including black pepper, turmeric, ginger, cilantro, cardamon, garlic, cinnamon, cayenne, cumin and rosemary are known to contain anti-inflammatory and antioxidant compounds and have long been used to treat inflammation. Good news for chocolate lovers, cacao also makes this list.
This is one of our original Autoimmune Protocol (AIP diet) recipes. We eliminate gluten, dairy, soy, grains and nightshades.
AIP Chicken Fried “Rice”
2 pounds organic chicken breast, boneless, skinless cut into cubes
2 teaspoons coconut oil
2 medium carrot split in half lengthwise and cut thinly on bias
2 garlic cloves, minced
30 ounces cauliflower “rice”
1/2 scallion bunch thinly sliced
2 tablespoons coconut aminos
1/4 teaspoon(s) sesame oil
1 small baby bok choy thinly sliced to taste
Sauté chicken and set aside
Clean the skillet and stir fry the carrots, cauliflower rice, and bok choy until tender-crisp.
Add the garlic, sesame oil, coconut aminos and chicken. Stir to combine. Add in scallions and combine.
Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.
Stir in chicken.
At The Pickled Beet, we understand that our busy lives can make it difficult or even impossible to shop for and prepare healthy meals based around anti-inflammatory ingredients. But that is exactly what we specialize in. We work with you to design menus that incorporate fresh, organic produce and flavorful herbs and spices to create delicious, varied and satisfying meals for you and your family. Contact us for a free consultation.