Acute inflammation is a process that happens normally and can facilitate healing after infection or injury. The complex process ultimately results in common symptoms of pain such as heat, swelling, and redness.
However, if inflammation persists for an extended amount of time, it becomes chronic, and chronic inflammation contributes to the physiological processes associated with many diseases.
Nutrition plays an important role in the prevention of chronic inflammatory diseases. For example, research has shown found that diets high in trans fat and saturated fat are pro-inflammatory. And on the other hand, a diet high in monounsaturated fats can help reduce inflammation.
1. Broccoli is one of the best anti-inflammatory foods
Broccoli is one of the richest dietary sources of sulforaphane, a phytochemical with powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
Studies have shown that sulforaphane activates a protein known as Nrf2, which helps to protect arteries from inflammation that can lead to atherosclerosis. Atherosclerosis is a chronic inflammatory disease which results in a build-up of plaque up inside the arteries, and can lead to angina, heart attack or stroke.
What to do: For optimum antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effect, steam broccoli lightly as boiling and other cooking methods can destroy a lot of the nutrients in broccoli. Steaming can also help to get rid of pesticide residue if your broccoli is not organically grown.