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to: Caroline Schaefer

Unhealthy eating habits can lead to chronic inflammation. Anti-inflammatory foods can help: Here’s how.

Frankfurt – be it rheumatic diseases, arthritis, diabetes, arthritis, multiple sclerosis or neurodermatitis – no matter how different the diseases are, they are often based on inflammatory reactions in the body. “Inflammatory processes play a role in an incredible number of diseases,” nutrition expert Matthias Riedel explained in the NDR report.

Basically, inflammation is an important defensive reaction to tissue damage. The goal is to remove the harmful effect. Inflammation usually appears as redness of the skin, warmth in the inflamed area, and swelling. This is often accompanied by pain, and function is usually restricted. On the other hand, inflammation in the body initially goes unnoticed and is expressed, for example, by fever, general malaise and pain.

Prevent infections in the body: Avoid unhealthy foods

If there is long-term irritation of certain parts of the body, then chronic inflammatory diseases can develop. Usually they are noticeable by symptoms of relapse, such as arthritis or rheumatism. Many factors work together to create and maintain inflammatory processes, including lack of sleep, exercise, smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, stress, and an unhealthy diet.

Fruits and vegetables are key to a healthy anti-inflammatory diet. © Fabian Sommer / dpa

Too greasy, too much sugar, too few nutrients and too many empty calories: Due to the oversupply of food in Western countries today, many people tend to lead unhealthy lifestyles. Rheumatologist Anne Fleck reports NDR that “sweets, wheat products, and excessive consumption of meat – especially pork, which contains a large number of pro-inflammatory substances” promote inflammation in the body. The lack of anti-inflammatory foods in the diet also plays an important role.

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Chronic infections: Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables is part of a healthy diet

To avoid chronic infections, it is essential to eat a healthy, balanced diet rich in vitamins and minerals. Basically, a healthy lifestyle begins with adequate fluids in the form of water or unsweetened tea. The German Dietetic Association recommends at least 1.5 liters per day. More when moving or in summer temperatures.

Fruits and vegetables should also make up important parts of the diet. The health insurance company AOK recommends at least three handfuls of raw or cooked vegetables per day. Two handfuls of low-sugar fruit are recommended. A special anti-inflammatory effect is attributed to these types of fruits and vegetables:

  • Vegetables, leeks and onions: Many vitamins (A, B, C, E) and a high amount of minerals such as sodium, potassium, magnesium, calcium and phosphorous
  • Broccoli: It supplies phytochemicals such as glucosinolates
  • Red pepper: Lots of vitamin C and lots of fiber
  • Cherry and red berries: Lots of Vitamin C and Phytochemicals such as anthocyanins
  • spinach: Rich in vitamins (C, E) and minerals such as beta-carotene, zinc and selenium

Nutrition: Nuts, oils and spices have anti-inflammatory effects

Nuts, vegetable oils and spices also have an anti-inflammatory effect. Polyunsaturated fatty acids such as omega-3 strengthen the immune system and allow to calm inflammatory processes in the body. Turmeric, ginger, and cayenne pepper are also said to have an anti-inflammatory effect.

It is not necessary for an anti-inflammatory diet to eat only certain foods. As a general rule, it is sufficient to incorporate healthy foods such as fruits and vegetables into your eating plan and reduce inflammatory foods such as alcohol, meat or sweets. Anyone who already suffers from chronic inflammation such as rheumatism, arthritis, and the like should constantly avoid inflammatory foods. This also includes heavily processed products, such as ready meals, sausages, cheese, and foods that contain gluten in particular.

High consumption of animal products can not only lead to chronic inflammation in the body, but also to it Increased risk of depression.

“A predominantly vegetarian and vegan diet ensures an adequate supply of anti-inflammatory substances,” the Independent Health Advice Association wrote. “The more diverse and varied the choice of food, the better.” Reducing stress, adequate sleep and adequate exercise in daily life is also crucial. (cheese)