The Best Anti-Inflammatory Keto Foods
10 keto friendly foods that can help you reduce inflammation...
By its nature the keto diet is anti-inflammatory.
By removing highly processed carbs, seed oils and sugar from your diet, you are already removing several of the foods that cause inflammation in your body.
So, if you follow a low carb or keto real foods diet, keep it up! Your chronic inflammation levels are most likely significant less than that of a person following the SAD diet.
If you want to know why and how, then read this article -
If you are thinking of starting a keto diet and want to establish just how inflamed your body is, then consider taking an inflammation test. We write more about it here in our Verisana Review.
Let’s get back to the popular keto foods that fight inflammation and support your keto lifestyle.
Top Anti Inflammatory Foods
Here they are...
1 - Bone broth
Why bone broth?
Well, you probably remember eating chicken soup as a child when you were sick. It may just be a folk remedy but it did make us feel better.
The reason why bone broth is anti-inflammatory is because it is a natural source of glucosamine and is high in the amino acids glycine and proline. It is packed with collagen and minerals and electrolytes.
And as every new Ketoer will know, when your body burns fat as its main source of fuel, your body needs more minerals and electrolytes.
The best is to make your own. It is easy to do but does take time.
If you don’t want to do that, then you have a few options. The first is to try these nutritious bone broths from Kettle & Fire.
If you are not sure which is the best product for you, then take their quiz.
Or you can try a bone broth powder. These are our 5 favorite bone broth powders.
Bone broth has lots of health benefits and supporting your gut is one of them, but it is not alone in this. Another food that is great to support gut health is:
2 - Fermented food
Fermented food has an important role to play in gut health. They provide us with the beneficial bacteria that our body needs and that is often crowded out by the less healthy bacteria that flourishes on sugar.
So, include sauerkraut and pickled food into your daily diet. Many ketoers will tell you that they crave pickles. Maybe this is one of the reasons why.
3 - Broccoli
Cauliflower and broccoli are staple vegetables for anyone following a keto diet. So, unless you follow a carnivore plan, you probably eat a fair amount of cruciferous vegetables.
Why is broccoli considered to be an anti-inflammatory food?
It is mostly because it is rich in sulforaphane, an antioxidant that fights inflammation by reducing the levels of cytokines and NF-kB. Both of which cause inflammation.
My favorite way to cook broccoli is to roast them in the over.
If you are looking for recipes with broccoli, you’ll want to try this broccoli salad.
4 - Avocados
Another popular keto super food!
They're rich in monounsaturated fats and antioxidants (carotenoids, tocopherols, polyphenols) and are packed with potassium and magnesium.
In an interesting study it was found that when healthy volunteers consumed a slice of avocado with a hamburger, they had lower levels of the inflammatory markers NF-kB and IL-6 than the group who ate the burger on its own.
There are so many amazing keto recipes with avocado. Here are just a few of my favorites:
I also make my favorite chocolate mousse with avocado. It is one of my favorite homemade low carb snacks. The recipe is about halfway down the page. It is number 18.
5 - Berries
Low carb candy!
Berries are packed with fiber, vitamins like vitamin C, minerals, antioxidants and phytonutrients.
One of these antioxidants is called anthocyanins that are known to have anti inflammatory effects.
Eat small quantities with your breakfast or add to a smoothie like the one mentioned above.
Or enjoy them fresh with whipped cream. I also like to add a few berries to the avocado chocolate mousse for an interesting fruity variation.
6 - Dark Chocolate
Eat the occasional block of dark chocolate. It is packed with antioxidants and its health benefits are well documented.
If you want to read more about how and why, then this article published at the National Center for Biotechnology Information is the one you want to read.
If you’d like to stock up on my favorite 85% chocolate then, this is it…
7 - Salmon and other fatty fish
As we started eating more seed oils, we created an imbalance in the omega 3 and 6 levels in our bodies.
The ratio of omega 3 and 6 should be around 1 to 1. For many people, this ratio is 6 to 1 and for some people following the SAD diet, this ratio is often as high as 30 to 1.
One of the best sources of Omega 3 is fatty fish like anchovies, herring, mackerel, salmon, and sardines.
How do we know that salmon or Omega 3 fatty acids reduce inflammation?
If you just cannot eat enough fatty fish, then supplement your diet with…
… and to get the maximum out of the long chain fatty acids, you may want to add some medium chain supplementation.
… and if you are wondering why the MCT oils support the reduction of inflammation, then this study done in rats explains it.
8 - Olive oil
Olive oil or more specifically extra virgin olive oil is an excellent fat to add into your ketogenic diet. It is rich in monounsaturated fats which is a great change from the saturated fat that most ketoers live off.
It contains various compounds that are anti-inflammatory by nature.
What I find especially interesting about virgin olive oil is that it contains the antioxidant oleocanthal. It has been found that the components in this antioxidant is similar to the anti-inflammatory properties found in an anti-inflammatory drug like ibuprofen.
As you would expect the anti-inflammatory benefits from extra virgin olive oil is higher than that of the more refined oils.
Extra virgin olive oil is also a great gift for a keto friend.
Lastly there are two spices that have anti-inflammatory properties. So, what are they?
9 - Turmeric
Turmeric is a yellow colored spice that has a strong and earthy flavor. It is the spice that gives curries and Indian dishes their exotic coloring.
In recent times there have been numerous studies to investigate the anti-inflammatory effect of turmeric or more specifically the element curcumin found in turmeric.
These studies show how turmeric reduces inflammation related to diseases like arthritis and diabetes.
One of the most interesting studies conducted with people who have metabolic syndrome, found that just 1 gram per day of curcumin combined with perine from black pepper resulted in a significant decrease in the inflammatory marker CRP.
If you want to add turmeric to your diet, then you’ll want to find some good low carb curry recipes. My favorite Indian Keto Cook is Sahil Makhija. Check out his blog The Headbanger’s Kitchen for the best keto Indian recipes.
However, even if you enjoy a few good curries a week, it is almost impossible to get the benefits from food alone.
For the maximum benefit consider a supplement with isolated curcumin combined with perine and added fats for best absorption.
10 - Ginger
Ginger is closely related to turmeric. It is often used for nausea. But its health benefits do not end there.
It appears to help in reducing inflammation in many ways. One is that it inhibits the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines thereby containing the inflammatory response.
It is also packed with antioxidants that helps to neutralize excess free radicals and thereby reduce inflammation.
Read everything about the health benefits of this powerhouse here.
With so many key keto foods, supporting the reduction or not causing inflammation in the first place, I am not surprised that the keto diet has a positive effect on reducing inflammation.
If you already eat these foods, continue doing so.
If not, what are you waiting for?
Add some of these healthy foods to your diet and as you do that, start eliminating the foods that are causing inflammation.
If you are not sure where how to start a keto diet, then check out our checklists.