Top Anti-Inflammatory Foods, Part 1

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Top Anti-Inflammatory Foods, Part 1. Photo credit: Joanna Kosinska, Unsplash.com

More and more research each day is pointing to the benefit of eating anti-inflammatory foods for a healthier life. Sadly, the Standard American Diet, (S.A.D.) which consists of processed foods, fried foods, red meats, and foods high in sugar, trans fats, and salt, is very pro-inflammation. Add to that the fact that our bodies are bombarded daily by toxins that can contribute to inflammation as well, from the air we breathe, to the water we drink, and even on the fresh foods we eat in the form of pesticides and glyphosate. So we need to do all we can to help detox and protect our bodies.

And since inflammation has been linked to a host of diseases from diabetes and heart disease to cancer and dementia/Alzheimers, we could all stand to eat healthier. If you read my last post, you saw how diet has been directly linked to mental health. When you’re fueling your body with low-grade fuel (ie: S.A.D diet) there’s no way it’s going to be able to function properly over the long haul. So it’s really important to eat as many anti-inflammatory foods as possible, at every meal, every day.

Most of the top anti-inflammatory foods are plant-based foods, and the recommended daily intake of fruits and veggies is nine half-cup servings a day. That’s 4.5 cups of veggies and fruits a day, every day. And if you can eat more than that, and eat organic, all the better. Guess what? When you’re loading up on 4.5 cups or more of high-fiber, delicious veggies, and fruits a day, along with some healthy fats and oils, you will feel satiated and full. You won’t have much room left in your belly to snack on processed, fried, chemical-laden junk foods. Wahoo!

So what are the top anti-inflammatory foods, and what can they do for you? Lately, many doctors and universities have been putting together top anti-inflammatory foods lists. And I took a look at many of these lists, all of which differ somewhat. However, 12 foods were among the top on all lists. So in Part 1 of this two-part article, we’ll find out the health benefits of the top six anti-inflammatory foods.

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Diet, Inflammation, and Mental Health

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DIET, INFLAMMATION, AND MENTAL HEALTH, Angelos Michalopoulos, Unsplash

Is there a link between diet, inflammation, and mental health? You might not have given it much thought before, so you might be surprised by what you’ll learn here. As you likely know, mental health issues have a big impact on our society. In fact, their impact may be larger than any other chronic disease, including heart disease, diabetes, cancer, dementia, and autoimmune diseases.

There are so many factors involved in complex conditions like mental health issues. Interestingly, science is only recently starting to unravel one of these factors – chronic inflammation as it relates to diet.

And the diet, inflammation, and mental health trifecta can be a hard-to-break vicious cycle. Poor diet leads to inflammation, which can lead to mental health issues, which can lead to making poor diet and lifestyle choices, and on and on it goes…Let’s take a deeper look to see what seems to be going on with diet, inflammation and mental health.

First, let’s look at the links between chronic inflammation and mental health (there are a few). Then, we’ll take a look at new research into natural approaches – things like foods, nutrients, and lifestyle changes – and how these factors contribute to increased mental wellness.

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Overnight Oatmeal + Health Benefits of Oats

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Overnight Oatmeal photo by Deryn Macey, Unsplash.

Overnight Oatmeal is the perfect quick-n-easy, delicious, nutritious meal to serve a busy family. It can be made the night before then heated up in 10-15 minutes the next morning.

Plus the nourishing ingredients in this hearty breakfast will leave kids and adults alike with enough brain-food to power through the day.

Oats are a powerhouse of nutrition and a staple in our pantry and breakfast table. They are naturally gluten-free but can become cross-contaminated with wheat and gluten in the processing. So if you are Celiac or on a strict gluten-free diet, you’ll need to be sure to buy Gluten-Free Oats. I personally love Bob’s Redmill Gluten-free oats, which you can find at any natural food store. Bob’s Redmill owns and operates a gluten-free mill and processing facility and ensures no gluten contamination.

In case you’re thinkning “Overnight Oats are just carbs” and you’re trying to do a low-carb thing… think again. The health benefits of oats are impressive. Plus complex carbohydrates are a very important part of every meal and need not be avoided.
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Health Benefits of Parsley + Chimichurri Recipe

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Health Benefits of Parsley, Chimichurri Recipe

The health benefits of parsley far outweigh its typical lowly place as a garnish on a plate in American restaurants. While Americans consume a lot of parsley, (third only to salt and pepper as the most consumed spice), it’s doubtful many Westerners know about the health benefits.

However, people in the Middle East are well aware of the health benefits of parsley and eat it daily, by the cup full. In fact, almost every nation in the Middle East and around the Mediterranean has its own version of tabouli using equal parts parsley and bulgur wheat. And some researchers think it could be the spices, like parsley, that makes the Mediterranean diet so healthy.

So what are the health benefits of parsley? For starters, parsley contains enormous amounts of apigenin, an antioxidant enhancer that helps other antioxidants work better.(1)

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