Inflammation can happen all over your body — gums included! What many physicians and dentists have begun to find is that anti-inflammatory solutions may already be in your kitchen. Consuming anti-inflammatory foods as part of a regular, well-balanced diet can reduce your risk and fight inflammation before it even starts.
Anti-inflammatory foods that support your health and smile
Ginger is known as a healing herb with anti-inflammatory properties that promote healthy tissue in the mouth. It’s a great ingredient to incorporate into soups and teas for gum disease prevention.
Olive oil is a natural oil that comes from olives with a very low amount of saturated fat. The main fatty acid in olive oil is a monounsaturated fat called oleic acid. Some studies have found that oleic acid reduces inflammation and has benefits on genes linked to cancer. The main anti-inflammatory properties come from antioxidants, which have been shown to work similarly to ibuprofen as an anti-inflammatory.
Inflammation is the body’s way of protecting itself from injury, but long-term inflammation can lead to many health problems. The unsaturated fats and abundance of antioxidants in nuts like almonds, walnuts and pecans help reduce inflammation, especially for people with diabetes and kidney disease.
Dark leafy greens
High in fiber, dark leafy greens can help fight inflammation while also keeping your mouth clean. All that fiber requires some major chewing to break down, producing extra saliva that washes away harmful acids.
Strawberries, blueberries and cherries are high in polyphenols and natural antioxidants. Polyphenols are protective, anti-inflammatory compounds found in plants that are great for supporting healthy gum tissue.
One of the most common symptoms and early indicators of gum disease is inflammation in the mouth.
Ways to start incorporating anti-inflammatory foods
Combine a mix of nuts and dark chocolate for a snack that's full of healthy fats, antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties.
An easy and delicious way to add anti-inflammatory fruits, leafy greens and calcium-rich milk or yogurt to your diet is by adding them all together in a blender. Experiment with frozen versus raw ingredients to control the thickness of your smoothie based on preference.
The beautiful thing about soup is that you can throw almost anything into a pot and create something delicious. Leafy greens, mixed vegetables, olive oil — you name it. For maximum anti-inflammatory benefits, try your hand at making a soup with ginger at the forefront. For example, a chicken, garlic and ginger soup or a carrot-ginger soup.
You don't need to make a sudden switch to get the benefits of anti-inflammatory foods. An easy way to begin is by trying a new recipe featuring some of these antioxidant powerhouses. If you're dealing with inflammation, make sure to consult with your physician or dentist to determine the best course of treatment.
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