Have you ever heard the old adage, “You are what you eat?” There is real wisdom in those words. While some foods can harm you and cause inflammation, there are many tasty foods that help to reduce it. It is possible, through change of diet, to ease swollen joints and ankles, finger pain, and even symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis.
Below there are some healthy foods that help to reduce inflammation as well as a tasty recipe made with some of them.
1. Dark Leafy Greens– Dark greens and cruciferous vegetables (cauliflower, cress, cabbage, bok choy or broccoli) tend to have higher concentrations of vitamins and minerals, like calcium, iron, and disease fighting phytochemicals, than those with lighter colored leaves. Additionally, studies have suggested that vitamin E may play a key role in protecting the body from inflammatory molecules called cytokines, and one of the best sources of this vitamin is dark green veggies such as spinach, kale, broccoli, beet greens and collard greens.
2. Garlic and Onions– There is a good reason why these pungent vegetables are known for their immunity boosting properties. In recent studies, garlic has been shown to work similarly to NSAID pain medications (like ibuprofen), shutting off the pathways that lead to inflammation. Onions contain similar inflammation fighting chemicals.
3. Raw Apple Cider Vinegar– Apple cider vinegar has a long history of use in medicine dating back to 400 B.C., when Hippocrates used it to treat his patients. The anti-inflammatory properties of apple cider vinegar work to help internal inflammation within the gastrointestinal tract when added to salads or taken diluted with water. It helps to reduce bloating, and heartburn as well.
4. Green Tea– Besides reducing your risk of heart disease and cancer, green tea works like liquid vegetables as it stages an anti-inflammatory fight inside your body. In addition to the green tea, be sure to drink at least 8 eight oz glasses of water a day.
I hope you enjoy the following recipe. I usually make this dish at least 3 to 4 times a month as it is a favorite at my house.
- 6-8 cups chopped dark leafy greens such as kale, collard greens, or swiss chard
- 1 large onion, chopped coarse
- 5 garlic cloves, minced very fine (more to taste if you desire)
- ¼ c. raw apple cider vinegar
- ½ c. water
- 2 T. extra virgin olive oil
- salt and pepper
- Place large pot over medium heat, add olive oil and once hot, add the onions.
- Saute the onions until translucent and beginning to caramelize.
- Lower the heat slightly to medium low and add the garlic.
- Stir the onions and garlic until the garlic is fragrant. Do not allow the garlic to burn as that will cause it to turn bitter.
- Add the greens, vinegar, and water.
- Turn the heat down to low, cover the pot, and simmer for one until the greens are tender. The cooking time will vary depending on the greens you have chosen. Collard greens may take up to an hour or more where chard could take only 45 minutes. Taste, and use your judgment as to how long to stew the greens.
Serve over wild rice or as a side dish with some iced green tea. Enjoy food while fighting inflammation.
Elwin is also the Founder of Complete Detox Academy, Taoist Health Academy, the Health Coaching Institute and High Energy Academy, as well as the author of 'the Easy Exhaustion Cure' and 'the 4 Step Safe and Effective Detox Action Plan'.
Elwin is highly Enthusiastic about empowering people to feel Energized, Joyful and Alive, Naturally and Sustainably, and has worked over 5 years with over 1000 clients towards this goal. Elwin is particularly passionate about working with clients who are highly committed to reaching high levels of Health, Energy and Wellbeing, by natural and sustainable means.
Elwin has always been interested in Health since childhood. With a mother who had cancer 4 times, and a father with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Elwin is determined to get to the Root Causes of what really creates Disease, and what it really takes to have Outstanding Health and Wellbeing. After suffering from Health Challenges all his life, Elwin became determined, in 2007, to 'Get his Energy back or Die Trying', and, with this level of Resolve, made rapid progress, after a few false starts, which led him naturally, organically, after many requests, to dedicate himself full time to helping others get the kind of Results that he had achieved.