Hello! This week I thought I’d share how to treat low-grade inflammation. I’ve written previously some general information about low-grade inflammation HERE and promised then to return with tips how to treat this condition. So here you have it, the post how to treat low-grade inflammation with lifestyle choices like diet and training etc. I’ll divide this post to two parts as it’s going to be way too long otherwise. In the first part I’ll write down the general guidelines and ideas to follow when treating low-grade inflammation. In the second part I’ll sketch a day of a person who wants to treat low-grade inflammation. Good news is that treating this condition isn’t really rocket science. Common sense and healthy lifestyle give a lot of lever. Actually anyone interested in optimizing their health would benefit from these tips.
Vegetables: Think of vegetables and fruits as the base of your diet. Vibrantly colored vegetables are the best as they contain the biggest amounts of vitamins and nutrients that protect your body from inflammation and also prevent it.
➢ Greens (dark leafy greens, salads, kale), carrots, paprikas, tomatoes, broccoli, cabbage etc.
Olive oil: The king of the nutritional elements that protect from inflammation. Olive oil is thought to be the single most important factor in the Mediterranean diet that protects from many chronic diseases. Also other healthy oils and fats.
➢ Choose organic olive oil in dark glass bottle if possible.
➢ Organic butter, virgin coconut oil, avocado, seeds, nuts
Omega-3 and -6 balance: An important thing to consider. In the usual western diet the omega-3 and omega-6 ratio is often totally wrong. The ideal ratio to omega-6 and omega-3 is 2:1 which is found on indigenous groups of people that follow their traditional diet. On the average for example in the USA the ratio is 25:1 so there is some work to do with this.
➢ Oily fish and omega-3 supplement to regular use
➢ Chia seeds, organic eggs
Strong spices and herbs: For example ginger is one of the natures own NSAID: s (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug), for example THIS tea!
➢ garlic, turmeric, ginger, chili, paprika, parsley, dill, cilantro
Protein from healthy sources: Find your own way (vegetarian, paleo, vegan etc.) Aim to eat the cleanest and most natural sources of protein. Favor organic and ethically produced foods.
➢ (organic) cottage cheese, feta cheese, cheeses that are made of unpasteurized milk, lentils, beans, organic eggs, organic meat, fish
Minimize: Dogmatism isn’t necessary but it’s a great thing to try to replace these with healthier options or consume seldomly.
➢ White sugar and white processed grains. Avoid gluten if you feel better without of it (This you’ll know by trying)
➢ Processed dairy like milk that you buy from the regular grocery store. (sour milk products like yogurt and cheeses are okay with moderation)
➢ Trans-fats for example margarin/processed spreads, cookies, cakes and muffins that last “forever”
➢ Convenience foods, puddings, fast-food
➢ Alcohol (biodynamic red wine is probably the best option)
Stress: Aim for reducing and avoiding too much stress. Take time for yourself just for being everyday. Start meditating instructions HERE. Focus on the good and live in the now.
DISCLAIMER: If you feel stressed and anxious for example for these tips try to think that your goal is to treat yourself in the best possible way and with love therefore you do what you do even though the changes might feel challenging at moments. This mindset can reduce the stress that might be linked to changing your lifestyle.
Training: Moderate exercise everyday. For example daily walks, stretching, light yoga (excellent for stress reduction also) In addition about two aerobic exercise sessions that make you sweat in a week plus two times strength training. Training too much isn’t necessary because in some cases too much training could even be pro-inflammatory as it might increase the oxidative stress in the body.
Lastly I would like to say that it isn’t necessary to follow any of these lifestyle tips religiously. I try to avoid extreme of thinking and dogmatism as much as possible. Your world won’t crash and you won’t be destroyed by low-grade inflammation if you sometimes eat fast food or drink alcohol on the weekend didn’t train in week or there would be a lot of stress at work. The aim to the ideal and little daily choices matter. Attitude matters. Even only with positivity and good feelings you can dissolve low-grade inflammation. Sometimes you need that chocolate or a weekend when you do nothing for those good feelings. I cannot stress too much the importance of balance.
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Have an amazing day!