Vale Health Clinic

How Does our Diet Affect Pain

Diet, Inflammation & Pain

If you were asked to give a list of things that causes you pain you would probably list a trip or fall. Or perhaps overdoing it at the gym or any sport related injury. Maybe even sitting for long hours in front of the computer and so on. But how many of us think of our diet when we consider the factors that can lead to pain? Are you aware that pain is most often due to inflammation in the body?

The process of inflammation and tissue healing is one that involves certain chemicals to be present in order for it to take place. There are some chemicals that are known as ‘anti-inflammatory’ (which lessen the inflammatory response and therefore reduce pain). On the other hand, there are chemicals that are ‘pro-inflammatory’ (which aggravate the inflammation process).

Which food is good for us?

The list is endless, but here are some examples of good food:

  • Fruits, nuts and Vegetablesare full of vitamins and minerals as well as fiber, phytochemicals and antioxidants. They act as anti-inflammatory foods and help your body deal with inflammation.
  • Fresh Fish and good quality fresh meats are full of proteins that help cope with inflammation. Oily fish especially also contains omega-3 fatty acids that help reduce the inflammatory process. Other sources of Omega-3 fatty acidscan be found in eggs, extra virgin olive oil, avocados, flax and pumpkin seeds, grape-seed oil and walnut oil.
  • It is not all boring! Moderate consumption (a glass a day) of red wine has also been shown to have an anti-inflammatory effect, as well as dark chocolate (80% and above).
  • Spice-up your life! Ginger, turmeric, garlic, oregano, marjoram and many other spices have anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Water is also very important for the healing process as well, so make sure you’re well hydrated.

Which foods should we avoid?

Processed foods, Junk Food, Packaged foods (containing refined sugars and trans fats) and deep fried foods are full of pro-inflammatory chemicals. Excessive consumption of them will make any inflammatory reaction in your body go wild!. You may find yourself suffering more than necessary if your diet is packed with these foodstuffs.

If you would like some more nutritional advise please do not hesitate to ask. One of us at Vale Health Clinic will be happy to help.


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