Exploring Anti-Inflammatory Eating: Part 2
Posted on Sep 18, 2014
Yesterday I highlighted some of the health benefits of eating mostly anti-inflammatory foods. I hope you’ve had a chance to try this way of eating for yourself! If you haven’t had a chance to start yet, this sample menu may be just what you need to come up with some ideas and get the ball rolling. Remember, when you commit to exploring this way of eating for just 2-3 weeks, you are giving your body a chance to begin the detoxification process, so that it can clean out the inflammation that has built up in your system. Once these few weeks are over, you can begin to add certain items back in, with a much clearer understanding of how these foods impact your body and your health. I’ll talk more about how to do this in a few weeks once your “detox” period is over.
One of the reasons why I love the anti-inflammatory way of eating so much is because it’s so easy and fulfilling. There’s no calorie-counting, no trying to count how many almonds you’ve eaten, no eating processed “diet snacks” that taste like cardboard, no fighting hunger until you’re “allowed” to eat again. Of course, if you’re interested in losing inches, this way of eating is also a great way to do it. If you’re eating whole, delicious foods, you’ll spend your days feeling satisfied. I keep my fridge full of fresh vegetables and high quality meats, so I’m never more than a few minutes away from a delicious meal. Of course, if you’re not a big fan of cooking, I’ve included some easy solutions you can grab on the go. I’ll also check back in tomorrow to see how things are going, and to give you a list of tips that might be helpful on your journey.
*Note: I’ll discuss this in more detail tomorrow, but your body is best able to digest and metabolize foods that are at body temperature or warmer, so most of the meals you see below will be at least lightly cooked. The following are suggestions from what I like to eat in my daily life. You can experiment mixing and matching different options to find what works best for you!
– 2-3 boiled, poached, scrambled or fried eggs, with lightly wilted greens or sautéed zucchini and bell peppers (if you’re in a hurry, many coffee shops and delis now stock freshly boiled eggs)
– Oatmeal or oat bran; you can add nuts to keep you full for longer, flaxseed meal (high in healthy anti-inflammatory oil and also high in fiber to help keep your digestion regular), and a bit of coconut milk for added sweetness and flavor
– Smoked salmon or other smoked fish; can be scrambled with eggs, zucchini and tomatoes for a tasty treat!
– Bacon or ham is okay once per week
– A small cup of hot coffee or tea is fine once a day. Try adding almond or coconut milk for a sweeter, creamier flavor. You can also mix in 1-2 tablespoons of almond meal or almond flour for an extra boost of protein and sustaining energy in your morning beverage
– Cooked vegetables of various colors, such as kale, spinach, chard, cabbage, zucchini, bell peppers, onions, broccoli, cauliflower, radishes, eggplant, etc. (AVOID: carrots, sugar snap peas, beets, corn and potatoes, which are all naturally high in sugar)
– Protein, such as beef, chicken, shrimp, pork, fish, turkey, tofu, quinoa or eggs
– Soup (clear broth with chicken or beef and vegetables, NOT cream-based)
– Sushi (limit to once per week, since it is cold and raw)
– Burritos or tacos with meat and rice, no cheese
– Salad (limit to once or twice per week, since they are cold and raw)
– Dry-roasted, lightly salted almonds or pumpkin seeds (perfect for when you’re craving something crunchy and salty!)
– Hummus or baba ghanoush with sliced bell peppers, cucumber or celery
– Beef jerky (just look for a brand that is low in sugars and other additives, or try making your own!)
– Rice cakes with butter, avocado, salt and pepper on top
– Fist-sized piece of fruit (no more than once per day)
– Almond butter mixed with cocoa powder and a bit of coconut milk for delicious, homemade dark chocolate
*Note: At first, you might find yourself craving sugar. This is because you’re still addicted! Don’t worry, so is most of the world. It may take a few days to adjust, but once you do, your taste buds will finish changing, and you’ll be able to taste the natural sweetness found in many foods. Even better, you’ll find that those pesky cravings will diminish and eventually disappear. You’ll no longer have to obey the commands of your Oreos!
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