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Health TipsRecipe

Anti-inflammatory diet – day on a plate!

By 09/07/2018 No Comments

I often get asked for tips on how to reduce inflammation in the body. As a Nutritionist, I am well aware that the foods we eat, the state of our gut, chronic infections and even our mindset can lead to inflammation. While the body has its own mechanisms in place to put out any fires in the body, we can help support this process through taking care of our health and diet.

If you aren’t familiar with the term ‘inflammation,’ it is the body’s natural response to injury (inflammatory trigger) and involves the production of pro-inflammatory chemicals to fight off the inflammatory trigger. Acute inflammation can be beneficial but chronic inflammation can lead to tissue damage, accumulation of free radicals and a weakened defence system. Inflammation has also been identified as an underlying driver of many chronic health conditions such as type 2 diabetes, gastrointestinal disease and even mood disorders. If you are wondering which foods can trigger inflammation and which can help quash it, keep reading below:

Inflammatory foods to weed out of the diet include:

  • Excess refined sugar and salt/sodium – processed/packaged foods, baked goods etc
  • Processed meats and high intake of fatty cuts of red meat
  • Poor quality oils – soy, corn, safflower – including foods deep fried in such oils
  • Eating foods we are sensitive or intolerant to

Anti-inflammatory foods to boost in the diet include:

  • Foods high in polyunsaturated omega-3 fatty acids – salmon, sardines, walnuts, flaxseeds, hemp and chia seeds
  • Foods high in monounsaturated fats such as avocado, macadamia nuts, extra virgin olive oil
  • Fibre and polyphenol rich legumes – chickpeas, lentils, red kidney beans, cannellini beans, black beans etc
  • Anti-oxidant rich fruit – kiwi fruit, papaya, berries, pineapple, red grapes
  • Anti-oxidant rich vegetables – red cabbage, sweet potato, carrot, kale, spinach, asparagus, cabbage, tomatoes, beetroot, capsicum, broccoli etc
  • Herbs and spices – coriander, turmeric, rosemary, garlic, ginger
  • Extras – green tea and dark chocolate/cocoa

Anti-inflammatory Diet – Day on a plate

 Breakfast

  • Green tea with lemon (lemon increases the absorption of antioxidants within the green tea)
  • Whole rolled oat porridge with hemp and chia seeds, walnuts, kiwi and blueberries

Snack

  • Seed crackers or vegetable sticks + avocado hummus (add ½-1 full avocado to a regular hummus recipe) 

Lunch

  • Lentil and vegetable soup; or
  • Salad bowl using leafy greens, shaved red cabbage, grated beetroot, cherry tomatoes, chickpeas, roasted sweet potato, cooked brown rice + macadamia and orange dressing (whisk together 1-2 tsp. macadamia butter, pinch turmeric, pinch chilli flakes and ¼-1/3 cup fresh orange juice until a dressing like consistency forms)

Snack

  • ½ cup diced papaya, raspberries with a squeeze of fresh lime juice, raw nuts and seeds

Dinner

Dessert

  • 2 squares dark chocolate (at least 70%) and peppermint tea