Research shows that chronic inflammation contributes to a variety of serious health conditions like digestive and reproductive challenges, a weakened immune system and increased diabetes. Just to name a few.
When your body encounters something it can’t recognize (like viruses, bacteria or toxic chemicals) or suffers an injury, it activates an immune response. Your immune system sends out inflammatory cells to begin to heal this.
These cells begin an inflammatory response to trap bacteria and other foreign invaders and start healing injured tissue. The result of inflammation can be pain, swelling, bruising or redness. But inflammation also affects body systems you can’t see (digestive or sleep issues, bowels, liver function, estrogen levels, ect.).
- Inflammation can come from an injury to the body (cutting your finger, surgeries, arthritis, joint issues).
- Exposure to toxic chemicals (pollution, household or industrial cleaners. Even alcohol consumption).
- From food (see list below).
- High stress lifestyles or having too much body fat on your body. Over exercising.
Foods that increase inflammation in the body:
- Processed Foods & Meats (packaged on the go food, deli meats)
- Foods Fried in Seed Oils (potato chips, donuts)
- Refined/Processed Carbs (most wheat/gluten based products)
- North American Dairy (milk, cheese)
- Corn based products (corn syrup)
- Refine Sugar and Artificial Sweeteners
Swapping out inflammatory foods for non inflammatory foods can be very beneficial for your health. A healthy, well-rounded diet should comprise mostly of nutrient-dense, whole foods, including fruits, veggies, nuts, seeds, herbs, spices, healthy fats and good quality protein.
Oftentimes, inflammation can go down with shifts to our day to day lifestyles.
- Nourish your body well with single ingredient foods and avoid eating inflammatory foods.
- Get 7-8 hours of uninterrupted sleep each night + be sleeping by 10pm nightly.
- Move your body daily, but don’t over exercise. 30-60 minutes is good enough 5x per week. Don’t forget rest days.
- Practice mindfulness. Journal, meditate or practice gratitude daily to help reduce mental stress.
- Support basic functions with quality supplements.
- Limit alcohol consumption and avoid smoking.
- Ensure your liver and gut health are working optimally.
Start making a few swaps today and get started on eating a more anti-inflammatory diet!