Is the Anti-Inflammatory Diet the Secret to Longevity?
The anti-inflammatory diet aims to provide the best environment within your body for peak physical wellness.
It’s based on the concept that when we eat inflammatory foods, it creates inflammation in the body, which leads to increased stress levels, a lowered immune function and an increased risk for developing chronic diseases. When we switch to an anti-inflammatory diet however, we reduce all of those risks and can improve our physical health as well as general livelihood.
Dr. Andrew Weil was a pioneer in developing a specific program to follow in a successful anti-inflammatory diet. There are actually a lot of different elements that can contribute to inflammation in the body in addition to food, including stress, pollution, etc.
Taking steps to reduce inflammation as much as possible can have huge positive changes on the body. When we live in a chronic state of inflammation, it can encourage everything from skin troubles and insomnia, to heart disease, cancer, and Alzheimer’s disease.
When we rid the diet of inflammatory foods and substitute them with anti-inflammatory foods, we can increase our energy levels, making it easier to get the physical activity that we need, regulate the digestive system and enhance the body’s natural ability to flush out toxins.
The anti-inflammatory diet incorporates healthy fats, fish, and plenty of fruits and vegetables. It severely limits other animal fats, and things like sugar and white flower are out as they are highly agitating to the body. How much you eat on the diet will depend based on your body type and activity levels, but it should be plenty of food to keep you feeling satiated.
The diet suggests that 40 to 50 percent of your calories come from carbs, 30 percent from healthy fats, and 20 to 30 percent from protein sources. Ideally, you should be able to get some of each at every meal to keep you feeling fuller longer.
It is possible to lose weight while following the anti-inflammatory diet even though weight loss is not the main goal. Most of the food options on the diet are similar to the Mediterranean diet, which has been shown to promote weight loss and heart health. Some studies show that inflammation itself can lead to the storage of fat within the body no matter what else you’re doing to it, so following this logic, if you stop pumping your body with inflammatory foods, you may automatically start shedding some excess weight.
Inflammation is also a common thread in heart disease. Certainly by cutting out saturated fats from animal products and switching to heart-healthy fats you will help keep your cholesterol levels and blood pressure in check.
The anti-inflammatory diet is also high in fiber which has been proven to be good for heart health. There are no health risks associated with following the anti-inflammatory diet, and appropriate foods can be found for recipes at home as well as dining out.