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 foods that actively help to eliminate inflammation to avoid weight gain and keep you feeling your best. Here are 10 of the best anti-inflammatory foods you can eat.
Believe it or 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.
Surprisingly, flax contains "nature's highest concentration of plant-based omega-3s," which are healthy fatty acids, according to Caspero.
Blueberries are rich in bioflavonoids, which "have both antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties," notes Caspero.
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.
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.
Rich in isoflavones and omega-3 fatty acids, edamame can "lower levels of C-reactive protein, a marker of inflammation," says Caspero.
Studies have found that the high levels of flavonoid content found in green tea make it the best anti-inflammatory compared to other varieties of tea.
According to a 2006 study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, eating whole grains can lower levels of C-reactive protein, linking this food to inflammation. Just be sure to steer clear of refined grains like those found in processed cereals.
Bok Choy contains vitamins K, A, and C, which are all-natural anti-inflammatories. Add this green leafy vegetable to your grocery list and start incorporating it in your regular diet.
Ginger has long been utilized in Ayurvedic medicine as a natural remedy for a variety of health issues. Used dried or fresh, the root is one of the best anti-inflammatory foods.
Add these anti-inflammatory foods to your diet right away and start feeling the benefits. It's time to eat like a dietitian.
This post was originally published on April 21, 2017, and has since been updated.