We know that inflammation can lead to bloating and digestive issues, but dietitian and nutritionist Alex Caspero just enlightened us to its role in controlling weight. "Chronic inflammation can throw off your hunger mechanism and metabolism-regulating hormones, spur insulin resistance, and even cause you to hang onto water weight," she told Women's Health. Simply put, inflammation impairs our "master weight control hormone" leptin, which in turn leads to overeating, a slowed metabolism, and weight gain. If this sounds familiar, she recommends a diet rich in the following anti-inflammatory foods:
Salmon: Believe it our not, our bodies' inflammation-regulating compounds, prostaglandins, are made up of fat. Eating healthy fats like salmon and tuna can help encourage the inflammation-fighting prostaglandins in our bodies.
Flaxseeds: Surprisingly, flax contains "nature's highest concentration of plant-based omega-3s," which are healthy fatty acids, according to Caspero.
Blueberries: Blueberries are rich in bioflavonoids, which "have both antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties," notes Caspero.
Curry: Turmeric is actually the main ingredient in curry—and it's also one of the most anti-inflammatory foods on the planet. This traditional Indian spice also contains bioflavonoids.
Tart cherries: Researchers from Oregon Health and Science University hailed tart cherries as having "the highest anti-inflammatory content of any food." They're packed with anthocyanins and antioxidants known to reduce inflammation better than medicine.
Edamame: Rich in isoflavones and omega-3 fatty acids, edamame can "lower levels of C-reactive protein, a marker of inflammation," says Caspero.
For more, read up on the two foods a gut health doctor won't eat, and share your favorite anti-inflammatory food below.