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Anyone tried anti-inflammatory diet?

I am interested to know if any one tried to completely go on an anti-inflammatory diet, and if it helped? I just ordered two books online about the subject, with recipes. I have tried about everything else, therapies, injections, medication, to keep the inflammation away. I have tried to eat healthy and probably already eat a lot of the anti-inflammatory foods, but I have not completely left red meat or sweets etc.

Just came back from trigger point injections, that help me with my muscle spasms in the upper back. My problem is in the lower back and gives me trouble walking or standing for. I work part time.




  • Diets do help, I am not sure what you mean by a anti-inflamatory diet? I personally follow the paleo plan, so no need to leave red meats. I actually got introduced to the program from a neurosurgeon. He is a firm believer in it for patients with spinal issues and nerve damage. But it does take some getting use to. Anyway that is the program I am using and it does help some, in addition improving my over all health.
  • I have never heard of the paleo plan, but I will look it up online. As for the anti-inflammatory diet, it's about eating less sugars, less fat and sodium, and anti-inflammatory vegetables and spices, no red meat. Sugars and wrong kind of fats can increase inflammation. Anti-inflammatory vegetables are pretty much all greens, like asparagus, celery, spinach. Anti-inflammatory spices would be for example ginger (fresh or ground), turmeric and chili. I'll know more once I get the books. But thanks for your answer.

  • charryccharry Posts: 5,657
    edited 08/07/2012 - 8:06 PM
    There are 5 lists of foods that may have a role in fighting pain and may be good for easing pain due to Arthritis or other inflammatory or painful conditions in the body. This Pamphlet was given to me from my Pain Management Dr.

    By using at least one of these foods from each list daily may help but may not banish your pain completely.

    Anti-Oxidants Omega-3 Flavanoids

    *Asparagus * Anchovies *Brazil Nuts *Apples
    *Avocados *Bluefish * Eggs *Grapes
    * Broccoli *Dogfish * Flaxseed/Linseed *Green Tea
    *Berries *Herring * Hazelnuts *Onions
    *Cauliflower *Mackerel * Hemp Seeds
    *Cabbage *Salmon *Pecans
    *Grapefruit *Sturgeon *Pumpkin Seeds
    *Kiwi Fruit *Sardines * Sesame Seeds
    *Oranges *Shad *Spinach
    *Peaches * Tuna *Walnuts
    *Tomatoes *Whitefish

    Beta-Cryptoxanthin Resveratrol

    * Apricots * Bilberries
    *Bell Peppers * Blueberries
    *Nectarines *Cranberries
    *Oranges * Grapes
    *Papaya *Mulberries

    Always check with Pharmacist to see if any food like Papaya or others like Pineapple may affect any blood thinning medications or antibiotics you may be on.
    A Dietitian may help put together recipes for you if possible. This is just a list of foods my PM Dr. gave me and not medical advise. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • finnoraffinnora Posts: 31
    edited 08/08/2012 - 4:06 AM
    Thanks for the suggestions Charry. Have you find them to help you. It seems that I already eat a lot of the food from the list daily, but I will add some more. Still also waiting for my books. Thanks.
  • charryccharry Posts: 5,657
    edited 08/10/2012 - 7:39 AM
    I have less sciatica pain and less crunching noises in my back but I still have back pain. I try to eat healthy and include orange juice, broccoli, onions, spinach daily and a multivitamin and multimineral as it's difficult since I don't do the shopping or cooking so kind of limited to what my husband prepares but we always have broccoli, spinach, carrots and corn and tomatoes and onions every supper with chicken and a side dish. I never get tired of eating the same veggies.

    I hope you enjoy your new nutrition books. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • Thank you for an interesting post finnora, I had never heard of an anti inflammatory diet before.

    This is definitely something I am going to read up on. After researching natural inflammatories I have found that the supplement Bromelain (derived from pineapples) is a good anti inflammatory and so I have started to take a course to see how it goes.

  • I can't vouge for this, but one of my doctors recommended reading the book Eat to Live (am I allowed to say the name of the book?), which is apparently an anti-inflammatory diet. He said it's a natural way to lose weight without counting calories. I have ordered it, so we'll see. He also mentioned that natural supplements that are very helpful are:
    fish oil
    fresh ginger
    bowellian herb

    Fingers crossed!
  • I received my two books that I ordered online, and read them. Very interesting, exept that some of the information on what to eat are quite opposite. Among other things, the list that charry posted as anti-inflammatory foods is true. Both books stress the importance of green vegetables, spices and seafood, whole grains, and organic food. Where they differ is fruits overall, and especially pineapple that ChrisMag mentioned. One of them says the same thing, that it has anti-inflammatory properties. The other one says that it's there with the other fruits, too much sugar. The other book recommends not to eat more than one fruit a day because of the fruit sugar contents, the rest of the day you are supposed to eat the vegetables listed, together with onions, garlic, ginger and or turmeric. Both of them say less salt, and less sodium, less processed food, meaning eating foods in their natural form, ex. no fruit juice but an orange.

