Today, I’ve put together a printable anti-inflammatory foods list pdf that is packed with all the best foods for inflammation. That said, you may want to continue reading to learn more about the benefits of these anti-inflammatory foods for your health.
Using food as a medicine to reduce inflammation can help you reduce other health conditions like heart problems, diabetes, high cholesterol, and high blood sugar levels as well. Here’s how:
So inflammation is very common because it occurs naturally when the immune system responds to stress, injury, infection, and toxins. That said, when inflammation lingers in the body for more than six weeks, it becomes chronic inflammation.
Chronic inflammation is not good because it damages healthy cells and tissue in the body. It also causes a number of health problems such as cancer, heart problems, diabetes, and autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, chrons disease, and ulcerative colitis.
Signs Of Inflammation
There are many signs and symptoms of inflammation, however, it is very important not to self-diagnose. A simple blood test that measures your C-reactive protein levels (inflammatory markers) is the best way to test for inflammation.
If these protein levels are too high, you may need further tests to determine the underlying cause. Additionally, the following symptoms can also be caused by other underlying health conditions.
- Body and joint pain
- Swelling and redness
- Loss of function
- Frequent infections
- Depression & Anxiety
- Stomach problems and acid reflux
Anti Inflammatory Diet
So before we begin with the best food for inflammation list, I highly recommend getting on an anti-inflammatory diet plan. It’s important because you have to eliminate inflammatory foods from your diet to see any real results.
One of the best anti-inflammatory diets ever created is the Mediterranean diet because it consists of foods that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin C, polyphenols, and fiber. Here is a free 1-week Mediterranean diet plan to get you started.
I also recommend you add a lot of water to your diet, get enough sleep and take one-hour walks 4-5 times per week to reduce inflammation while on the diet. (it really helped me)
Anti Inflammatory Foods
Foods that reduce inflammation in the body contain antioxidants that target free radicals and oxidative stress both of which are common causes of inflammation.
They also contain omega-3 fatty acids which speed up the healing process of cells and tissue damage caused by inflammation.
Lastly, anti-inflammatory foods are packed with essential vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber which makes them perfect for your overall health.
Anti-Inflammatory Food List PDF
There is an amazing research called the inflammation scale study which is a downloadable pdf that explains a lot about inflammation. I highly recommend you get it, Don’t worry it’s completely free.
Most of the foods on the list below are from the inflammation scale study but I’ve added other foods that have helped me reduce my symptoms. Please download your Anti-Inflammatory Foods List PDF. (no email required).
Many studies show that eating adding leafy green and cruciferous vegetables to your diet is essential for reducing inflammation.
That’s because these types of vegetables contain a variety of antioxidants, flavanoids, and polyphenols along with vitamins and minerals.
Leafy green vegetables are packed with A, B, C, E, and K vitamins along with antioxidants such as beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin.
Along with leafy green and cruciferous vegetables, carrots, tomatoes, and sweet potatoes contain lycopene and beta-carotene which are powerful antioxidants. Anti-inflammatory vegetables include:
- Collard Greens
- Swiss Chard
- Iceberg | Romaine Lettuce
- Brussels Sprouts
- Bok Choy
- Sweet Potatoes
- Bell Peppers
- Garlic & Onions
- Yellow Or Orange Squash
Legumes are high in folic acid, protein, iron, and vitamin B6. They also contain antioxidants such as flavonoids, phenolic acids, lignans, and tannins.
Eating foods rich in folic acid, protein, iron, and vitamin B6 helps prevent and reduce inflammatory responses in the body. Best anti-inflammatory legumes include:
- String Beans
- Red Kidney Beans
- Lima Beans
- Black Beans
Anti Inflammatory Fruits
The list of anti-inflammatory fruits below contains a range of antioxidants, flavonoids, high amounts of vitamin C, and fiber.
Vitamin C speeds up cell and tissue regeneration caused by inflammation while dietary fiber plays an important role in gut health.
Increasing your fiber intake is important for lowering enzymes in the gut that are responsible for inflammation. The best fruits for inflammation include:
- Lemon & Limes
Research shows that one of the best ways to tackle and reduce inflammation in the body is by consuming foods high in omega-3 fatty acids.
That’s because omega-3-rich foods help regulate the production and secretion of pro-inflammatory cytokines which are molecules produced by inflammation.
The best types of anti-inflammatory proteins include:
- Chicken without skin
- Tuna without skin
Anti-Inflammatory Dairy, Coffee & Tea
I know you may be thinking why dairy is on the list of anti-inflammatory foods right? Well, that’s because they are a great source of calcium.
You see, calcium helps bind free fatty acids and bile acids in the gut which many studies show has a positive effect on inflammation.
So most people don’t know this but drinking coffee and tea can help reduce inflammation because they both contain flavonoids and antioxidants.
