The winter table is often full of heavy comfort foods and a bit scant on vegetables. What’s worse, many comfort dishes are loaded with ingredients that are known to cause or exacerbate inflammation, which can affect everything from your joints, arthritis, skin, digestion, leaky gut syndrome, and more. When you are trying to stick to anti-inflammatory foods to feel your best, it helps to remember what is in season in the winter months and to find ways to incorporate fresh foods and spices into your winter routine. Try adding a few of these ingredients to your favorite winter comfort classics as well as your morning smoothie recipes to make the most of these inflammation fighting foods and to help heal your body from the inside out. When combined with the right herbs and spices, many of these ingredients can also keep the winter blues away and strengthen your immune system as your digestion and the inflammation in your body improves. Here are some winter-time foods and recipes to reduce inflammation and keep you feeling warm, toasty, and healthy all winter long.
Turmeric is a well-known anti-inflammatory food and it’s easy to toss it into a plant-based protein smoothie, add to a salad dressing, or blend into an almond milk latte. This turmeric ginger coconut soup is another dish to add to your week night repertoire because it comes together in a few minutes for a simple, comforting soup that will warm you with this trio of inflammation fighting ingredients.
Kale makes excellent green smoothies and addictively crispy chips but this winter green also boasts high levels of vitamins A, K, and C, as well as a high fiber content. Tasty raw, steamed, sautéed, baked, or blended, kale is pretty versatile when it comes to getting your greens in the winter. A kale, beet, and berry smoothie combine three major anti-inflammatory foods and its low sugar content will double up on your efforts to quell the swelling. Toss it with a few simple ingredients for this Tuscan kale salad or put those leaves to work in this superfoods white bean and kale soup.
Ginger: similar to turmeric, ginger is anti-inflammatory as well as soothing to an upset stomach. Brew a ginger tea or grate some of this spicy root over a fresh garlic, ginger, turmeric stir fry for added flavor and inflammation reduction. Ginger also tastes great with greens in this creamy ginger green smoothie for a zippy morning sip.
Broccoli is loaded with vitamins A, B, K, B-6, fiber, protein, and minerals and it helps fight inflammation by encouraging healthy digestion and providing the necessary nutrientsyou’re your body to repair itself. Reap all of these benefits by throwing together a ginger broccoli stir fry over quinoa or making a winter pesto with broccoli, kale, and arugula.
Collagen peptides or bone broth have a whole host of health benefits besides fighting inflammation. Inflammation in the body and the gut are often related, thus, healing your gut can make a pronounced difference in how you feel over all. If you love the comfort of chicken noodle soup, try sipping on bone broth as an afternoon snack or adding it to a hearty vegetable stew for dinner. If you have a sweet tooth, try adding collagen peptides to your morning smoothie or post-workout protein shake for gut healing, inflammation fighting goodness which can also promote healthier skin, hair, nails, digestion, and stronger immunity while you’re at it. If it’s too cold for a smoothie, try this mulled cider with collagen peptides for a hot, wintery drink. Here are five easy ways to try collagen if you need more inspiration!
Chia seeds are high in fiber, omega-3s, protein, and vitamin C- all important factors in reducing inflammation and these tiny seeds even promote regular digestion. A superfoods chia pudding can be a creamy, tasty dessert or a quick make ahead breakfast the night before. You can also sprinkle them on top of smoothies, steel cut oats, and anywhere else you want a little omega-3 rich crunch.
Cacao is the unprocessed part of the dark chocolate you love… and, it’s loaded with antioxidants which reduce the effects of inflammation and it has all the chocolatey flavor we crave without the sugar. This chocolate almond sweet potato smoothie can help reduce inflammation by keeping your blood sugar balanced while combining this high fiber, healthy fat, and antioxidant rich trifecta of dark chocolate, almonds, and sweet potatoes. Psst, this healthy cookie dough milkshake is a frosty, winter wonderland dream come true.