Did you know that most bodybuilding lifestyle habits are largely inflammatory?! With the rise of environmental, physical and mental stressors paired with processed foods and poor sleep habits there has been a large increase in inflammatory related health issues within the community.

You may be wondering what the cause for concern is, well sit tight, I’m going to tell you.

Inflammation is an immune response generated by our bodies to any damaged tissue or potential threat.

There are several different kinds of inflammation that the body can incur. Most of you would be familiar with the type of inflammation that occurs when our body responds to physical trauma such as swelling, bruising, broken bones etc. However, potentially the most damaging type of inflammation and the one that is most detrimental to your recovery, strength and gains is one that you may not be aware of. So, who’s the big bad wolf? Systemic Inflammation.

What is Systemic Inflammation?

Systemic inflammation occurs inside the body. It is often generated by an autoimmune response to stressors and toxins. If left undetected it can easily inflate to a chronic state and as mentioned briefly earlier, can negatively affect many facets of your overall health such as sleep, recovery, digestion, physical progress, mood, cognitive function and so much more.

Symptoms of systemic inflammation vary person to person, but some common symptoms include insomnia, poor recovery, day long colds, low mood and energy, low libido, fatigue, joint pain, bloating, skin rashes and poor concentration.

Systemic Inflammation is normally a result of lifestyle factors.

High mental and physical stress levels, “over training” for your lifestyle, processed foods and poor sleep habits are at the top of the list for contributing factors.

Reducing Inflammation?

The best thing you can do for yourself (and your gains) when it comes to fighting inflammation is to modify some of your lifestyle habits.

1. Prioritise Sleep.

Set up a sleep schedule and night time routine so you’re hitting your 7-9 without fail.

2. Take A Chill Pill.

Implement daily stress management techniques; mediation, hitting your steps on the beach, grounding practices… whatever it is to you, get it done.

3. Recovery.

You also want to include structured rest days and a proper recovery routine when it comes to training. Physically stress contributes greatly to inflammation, this is why our muscles swell when our muscles are sore. Ensuring your give your body some down time is imperative to not only muscle growth but also in reducing inflammation.

4. Proper Nutrition.

Strive for a diet containing mostly wholefoods, loaded with antioxidants and omega 3’s.

5. Remove The Toxins

Watch the inflammatory foods; steer clear of alcohol and processed foods for the most part. If you have sensitives to dairy, gluten, soy, corn, peanuts and other legumes it is best to avoid these as well.

6. Supplementation when required.

More on this below.

So, let’s get to the good stuff.

8 Best Foods And Supplements For Fighting Inflammation?

  1. Greens Powders – loaded with antioxidants as well as alkalizing and digestive properties. Have you tried ONEST SUPERGREENS? Not only do they taste amazing, but they contain hundreds of compounds to help detoxify your body and reduce inflammation.
  2. ONEST X-FACTOR. An absolute essential product for anyone who trains. X-Factor improves muscle recovery by inhibiting inflammation. This inflammation fighting powerhouse is full of inflammation inhibiting properties like Vitaman E, A, Lutein and Astaxanthin. Want to know more? Click here:
  3. Turmeric. This power root contains cucumin which reduces inflammation in the body.
  4. Berries. Loaded with high dosages of the antioxidant, “anthocyanins” which has great anti-inflammatory effects on the body.
  5. Feast on fish. Specifically, salmon, mackerel and anchovies. Studies show EPA and DHA are metabolised by your body into compounds called “resolvins and protectins”, which have powerful anti-inflammatory effects and support joint health.
  6. Broccoli. This green machine is packed full of “sulforaphane”, an antioxidant with potent anti-inflammatory effects.
  7. Green Tea. The high EGCG content of green tea is known to reduce inflammation.
  8. Olive oil. Not the crappy cheap stuff, this is only applied to a good quality extra virgin olive oil. Olive oil contains the antioxidant “oleocanthal” which is known for its incredible anti-inflammatory properties.
  9. Dark chocolate. Yeah, you read that correctly. Dark chocolate and pure cacao contain flavanols which fight inflammation.

By making a conscious effort to make small alterations to your lifestyle, not only will you be improving your sleep quality, mental state and diet but you’ll also be directly reducing systemic inflammation in the body. This will lead to improved gut health and recovery, as well as better looking skin, cognitive function and mood. By targeting your sleep, digestion, recovery and nutrition, you’ll indirectly have better lifts, greater assimilation of nutrients through proper digestion and a more efficient muscle recovery.

What does this mean? BIGGER, FASTER GAINS. Sounds like a win to me.