Wellness

Anti-Inflammatory Diet Helps Relieve Pain

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Inflammation is a sign that the body is cleansing itself of toxins. This process causes pain, and if it continues for an extended amount of time, chronic pain and the risk of developing certain health conditions, such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes, Alzheimer's disease and depression, increase.

An anti-inflammatory diet is rich in vegetables and positively impacts the quality of life for individuals dealing with chronic pain. Those who adhere to a strict vegan or Mediterranean diet may experience decreased pain levels. In many cases, an anti-inflammatory diet also counteracts certain pain medication side effects, such as brain fog, memory loss and fatigue. Also, current research shows that an anti-inflammatory diet helps decrease the pain associated with fibromyalgia.

Basic Anti-Inflammatory Diet Suggestions

— Eat eight-to-nine servings of vegetables on a daily basis. Cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage and cauliflower, are optimal. Some servings may be replaced with fruit.

— Limit consumption of dairy products and grains. When selecting grains, avoid simple carbohydrates with refined sugar; instead, choose whole grains, such as buckwheat, barley, oats, quinoa, brown rice, rye, spelt and wheat.

— Red meat should be consumed infrequently; opt for fish or vegetarian main dishes. Chicken is a neutral choice as it is neither harmful nor helpful when following an anti-inflammatory diet.

Maintaining a healthy weight or losing pounds to achieve an ideal weight is also beneficial in reducing inflammation. Daily exercise and stress management help to reduce inflammation as well.

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