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What is Inflammation and What Does it Do?

What is Inflammation and What Does it Do?

When your body recognizes anything that is foreign—such as an invading microbe, plant pollen, or chemical, it can trigger what is called an inflammatory response. This is your body’s protective reaction and very often keeps you from becoming ill.

If the inflammation persists, it can end up hurting you instead of helping you. Many major diseases including cancer, heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, depression, and Alzheimer’s—have been linked to chronic inflammation.

What do I eat that causes inflammation?

  • soda and other sugar-sweetened beverages
  • red meat (burgers, steaks) and processed meat (hot dogs, sausage)
  • Margarine, shortening and lard. Vegetable and seed oil.
  • refined carbohydrates, such as white bread and pastries
  • Excessive Alcohol
  • Trans fats
  • French fries and other fried foods

What should I do about this?

Though we are a society that uses medications for everything, “Many experimental studies have shown that components of foods or beverages may have anti-inflammatory effects,” says Dr. Frank Hu, professor of nutrition and epidemiology in the Department of Nutrition.

An anti-inflammatory diet emphasizes foods that reduce inflammation.

  • fruits, berries, and vegetables
  • foods containing omega-3 fatty acids such as cold water fish, such as salmon and tuna, and tofu, walnuts, flax seeds and soybeans.

Other additions to your diet can include:

Curcumin (Turmeric), Ginger, Cayenne Pepper, Cinnamon, Cloves, Sage, Rosemary, Black pepper, Green tea.

Decreasing your inflammation can improve your health for the rest of your life. Changing what you eat can change your future, no matter how old you are.

Last modified: December 11, 2020

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