Avoid inflammation with this turkey pumpkin chili

Turkey Pumpkin Chili

Your neck and back beg for comfort. Your heart reaches for that reindeer-shaped cookie. With winter back pain, hot cocoa and sweet treats make you feel cozy, but fueling the fire of inflammation does not. Warm up without a flare-up using our pumpkin turkey chili recipe, packed with anti-inflammatory foods.

We know eating pumpkins can fight back pain, and ground turkey can fit into your anti-inflammatory diet, too. The trick is knowing what type of ground turkey to buy. Go for the label that says “ground turkey breast” instead of “ground turkey.” Plainly labeled ground turkey likely contains turkey skin and fat, but ground turkey breast contains only turkey breast meat — and that’s not the only secret to this anti-inflammatory dish.

This hearty mix of lean protein, vitamin A, fiber and minerals helps promote digestion, maintain a healthy weight and even prevent diabetes. It’s also gluten-free:

Anti-inflammatory turkey pumpkin chili

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 small onion, chopped

1 green bell pepper, chopped

3 (or desired amount) cloves garlic, minced

1 pound organic ground turkey breast

15-ounce can pumpkin purée

14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes

16-ounce can small red beans, cooked

1 cup water

1 bay leaf

1 tablespoon poultry seasoning

1 teaspoon cumin

1/2 teaspoon basil

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

Season the ground turkey breast with poultry seasoning and set aside. In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, sauté the onion, bell pepper and garlic in olive oil until ingredients start to soften. Add seasoned turkey to the pan. Once turkey is fully cooked, stir in the pumpkin, water, beans and tomatoes with bay leaf. Add the cumin, basil, sea salt and pepper. Bring all ingredients to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes. Top with a dollop of Greek yogurt and chopped scallions!

Don’t let your spine health hibernate this winter. If the benefits of an anti-inflammatory diet and other conservative treatments haven’t given you needed relief, it may be time to reevaluate your neck and back pain. Contact Laser Spine Institute to find out if we treat your chronic spine condition — we may be able to help you leave those painful flare-ups out in the cold.

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