by: Isa Herrera and The Renew PT Team
Do you suffer from chronic pain? Are you tired of taking prescription medications? Do you struggle to find a successful diet in a world of processed food and secret ingredients? Are you curious about the new trend of “clean eating”? If you have answered yes to these questions, you may be a good candidate for an anti-inflammatory diet.
Author and doctor, Vijay Vad, MD, describes the significance of an anti-inflammatory diet in his book, Stop Pain. He explains that research has shown the role of nutrition in inflammation. Many of the foods we eat are full of additives, preservatives, and trans-fats. This, in turn, causes the food to have a “pro-inflammatory” effect by promoting free radical formation. Free radicals, or unstable molecules, can be detrimental to our bodies in many ways, such as decreasing flexibility of cartilage, impairing the ability of arteries to resist plaque build-up and preventing airways from staying open.
Having personally struggled with pain, inflammation, severe allergies, endless doctor visits and prescription medications, I finally committed to a diet to manage my symptoms. In just over 30 days, I am nearly prescription free, my aches and pains are decreased, and my allergies have subsided by 90%. My diet was designed to address my specific symptoms with the help of an allergist and immunologist. However, there are a few general recommendations that Doctor Vad offers in his book that I would like to share with you that I, too, have found particularly helpful in my own journey.
What supplements do you need?
• Omega 3 – Cannot be produced within body; anti-inflammatory, Dosage: Fish oil (EPA/DHA) – 2000mg
• Ginger/Tumeric – Reduce pain, inflammation and nausea, Dosage: 510mg
• Glucosamine/Chondroitin – Cartilage protection and anti-inflammatory, Dosage: 1500mg/2000mg
• Flavanoids – Protect vitamin C, antioxidant, Dosage/Source: Grape seed extract 500-1000mg
• Boswellia – Anti-inflammatory, antiarthritic, Dosage: 200mg
• Bromelian – Bioactive ingredient in pineapple, anti-inflammatory, relief for pain, numbness, tingling, aching, digestive aid, Dosage/Source: 400 – 1500mg with 400IU of Vitamin E
• Resveratrol – Antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, improves heart health, Dosage: 250mg
• MSM – Delivers sulfur to the body, maintain structure of connective tissue, improves joint health, Dosage: 1000-2000mg with Vitamin C, 1000mg
• Vitamin D3*** – Maintenance of organ systems, regulate calcium and phosphorus, anti-inflammatory, pain relief, Dosage: 2000-400IU ***See the Renew PT blog on Vitamin D3 to learn more:
The above foods and supplements are recommendations taken from Stop Pain by Vijay Vad, MD. Please consult your primary care physician before making changes to your diet. These anti-inflammatory food groups and supplements can be crucial as an adjunct to physical therapy for anyone experiencing chronic pain and inflammation. At Renew Physical Therapy, we see patients suffering from pain and inflammation of the joints and muscles of the hips, low back, and pelvic floor. Many of our patients have committed to diets free of processed, fatty foods and have found it helpful in addition to their therapy regime. Please contact Renew Physical Therapy to schedule your appointment to find your pain relief today!
Here is one of my favorite recipe’s to make for the work week for lunch. I make extra and freeze them so I don’t have to worry about cooking lunch. I just prepare different sides!
Watercress Turkey Bites
(Adapted from The Ultimate Candida Diet Recipe Guide – Lisa Richards)
• ½ cup of chopped Vidalia onion (or any onion of your preference)
• Salt and Pepper to taste
• 1 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
• 1 lb Ground Turkey (grass fed, antibiotic free)
• 1 cup of Watercress (I prefer spinach or kale)
• ½ tsp. curry powder (I prefer minced garlic or garlic salt)
• Preheat oven to 350 degrees
• In skillet, sauté onion with a little salt in oil over low-medium heat for 8-10 minutes
• Place turkey in bowel and gently break apart. Add onion and curry powder (or you favorite seasoning), salt and pepper, and massage to combine
• Place watercress (or kale/spinach) into same skillet and cook briefly. Add into turkey mixture
• Make into patties and place on baking sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes, until cooked through. I prefer to cook for 15 minutes for a little crunch.
• I serve over a bed of sautéed spinach, with a side of cauliflower mashed potatoes, or with a side salad of cucumber, avocado, and tomato.
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