Anti-inflammatory diet meal plan: 26 healthful recipes

The anti-inflammatory diet can help relieve joint pain and reduce inflammation.

According to the Arthritis Foundation, certain foods can help tackle inflammation, strengthen bones, and boost the immune system.

Following a specific anti-inflammatory meal plan can help people make tasty, nutritious food while helping to keep their inflammation under control.

Read on for 26 anti-inflammatory recipes to try for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks.

Twenty-six anti-inflammatory recipes

The anti-inflammatory diet contains plenty of prebiotics, fiber, antioxidants, and omega-3s. This means a diet rich in vegetables, whole fruit, whole grains, legumes, and fatty fish.


Start off the day with the following nutritious anti-inflammatory recipes:

1. Oat porridge with berries

Oats with berries delivers high doses of prebiotics, antioxidants, and fiber.

Oats are high in a type of fiber called beta-glucans. Beta-glucans are an important prebiotic for the gut bacteria Bifidobacterium, which may help reduce diabetes-related inflammation and obesity.

Prebiotics help the healthy gut bacteria to flourish, which can help reduce inflammation.

Berries are high in antioxidants, and blueberries are especially high in anti-inflammatory polyphenols called anthocyanins.

Dietary tip: Traditional rolled and steel cut oats are higher in fiber than quick oats.


2. Buckwheat and chia seed porridge

Buckwheat groats are gluten-free and a great substitute for oats for people who are sensitive to gluten.

Adding chia seeds will boost the healthful omega-3 content of this breakfast choice.

Omega-3s help reduce inflammation in the body, and research shows that they can improve joint tenderness and stiffness in people with RA.

Chia seeds are also high in fiber and protein, which will keep people feeling full for longer.


3. Buckwheat berry pancakes

Buckwheat is also a good source of two key anti-inflammatory polyphenols called quercetin and rutin.

According to a 2016 study, quercetin is an antioxidant, while rutin has anti-inflammatory properties, which may help with arthritis.

Despite its name, buckwheat is not a grain. It is the seed of a fruit and is gluten-free. Buckwheat is especially popular in Japanese cuisine.

Many health food supermarkets and online stores sell buckwheat.


4. Scrambled eggs with turmeric

Eggs are an excellent source of protein, and the egg yolk contains vitamin D.

A 2016 review stated that vitamin D could limit the process of inflammation due to its effects on the immune system. The report also noted that people with RA had lower vitamin D levels than other people studied.

Add turmeric to scrambled eggs for an extra anti-inflammatory boost. Turmeric is rich in a compound called curcumin, which studies suggest can help manage oxidative and inflammatory conditions.

Choose this healthful vegetarian version of the Reuben for an anti-inflammatory boost.

Sauerkraut contains probiotics that are essential for a person’s gut bacteria. Probiotics may have an impact on arthritis-related inflammation by improving inflammation in the intestinal tract.

This grilled sandwich contains all the benefits of sauerkraut but contains less salt and calories than the Reuben. Adding hummus and avocado to replace the meat, provides protein and a smooth, creamy texture.


8. Spinach and feta frittata

Green leafy vegetables, such as spinach and broccoli, contain high levels of two polyphenols called quercetin and coenzyme Q10.

Coenzyme Q10 may reduce inflammation in some metabolic diseases, including RA, multiple sclerosis (MS), and diabetes.

Frittatas are quick and easy to make, and people can enjoy experimenting with a range of flavors. Having a side salad adds further benefits from vegetables.


9. Quinoa and citrus salad

A quinoa and citrus fruit salad is gluten-free and great for people on a vegan diet. Quinoa contains lots of protein and nutrients.

Add citrus fruits, such as lemon, lime, or grapefruit, to the salad for an antioxidant boost. Citrus fruits are full of vitamin C, which is an important antioxidant that can also help renew other antioxidants in the body.

Vitamin C also helps the body absorb iron from plant-based sources, such as spinach and quinoa.

Quinoa is easy to cook and store, so people can prepare it ahead of time and keep it in the fridge until needed.

Vegetarian chili is a versatile dish. With a variety of beans full of fermentable fibers, this chili looks after gut health.

Beans are also good sources of antioxidant vitamin C and are high in plant proteins.

Try experimenting with different beans and vegetables to find the preferred combination.


19. Salmon cakes

Salmon cakes are full of omega-3s, as well as colorful vegetables.

Bake these in the oven to lower their saturated fat content. Make the cakes ahead of time, and freeze immediately for future dinners.

To make salmon cakes gluten-free, use gluten-free breadcrumbs or almond meal to combine.



To incorporate healthful anti-inflammatory snacks into the diet, try the following recipes:

20. Power balls

Power balls are an easy snack to make. The sesame seeds are an excellent source of omega-3s. They are gluten-free and dairy-free and make great lunchtime or school snacks.


21. Chia seed pudding

Chia seed pudding is quick to prepare and makes a great, filling snack or dessert.

These puddings are incredibly versatile. Choose a favorite fruit to go with it. Use a dairy-free yogurt, such as coconut yogurt to make it vegan.


22. Grape and apple race cars

This is a fun recipe to make with kids. Involve them in cooking and get the creative juices flowing.

Grapes are also a good source of another anti-inflammatory polyphenol called anthocyanins. Red grapes are a great source of resveratrol, which may help reduce inflammation.

Apples are high in fiber, which also has anti-inflammatory properties.


23. Turmeric nachos

Making nachos at home can be a healthier alternative than store-bought options. These nachos are high in turmeric, which can reduce inflammation.

These nachos contain almond meal so are also a good source of antioxidant vitamin E.


24. Matcha smoothie bowl

Matcha is a green tea powder. Many people use it to make tea, lattes, or tasty smoothie bowls.

Like other green teas and black tea, matcha is high in a polyphenol called epigallocatechin (EGCG). These compounds provide anti-inflammatory benefits.

Matcha is available through most tea specialists, Asian grocers, or online.


25. Trail mix

It is easy to make trail mix at home by mixing nuts and seeds.

Nuts and seeds are high in omega-3, protein, and healthful fats.

Try adding goji berries, which are high in vitamin C.


26. Yogurt

A small pot of yogurt or probiotic delivers beneficial bacteria to the gut.

A healthy gut microbiome is essential to reduce leaky gut and inflammation.


An anti-inflammatory diet is high in plant foods, such as vegetables, legumes, and fruit.

Fermented products, such as yogurt and sauerkraut, are also important, as are fatty fish and seafood.

Although it is great to know what ingredients in food provide healthful benefits, it is essential to include a wide variety of whole food in the diet.

Reduce foods with added sugars, fats, and salts. This will help restore balance in the gut and reduce inflammation.

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