Inflammation plays an important part in the body’s ability to heal itself and stay protected from illnesses. But too much inflammation can have serious consequences — including chronic diseases that become harmful for many people.
One of the benefits of the keto diet is its anti-inflammatory aspect. More and more people are turning to ketosis as a way to help manage and reduce symptoms from inflammation.
This article describes how you can use ketosis to reduce inflammation and what are the best anti-inflammatory keto foods.
How ketosis reduces inflammation
Being in ketosis means the body is using fat instead of sugar for energy. You all might know that sugar is inflammatory and its excess causes the body to:
- Produce high amounts of insulin
- Raise inflammation
- Trigger chronic disease
Eating a keto diet that is very low in sugar helps stop the streams of insulin from unregulated sugar levels that raise blood sugar and therefore create inflammation in the body.
Inflammation, pain, and chronic disease
Behind most chronic diseases, such as arthritis or diabetes, is a high amount of inflammation. This often comes with a lot of pain, too.
There are many factors involved in chronic inflammation, including a sedentary lifestyle, high stress levels, exposure to toxins or having a family history of inflammation. However, what we choose to eat every day plays a big part too.
Carbohydrates and inflammation
After we eat something with excess carbohydrates, our blood glucose levels remain higher than usual. Consuming many high-sugar foods can cause inflammation. And if the inflammation is chronic, it can lead to serious problems like insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes. In addition, these excess sugars get stored as fat in the body.
What to eat to reduce inflammation
Even though keto diet in general is anti-inflammatory, it's important to know what foods are best for reducing inflammation.
Here’s a breakdown of the best anti-inflammatory keto foods and also the foods to avoid.
- Healthy fats - egg yolks, MCT oil, coconut oil, olive oil, nuts, seeds, fatty fish like sardines, salmon, avocados, ghee butter, cocoa butter
- Omega-3 fats are important for fighting inflammation, you get them from eggs and fish or as a supplement
- Healthy meats - grass-fed, pastured-raised fatty versions bison, beef, organ meats, lamb)
- Non-starchy vegetables - dark leafy greens, such as spinach, chard, collards, kale, cauliflower, or broccoli.
Inflammatory foods - what to avoid
Stay away from foods that are high in sugar or processed ingredients:
- Processed foods - frozen meals, soy products, condiments
- High-glycemic foods - refined sugars, grains, fruits, and starchy vegetables
- Refined vegetable oils - corn, sunflower, and soybean oils
When inflammation is chronically activated in the body it leads to disease and painful symptoms. Ketosis and the ketogenic diet can act as a great natural, food-based way to promote an anti-inflammatory state in our bodies.