Tea is packed with epicatechin and quercetin while coffee contains antioxidants such as caffeine, trigonelline, and melanoidins. Here is a list of dairy, coffee, and tea:
- Regular & decaffeinated coffee
- Herbal & non-herbal tea
- Skim milk
- Cheese (low or high fat)
- Cream cheese
Anti-Inflammatory Nuts & Seeds
Nuts & seeds contain omega-3 fatty acids and alpha-linolenic acids which both help reduce pro-inflammatory cytokines and oxidative stress.
- Brazilian nuts
- Chia seeds
- Pumpkin seeds
- Watermelon seeds
- Sunflower seeds
- Sesame seeds
Anti-inflammatory Herbs & Spices
Below are some of the best spices and herbs that you can add to your recipes to help you reduce inflammation.
- Cayenne pepper
- Black pepper
Instead of going for white rice and pasta, go for the following whole grains below because they are filled with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that ward off inflammation.
- Brown rice
Anti-Inflammatory Fat Sources
To reduce inflammation, its important to reduce oil, butter, and mayonnaise intake so what healthy fats can you use instead? They are listed below.
- Almond oil
- Coconut oil
- Extra Virgin Olive oil
- Avocado oil
Inflammatory Foods To Avoid
Now that you have a list of anti-inflammatory foods, it’s important to also share some of the worst foods for inflammation.
If you suffer from arthritis, rheumatism, or other autoimmune diseases, it’s probably best to limit your consumption of the following foods. Foods that increase inflammation include:
- Red meat
- Processed meat
- Hot dog
- Sugary foods & drinks
- Canned fruits
- Refined grains
- Vegetables high in starch
Download your free Printable List Of Anti Inflammatory Foods.
Other Ways To Reduce Inflammation
Some of the most effective ways to reduce inflammation in your body faster are as follow:
Losing weight or maintaining a healthy weight is by far the best method of getting rid of inflammation naturally. Studies show that there is a very strong link between obesity and inflammation so losing weight is essential.
Try the Mediterranean diet above or this diet plan that helped me lose 16 pounds in just one month plus lower my CRP levels. You can also try anti-inflammatory smoothies and soup recipes to get the best results.
Did you know that drinking causes inflammation? Yep, numerous studies show that regular alcohol consumption can lead to intestinal inflammation.
That’s because alcohol puts a strain on the organs responsible for expelling toxins from your body which leads to low-grade inflammation.
If you can, stop drinking but if you must have a drink, go for red wine, it has a ton of antioxidants.
So we all know that smoking is a very bad habit and definitely not good for our health but we do it anyway. I know it’s hard to quit but for those of us with autoimmune diseases, smoking makes it worse.
According to this study, nicotine in cigarettes activates neutrophils (white blood cells) which release molecules that lead to inflammation.
Similar to losing weight, exercising regularly can get rid of inflammation completely! Don’t believe me? Take a look at this study.
Also, going for one-hour walks daily can get your inflammatory markers all the way down in just one month! I’ve tried it so I know it works!
How To Add Anti-Inflammatory Foods To Your Diet
Using food as medicine can be difficult because you have to quit the foods you love and begin a new way of eating. I know, it can be really frustrating but to attain optimal health, sacrifices need to be made.
Here is how to start adding anti-inflammatory foods to your diet gradually and hopefully, you will get used to them in no time.
- Start slowly by adding a variety of fruits and vegetables from the list above daily to your meals.
- Reduce the amount of carbs in your plate and add in more protein, whole grains, and vegetables.
- Make it a habit to snack on nuts and fruits from the list above and refrain from refined sugar.
- Go with smoothies as often as possible and make sure to add in some of the seeds from the list above.
- Choose fat from healthy sources such as nuts, seeds, olive oil, and coconut oil.
- Try not to overcook your vegetables to prevent the loss of minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants in the process.
- Eat whole grains instead of white rice. Go for brown rice instead.
- Drink a lot of smoothies, herbal teas, coffee, and red wine instead of sugary drinks.
Anti Inflammatory Recipes
The following anti-inflammatory recipes are made with ingredients from the list of foods above. I have tried most of them and highly recommend you do too!
- Best Turmeric Smoothie For Inflammation
- Tasty Anti-Inflammatory Raspberry Smoothie
- Pineapple Mango Anti-Inflammatory Smoothie
- Anti-Inflammatory Berry Smoothie
- Green Anti-Inflammatory Smoothie
- Anti-Inflammatory Banana Smoothie
- Anti-Inflammatory Blueberry Smoothie
- 7 Yummy Anti-Inflammatory Soup Recipes
I hope you liked this Complete Anti-Inflammatory Foods List PDF post and found it helpful. If you did, please leave your thoughts in the comments below and you can also find me on Pinterest for more awesome tips.