If you’ve ever sprained your ankle only to find it swell up like a balloon, you’ve witnessed inflammation firsthand. It’s a natural immune response whereby the tissue in your body reacts to a harmful stimuli such as an infection or an injury. It’s a protective response meant to eliminate the initial cause of harm. In the case of an ankle sprain, it’s a temporary, targeted form of inflammation.
While most of us think about food in terms of how it can affect our weight and physical performance, it goes well beyond that.
How exactly does food affect inflammation?
When you consistently eat a poor diet rich in sugary, starchy foods, though, your body is systematically being affected by inflammation. This increases the risk of degenerative disease, chronic pain, joint pain, fatigue, and damage to blood vessels.
The good news is there’s plenty that can be done to control inflammation. The key is to be strategic about the foods you eat, focusing on a diet rich in anti-inflammatory foods and drinking water (or tea) throughout the day. Here’s a look at the inflammation-fighting foods you should always have around.