    So, now I have been on the anti-inflammatory diet for a week and a half. Feeling good. I don't know if it has effected the painlevels, since I just got an epidural last week. Either way I feel better. Being on this diet has already made me loose weight and especially fat from my body. So far not in pounds very much, but in inches. My old pants from a year back fit me again, and people have been asking if I lost weight, so it's a good start. I'll let you guys know how it goes!!

  • Just thought I'd let you guys know what's happening. Been on the diet for a month.Most of my sugar and salt cravings are gone. I've lost 14 lbs, pretty much without problems. You can eat more often on this diet for sure, because all that you eat has less calories, and hardly any fat or sugar. I have learned to carefully watch the contents of everything I eat. I also started buying organic groceries, and I try to sneak in more veggies to the hubby and the kids. Pureing is a good way. You can steam and pure almost any veggies and add them to sauces, ex pasta sauce. I've cut down on my sodium intake and try to limit my soda intake to a couple a week. It's funny how the sense of taste changes with this diet. I used to crave a diet energy drink a day, and now if I taste it almost tastes bad and very fake. That craving is totally gone. Pressure pain seems to have eased a lot since I lost the weight.

    Hugs to you all!
  • myjade_84mmyjade_84 Posts: 23
    edited 06/27/2013 - 8:08 PM
    Here's an info about this diet.
    The Anti-Inflammatory Diet is not a diet in the popular sense - it is not intended as a weight-loss program (although people can and do lose weight on it), nor is it an eating plan to stay on for a limited period of time. Rather, it is way of selecting and preparing foods based on scientific knowledge of how they can help your body maintain optimum health. Along with influencing inflammation, this diet will provide steady energy and ample vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids dietary fiber, and protective phytonutrients.

    If you want to know more about it, check out the anti inflammatory diet . ** EDITED TO REMOVE LINK
  • My AMD recommended an anti inflammatory diet. She just said to eliminate anything white, sugar, flour, breads, cakes, any dairy which basically left meat and veggies. I am sure it is great but just could not see me living that way
  • finnoraffinnora Posts: 31
    edited 10/21/2013 - 9:53 AM
    Just wanted to share with all of you, that I have been on the anti-inflammatory regimen for a year now. I feel wonderful!!!!
    Such a change!! I have my life back!!!!

    As a short back ground: I have had 16 years of chronic back pain and leg pain, to the point where I have been walking on crutches, or on my toes, for 9 months at a time, several times during these 16 yrs. I could feel the inflammation in my whole body and as a "sunburn" on my skin, and pressure in my head. I had tried burning the nervendings, diffrent conventional and unconventional therapies, medications, injections, you name it. Some disc degeneration at L4-L5, L5-S1 showed up on MRI, nothing other than that. The EMG finally showed that there is an ongoing inflammation, and pain signals from L5-S1, but the docs have never discovered what actually is causing all of it, and why it would effect so heavily on my walking. Medrol dosepacks seemed to be the only thing to calm the situation down for a couple of months at a time. My life was very restrected. Chronic pain had taken over all aspects of my life. I decided to try the anti-inflammatory diet. I read up on it to make an informed decision.

    I started the process slowly by cutting down on sugar, salt, and sodas (used to drink a diet soda or energy drink a day) and cutting out red meat. I added green vegetables in different forms to all of my meals, and berries daily, as well as greek yoghurt. I cut down pasta, rice, bread and potato consumption. Sugar seems to be my main culprit in my body's inflammation process. For a while I cut out as much sugar as I could. I did not even eat fruits (fruit sugar). In 2-3 weeks I felt a jolt of energy and I started to lose weight. In 3 months my pain started decreasing. This all is not to provide any kind of guide lines, but to share my individual experiences with all of it, and perhaps to get one of you interested in trying it out. Eating healthy cannot hurt you, even if it would not have as dramatic results on you as it has on me. My pain levels kept decreasing. I started pilates little by little to build up my core strength again. Then increased exercise to include other floor exercises, again little by little. I started decreasing my pain pills, staying on the anti-inflammatory one and cymbalta. I was able to start low impact cardio exercises. Now I am to the point where I follow the anti-inflammatory diet quite carefully. I try not to eat anything with over 10-13 grams of sugar, if I feel like having sugar. I don't have fruit everyday. I do it greens everyday (broccoli, spinach, herbs, certain lettuces, aspargus, kale, etc.), and add almonds or cashews a couple of times a week. I still don't eat red meat, and keep even chicken at a minimum. I get my protein either from beans, lentils, eggs, quinoa, or soy. I eat berries and greek yoghurt almost daily. I eat ginger, garlic, turmeric, onion , greens, and chili daily, as well as drink 2-4 cups green tea a day. In addition, I use a superfood powder daily. A new "aquaintance" of mine is chia seeds. I have completely gone off my pain pills since 2mos ago. My pain mgmt doc recommends staying on the anti-inflammatory pill, which I am on one a day. Still also taking the lowest dose of cymbalta. Exercise wise I am to the point where I can do zumba. I exercise changing between low and high impact cardio,hydrobics, pilates, and other floor exercises, for about 1hr, 6 days a week. I feel like I am back to myself. I am so much happier and energetic.

