The best anti-inflammatory foods are those high in omega-3 fatty acids and low in omega-6 fatty acids, states Health.com. In addition, certain fruits, vegetables, herbs and spices contain higher levels of anti-inflammatory agents than others, such as antioxidants and flavonoids, according to Mayo Clinic.
Fatty fish that are high in omega-3 fatty acids include salmon, mackerel, tuna, herring and trout, states Mayo Clinic; vegetable sources of omega-3s include soy-based foods such as tofu and soy milk, and walnuts, pecans and ground flaxseed. Extra virgin olive oil, although not a source of omega-3s, also has anti-inflammatory properties, states Mayo Clinic.
Foods that are rich in antioxidants include colorful fruits and vegetables, such as kale, beets, blueberries, cranberries and spinach, states the Mayo Clinic, which also lists beans, other nuts, green tea, red wine, dark chocolate, cinnamon, ginger and turmeric as foods high in antioxidants. Whole grains rather than refined grains also help reduce inflammation, states Health.com, which says that a diet high in whole grains, nuts, leafy greens and fish has been shown to lower inflammation in as little as six weeks.
Food is still the preferred source, but some herbs and supplements seem to have anti-inflammatory properties as well, such as fish oil supplements, cat's claw, devil's claw, mangosteen and milk thistle, notes Mayo Clinic.