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Are You Eating Foods that Damage Your Body?

Updated on April 28, 2013

What Does Inflammation Do?

Inflammation has the ability to influence the body. It can remove debris in the body, assist in repairing damaged tissue and defend our systems from foreign invaders like bacteria and viruses.

Inflammation plays an important role in atherosclerosis (Arteriosclerotic Vascular Disease or ASVD) by aiding in removing plaque buildup in arteries—the same buildup that can eventually cause a heart attack or stroke.

What Foods Hurt

By making simple changes in diet, we can aid the body in fighting out of control inflammation. The following are recommendations from the Harvard Medical School:

  • Change your oil—Inflammation causing oils are found in processed foods, baked goods, fatty meats, fried foods, butter, lard and palm oil. Use oil that has potent anti-inflammatory properties like olive oil and omega-3 fats (found in salmon, mackerel, tuna, walnuts, and vegetable greens instead of inflammation causing trans or saturated fats.

  • Ixnay on the refined carbohydrates—get rid of them. This includes white bread, french fries, potatoes, white rice and soda pop. These items raise blood sugar levels and increase inflammation because they release high levels of messenger molecules called cytokines. Too many cytokines increases the inflammation response. Add brown rice and whole grains to lower the cytokins released and to control blood sugar levels and insulin.

You may also benefit from removing chemicals and toxic substances from your house and kitchen cleaning routine.

What Foods Help?

What you eat can cause inflammation to run rampant in the body or can aid the body in calming and cooling down the inflammation.

Eat more of these:

  • Eat more produce—fruits and vegetables contain many substances that get rid of free radicals. Free radicals are unstable molecules that damage and age the body.
  • Add nuts as snacks and to meals. Include small amounts of peanuts, almonds, walnuts and seeds like sunflower seeds. An ounce of walnuts is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids.

  • Include fresh spices and herbs in recipes. Turmeric, garlic, basil, ginger and pepper have anti-inflammatory properties that aid the immune system.

Creating nutritious meals fast is easy to do using a panini press.


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