    But it is a life style change, not a quick fix or a quick diet. And it is not always easy to resist bad foods. I do check the labels on all foods for sugar and sodium content, as well as fats. On special occasions like birthdays I will allow myself a little candy or cake, or a couple of bites chips, but otherwise I stay away from it completely. However, it is all worth the hard work! I have my happy personality back. I am able to work, I keep it down to part time 5-6hrs a day. I am able to do things with my kids, to do every day "normal people stuff". I am able to plan the next day. I am able to go places with my family. My marriage is better than it has been. I don't get frustrated over small things. I don't have to lay down every so often. I am able to go shopping, go to the zoo, you name it..... Instead of parking closest to the entrance using my handicap sign, I now park further away to get the extra exercise in;)

    You can ask me anything either on this website or email me. I will answer the best I can. I just want someone else to experience the relief I have.

    Hugs to you all!!!

  • I used to drink them a lot. I better get back to making them. At least it was something good for me.

    And they were actually good.
  • I got dramatic, immediate and positive results when I first started this diet. Unfortunately I have not lost weight because of the side effects of medication I must take. However, I recommend it to everyone.
    Truett Clifton-Vizvary
  • mackyy20mmackyy20 Posts: 1
    edited 10/13/2014 - 5:32 PM
    We all enjoy something sweet now and again,but with so much in the scientific literature confirming the negative health effects of refined sugar, one of the very best things that we can do for ourselves, and for our loved ones, is to use better alternatives.
  • I like the advice here and people searching for hope as I am often one of them. Before coming here I came across a top site looking for more healthy eating for healing. I read a private site with these claims of discrediting everything spine related to arthritis and disk herniations varrying in degree with mri evidence as fault to diet evening going as far as saying it was the persons fault and he doesn't feel bad for you "the reader of the herniation." I almost coughed if that wouldn't cause more pain. I'm sure there are instances where people move incorrectly at a computer desk and causes a mild bulge that can be healed partially with a better diet and the amount of pain they are in can't be expressed by anyone but themselves. But for the sake of that "doctor Christopher" he is an insult to the medical field. There are a lot of people who are in unbearable pain do to these things and claiming that they can be at fault to simply a diet and that he doesn't care about your Mri with Blah blah blah- . Just pathetic, if he really was a doctor at all. I think a good diet is deffinitely important to keeping good health but for it being an actual solution to mild and moderate cases- the time required may be extensive to see the benefits and the damage to the disk even when seen on mri can not be seen fully. If you are someone who injured your disk with a car accident or extreme labor over time, I think some of this may come off as insulting. Claims of minor issues showing up on mri for symptomless patients does not answer everything especially because most of the severe pain is in cases where nerve impingement occurs. So clearly things can show up on MRI and not result to remarkable pain- but for others who do have nerve root compression and are on paths that involve "eating healthy with low inflammatory" this is a joke. And then there are people with CNS and centrally located herniations- all of this is ignored in someone who was given the right to post his opinion on the web that could create a weak image to those who are suffering. disk herniations vary in degree and there are even medical people who say they are all he same thing... Come on we have a diverse language it's not hard to separate the differences. A ruptured disk means ruptured! A bulged disk means it is providing outwards of alignment but still in contact. A compressed disk means it's flattened and dehydrated. I was talking to a surgeon and said "isn't that a herniation" while pointing at the mri thing after he said you have a bulging disk. And he said "a disk bulge means the same thing." And continued to explain that I had two points of nerve root compression and flattening dehydrated disk. Bulging does not mean ruptured or leaking in anyway... Hope other people don't have experiences like this. Anyway this is for all the people suffering from any type of pain found on MRI. This webpage selling diets just pissed me off! Cheers I feel better now.
  • Also would like to add on a positve note that feeding your body deffinitely helps with recovery- I feel better with good meals and the right nutrients. Raw fruits with anti inflamatory benefits and forcing my body to walk and stand correctly even after sleep distorts it. Diets really work and I don't want people to think that they cannot/ but ignoring the possible realization of damage can cause worse damage if not treated, in my case I did hard labor and thought nothing of it. My body was the strongest it ever was- at 26 and carrying heavy materials in excess of 100 pounds up and down four flights of stairs for weeks with mild intermittent change in duty. The integrity of the disc may heal but to say it was what it was previously or if I'll ever be able to do the things I did before because of my eating- it's difficult to say and the "poor diet" was not my case as I was very well and eating well at the time of injury. Also not a smoker.
  • 1eric7411eric74 MissouriPosts: 2
    Can anyone give me info on the anti inflammatory diet that finnora had success with? Thank you.
  • 1eric7411eric74 MissouriPosts: 2
    Would like the anti inflammatory diet plan please.Finnora can you give some  tips?
  • SusanB.SSusanB. ARIZONAPosts: 2
    Hi Finorra - Is your back pain completely gone? I have tried the gluten free, dairy free, egg free diet. I have never eliminated sugar though. I have had 2 disectomys and about to have a spinal fusion. I thought maybe I would give the anti-inflammatory diet a try. I have found Tart Cherry to work a little for me, but not enough.
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