"All disease begins in the gut." - Hippocrates
What we eat is perhaps the single most important thing we can do to in order to take charge of our health to reduce inflammation and therefore chronic disease. The following outlines a list of foods to eat and to avoid as part of an anti-inflammatory diet.
Green leaf lettuce
Nuts and Seeds
Oils, Vinegars, Herbs
Cod liver oil
All vinegars (without
In-season organic berries
Coconut yogurt (without added sugar)
Coconut milk (full fat, canned, without added sugar)
Meat, Poultry, and Fish
(≤4 ounces per day)-
Grass-Fed and Grass-Finished,
Pasture-Raised, and Wild-Caught
≥72% cacao dark chocolate
Champagne (≤6 ounces daily)
Red wine (≤6 ounces daily)
Rum, tequila, brandy, vodka, bourbon, whiskey or scotch (≤1 ounce daily)
Sugar- real or artificial
Nuts and Seeds
Almonds (unless the skin is removed)
Oils and Herbs
Yogurt (including Greek yogurt and frozen yogurt)
Whole grains, wheat
Corn and any corn product
Farm-raised meat, poultry, and fish, including grain, corn, or soybean-fed
Choose high quality meats and seafood, including grass-fed and grass-finished, pasture-raised, and wild-caught to avoid the grain or soybean feed given to farm-raised animals. The way the animals are raised is important because any toxins that animals are exposed to are stored in the fat and passed along to us as we eat the meat. Note that even high-quality protein choices are listed in moderation because excess protein is converted to sugar in the body, which contributes to inflammation.
Processed foods are perhaps the most important food group to avoid, as they are engineered to make us want to eat more. They are designed to trick our taste buds by delivering a sensation of salty, sweet, or fatty, which our brain is programmed to desire as a survival mechanism. However, the foods are devoid of the nutrition that our body needs, hence eating without the feeling of being full or satisfied.
You may notice that some foods on the "avoid this" list are what we normally think of as healthy. However, as an evolutionary survival mechanism, certain vegetables, fruits, grains, nuts, and seeds produce a toxic compound called lectins in order to avoid being eaten by animals and humans. Lectins are known to ignite the inflammatory cascade and cause damage at the cellular level. Gluten is in the family of lectins. Casein A1 is a lectin-like protein found in cow's milk that should be avoided for the same reason.