Anti-inflammatory nutrition: what foods help against osteoarthritis, rheumatism, diabetes and the like

  • Caroline Schaefer

    OfCaroline Schaefer

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Unhealthy eating habits can trigger chronic inflammation. Anti-Inflammatory Foods Can Help: What You Should Know.

Frankfurt – Whether rheumatism, osteoarthritis, 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,” nutritionist Matthias Riedl explained to NDR.

Basically, inflammation is considered an important defense reaction against tissue damage. The goal is to remove the harmful influence. Inflammation usually manifests as reddened skin, warmth in the inflamed area, and swelling. This is often accompanied by pain and function is often restricted. Inflammation in the body, on the other hand, initially goes unnoticed and expresses itself, for example, with fever, malaise and pain.

If there is prolonged irritation of certain parts of the body, chronic inflammatory diseases can develop. These are usually noticed through recurring symptoms, such as arthritis or rheumatism. Many factors work together to create and maintain inflammatory processes, including lack of sleep and exercise, smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, stress, and an unhealthy diet.

Prevent inflammation in the body – you should specifically avoid unhealthy foods

Too much fat, too much sugar, not enough nutrients, and too many empty calories: Due to the oversupply of food in Western countries today, many people tend to lead unhealthy lifestyles. “Sweets, wheat products, and excessive consumption of meat, especially pork, which contains a lot of pro-inflammatory substances,” promote inflammation in the body, rheumatologist Anne Fleck told NDR. The lack of anti-inflammatory foods in the diet also plays a crucial role.

Fruits and vegetables are key to a healthy, anti-inflammatory diet. (symbol photo)

© imago-images

To avoid chronic inflammation, a healthy and balanced diet rich in vitamins and minerals is essential. Basically, a healthy lifestyle starts with enough fluids in the form of water or unsweetened tea. The German Nutrition Society recommends at least 1.5 liters a day. More on the move or in summer temperatures.

Yuck, mold! You can still eat these foods

Moldy food in a compost
Every day several tons of food are thrown away in Germany, partly due to mold. But that doesn’t always have to be the case. © Astrid Gast/Imago
Warning sign with exclamation point: caution signs beware of mold in multigrain bread.
Mold spreads quickly, especially in warm temperatures and when food is not stored properly. However, it’s not always directly a reason to shoot! © Ralph Peters/Image
Bread on the shelf in a bakery

Bread is one of those foods that should be thrown out immediately if a small spot of mold appears. Spores easily penetrate through fabric. © F. Anthea Schaap/Imago

Homemade strawberry jam in a mason jar.  Next to him are three fresh sliced ​​strawberries on the table.
Jam or marmalade that shows a layer of mold does not necessarily have to go. Prerequisite: they contain more than 50 percent sugar or sugar substitutes. Then just remove the mold generously. © Eva Gruendemann / Image
cream cheese on a bun
Cream cheese contains a lot of moisture, so mold has a perfect breeding ground. Mold? Away with it!
milk and cheese products
Hard cheese, on the other hand, is a completely different matter. Mold cannot be spread on Parmesan cheese. Simply cut off the affected piece and enjoy the rest. Blue cheeses like gorgonzola are covered in a noble edible mold. © Philipp Brandstädter/dpa/symbol picture
Moldy nuts are of particular concern due to the toxin they contain. So order them right away. © Markus Scholz/dpa
various spices
By the way, the same substance is also found in moldy pepper. He also belongs to the garbage. © Bassi/Imago
Air-dried meat products such as salami and Serrano ham
You can treat air-dried meat products like salami and prosciutto the same way you treat Parmesan cheese: generously cut off any moldy areas and enjoy the rest. © Ingrid Balabanova/Imago
Salami hanging in a maturing room (symbol photo)
Of course, you can eat noble mold salami whole. Here you want the mold. © Patrick Pleul/dpa
Soft, fleshy and juicy fruits and vegetables, such as peaches or tomatoes, are quickly attacked and penetrated by mold. So when you see a place, sadly you have to say goodbye to the finesse. © Mark1987 / Imago Images

Chronic inflammation: vegetables and fruits are part of a healthy diet

Fruits and vegetables should also be an important part of the diet. The AOK Health Insurance Company 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 this type of fruit and vegetables:

  • Leek and onion vegetables: many vitamins (A, B, C, E) and high amount of minerals such as sodium, potassium, magnesium, calcium and phosphorus
  • Broccoli: supplies phytochemicals such as glucosinolates
  • Peppers: lots of vitamin C and lots of fiber
  • Cherries and red fruits: lots of vitamin C and phytochemicals such as anthocyanins
  • Spinach: rich in vitamins (C, E) and minerals such as beta-carotene, zinc and selenium

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

A high consumption of animal products can not only lead to chronic inflammation in the body, but also increase the risk of depression.

Eat healthy: nuts, oils and spices have anti-inflammatory effects

It is not crucial to an anti-inflammatory diet to eat only certain foods. As a general rule, it is enough to incorporate healthy foods such as fruits and vegetables into the eating plan and reduce pro-inflammatory foods such as alcohol, meat or sweets. Anyone who already suffers from chronic inflammation, such as rheumatism, osteoarthritis and the like, should constantly avoid pro-inflammatory foods. This also includes highly processed products, such as ready meals, cold meats, cheeses and foods that contain especially gluten.

“A predominantly vegetarian and plant-based diet ensures an adequate supply of anti-inflammatory substances,” the Association for Independent Health Council wrote. “The more colorful and varied the food selection, the better.” Reducing stress, getting enough sleep, and getting enough exercise in daily life are also crucial. (Karolin Schaefer)

List of rubrics: © imago-images

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