The Anti-Inflammatory Diet is not a diet in the popular sense – it is not intended as a weight-loss program (although people can and do lose weight on it), nor is it an eating plan to stay on for a limited period of time.
Chronic inflammation is becoming known as the root cause of many serious illnesses including heart disease, many cancers, and Alzheimer’s disease. When inflammation persists or serves no purpose, it can damage the body and cause illness. Stress, lack of exercise, genetic predisposition, and exposure to toxins (like secondhand tobacco smoke) can all contribute to such chronic inflammation, but dietary choices play a big role as well.
Learning how specific foods influence the inflammatory process is the best strategy for containing it and reducing long-term disease risks.
Tips for Dieting:
- Make sure you eat a variety of foods
- Include as much fresh food as possible and minimize your consumption of processed foods
- JUST SAY NO to fast food
- Most adults need to consume between 2,000 and 3,000 calories a day.
- Women and smaller/less active people need fewer calories
- If you are eating the appropriate number of calories for your level of activity, your weight should not fluctuate greatly.
- The distribution of calories
- 40 to 50 percent from carbohydrates
- 30 percent from fat
- 20 to 30 percent from protein
- Try to include carbohydrates, fat, and protein at each meal.
- The majority of this should be in the form of less-refined, less-processed foods with a low glycemic load.
- Reduce your consumption of foods made with sugar, especially bread and most packaged snack foods (including chips and pretzels).
- Eat more whole grains such as brown rice and wheat
- Avoid products made with high fructose corn syrup
- Reduce your intake of saturated fat. These are contained in
- high-fat cheese
- unskinned chicken
- Use extra-virgin olive oil as a main cooking oil.
- For omega-3 fatty acids, eat:
- salmon, herring, and black cod
- omega-3 fortified eggs
- hemp seeds and flaxseeds
- Decrease your consumption of animal protein except for fish and high quality natural cheese and yogurt.
- Eat more vegetable protein, especially from beans in general and soybeans in particular.
- Become familiar with the range of whole-soy foods available and find ones you like.
- Try to eat 40 grams of fiber a day.
- Fruit, especially berries
- vegetables (especially beans)
- whole grains
Vitamins and Minerals
In addition, consider supplementing your diet with the following antioxidant cocktail:
- Vitamin C, 200 milligrams a day.
- Vitamin E, 400 IU of natural mixed tocopherols
- Selenium, 200 micrograms of an organic (yeast-bound) form.
- Mixed carotenoids, 10,000-15,000 IU daily.
- Women should take supplemental calcium, preferably as calcium citrate, 500-700 milligrams a day, depending on their dietary intake of this mineral
- Drink pure water, or drinks that are mostly water (tea, very diluted fruit juice, sparkling water with lemon) throughout the day.