Swelling in the joints can be caused by a number of issues, but luckily there are some delicious and healthy foods that fight swelling to combat the issue in a natural way. Arthritis isn’t always the case when it comes to swollen joints. It can be caused by stress, a poor diet full of fast food and salt, improper fluid balance in the body, lack of rest, adrenal fatigue, hormone imbalance or inflammation from exercise. Be sure to fill your diet with anti-inflammatory foods that are rich in healthy fats, vitamins, minerals and electrolytes such as potassium. Eating these foods that fight swelling in your joints isn't too tough, and they are fantastic for your brain, metabolism and your heart, as a bonus. Did I mention they’re delicious too?
Fish is absolutely one of the best anti-inflammatory foods to eat, and one of the best foods that fight swelling. Rich in omega 3 fatty acids that fight swelling, inflammation of the skin and heart, along with your joints, fish is amazing for your brain and body. Outside of its body benefits, it also helps contribute to a better mood, more energy and most people find it the easiest animal protein to digest. It should be your top choice of all animal proteins, so long as you choose wild caught. Fish is much more alkaline to your body than all other animal proteins, due to its healthy fat composition. You should also rotate your fish varieties to avoid an allergen, or toxicity to mercury.
Greens are another one of the top anti-inflammatory foods to eat. Greens aren’t only rich in vitamins and minerals to fight swelling, but also rich in chlorophyll. Chlorophyll is the hue that gives plants their green color, and it’s the most alkaline nutrient in the world. It decreases inflammation, along with almost most all other negative health issues. Chlorophyll is found in sea veggies, leafy greens and green vegetables in abundance. Leafy greens are powerhouses of nutrition due to their high iron content, high fiber content, Vitamin A, C and K content, but mostly due to their chlorophyll content. Be sure to choose a variety, such as romaine, spinach, chard, dandelion, kale, arugula, romaine, turnip, collards and all lettuces.
Berries are a top fruit to choose to prevent inflammation. They’re rich in antioxidants and potassium, along with Vitamin C, which all help to prevent swelling in the joints. They’re also low in sugar, so they’re friendly to your glycemic index. Choose any variety of berries that you like.
Cherries are a top food known to decrease arthritis symptoms, with cherry juice being recommended by many doctors for those suffering with joint pain or inflammation. Cherries are rich in antioxidants that lower inflammation to fight swelling, and they even contain melatonin to help you sleep! Cherries in their whole form are a better source of anti-inflammatory agents than the juice, and both sour and sweet cherries count. Just be sure to keep them to one cup per day since they are higher in sugar.
Another fruit that is wonderful for preventing inflammation in your joints to decrease swelling is pineapple. Pineapple is rich in both potassium and Vitamin C, and it’s also a powerhouse of enzymes to help with digestion, along with a host of other processes that take place in your body. Pineapple is great in a smoothie and it’s fantastic to have right after you exercise. As a bonus, it also helps to decrease belly bloat!
6. Olive Oil
If you’re going to use any type of dressing on a salad, make it olive oil, or hemp oil as another alternative. Olive oil is fantastic for your joints and to treat inflammation. It is rich in monounsaturated fats, along with polyunsaturated fats, which both fight swelling and inflammation. Just keep your olive oil to 1-2 tablespoons on a salad since it’s very calorie dense and it's easy to go overboard. Also, don’t cook with olive oil, since its fats decrease at high heat. It’s better to choose coconut oil to cook with, since its healthy fats hold their structure perfectly in high heat.
Celery is another top food to fight inflammation. It contains the perfect amount of both sodium and potassium, and it also has a large amount of water, Vitamin K and Vitamin C. It helps decrease blood pressure as a bonus, and it helps fight bloating. Have some celery in your salad, a smoothie or just nosh on it raw when you’re stressed. Its nutrient complex is perfect for taming frayed nerves and swollen joints.
Cucumbers are another top veggie to eat if your joints are inflamed and swollen. Cucumber is rich in water, with 94% water content to be exact. It also has a large amount of potassium, Vitamin C and silica. Silica is the nutrient to consume when your hair, skin and nails need some help. It helps strengthen collagen in the joints, hair and skin, which helps improve elasticity in all. Just be sure if you’re eating the skins to choose organic, since conventional cucumber skins are high in pesticides.
This delicious, savory herb used for cooking is also one of the best anti-inflammatory foods you can choose. Basil, like all herbs, is rich in phytochemicals that aid in preventing and treating inflammation. Basil stands out as it has some of the biggest benefits when it comes to treating inflammation. It’s a fantastic anti-viral and anti-fungal herb as well. Chop some fresh basil up in a salad, or even throw some in your smoothie. It’s got a delicious taste that you’ll absolutely love!
Other favorites I have to reduce swelling and inflammation are parsley, ginger root, cilantro, spirulina, lemons and almonds. Do you have any favorite foods to reduce swelling in your joints, or help with swelling after exercise?