Many modern diseases and conditions have what we would term an inflammatory response. Arthritis is a particularly painful inflammatory response as is chronic back pain.
Fats and Oils – Omega 3 essential fatty acids are very powerful anti-inflammatory agents. They are converted into hormone like substances called prostaglandins. They are found in cold water oily fish such as salmon, mackerel or herring, flaxseed (sometimes called linseed) and their oil. Omega 6 fats are also responsible for reducing inflammation and pain and they can be found in pumpkin, sunflower, safflower and sesame seed oils.
Fruit and Vegetables – Green and brightly coloured vegetables and fruits can help the inflammatory process. The pigment in brightly coloured fruit, vegetables and in particular berries, contain many phytochemicals and anti-oxidants that have anti-inflammatory properties. For example quercetin which can be found in the skins of red apples and re onions is a natural anti-histamine and anti-inflammatory.
Spices – The spice tumeric is thought to have anti inflammatory properties and is often recommended for those with arthritis. It can be added to food in the natural way or taken as a supplement
If you are suffering from an inflammatory disease, it would also be wise to avoid pro-inflammatory foods that might increase your pain and inflammation.
Foods to avoid include any junk food and fast food, especially trans-fats and saturated fats. Too much saturated fat means too much arachidonic acid which although essential in the right amounts can be responsible for making your inflammation worse if you consume too much.
Diets high in sugar have also been associated with inflammation and so should be avoided. Another possible cause for concern is foods that come from the deadly nightshade family. Foods such as potatoes, tomatoes and eggplant have been known to aggravate the pain of inflammation.
Adjusting your diet in this way is the first line of defence for any anti-inflammatory regime. Such dietary changes ideally, need to be initiated early on in the disease if they are to have any noticeable effect.