Health

Chronic Inflammation: There Is a Dietary Link

Chronic Inflammation Rob Keller MD

Doctors are trying to get a message across.  You are what you eat.  And while we have heard that time and time again, researchers are realizing and publishing the findings that bear the incredible link between the foods we eat (or avoid eating) and health complications including cancer, heart conditions and chronic inflammation.   The good news is that studies have shown that dietary modification can go a long way to helping to treat and even eliminate chronic inflammation.

If you suffer from painful inflammation, the next step is to evaluate which foods are in your diet that may be causing the problem.


Cooking Oil 


The vegetable cooking oil that is a staple in every kitchen are extremely high in omega-6 fatty acids and deficient in omega-3 fats.   Studies have shown that a dramatically unbalanced ratio of these two fats actually increases inflammation that can lead to heart disease, stroke and cancer.


Make a healthy change by eliminating industrial vegetable oils, processed foods and take out as much as possible.   At home, switch to extra virgin olive oil or macadamia oil, which has an almost equal ratio of omega-6 and omega-3 fats.   These heart healthy oils are also a rich source of oleic acid (omega-9) and some studies have shown that it can help raise good cholesterol (HDL) high density lipoprotein in the blood.


Milk


Did you know that more than 60% of the world adult population cannot digest milk?   While it is great for infants, in adulthood it can cause inflammatory issues in the stomach and digestion and bowel problems.   Hives, skin rashes and other allergic reactions can occur.


Make a healthy change by eliminating or reducing the amount of milk and dairy products that you consume if chronic inflammation is a problem.   Consider Kefir a good alternative for both drinking and cooking, and offers a powerful probiotic.  


Red Meat


Bad news if you really enjoy the grill.  Red meat is a culprit according to the San Diego School of Medicine and their report “How Eating Red Meat Can Spur Cancer Progression” .  Why is red meat so bad for us?   Apparently red meat contains Neu5Gc, a molecule not normally found in the human body.  When consumed, the immune system creates antibodies in response which can also create inflammation.

What is even more alarming is that regular consumption of red meat can lead to low grade prolonged inflammation, or basically the kind that you are aware of but not bothered by.  This kind of “comfortable” inflammation over a long period of time has been strongly connected to the development of heart disease and cancer (particularly of the rectum, colon and mouth and throat cancers).


Make a healthy change by reducing the amount of red meat in your diet.   North American’s eat far more red meat than any other continent.  Introduce more ‘meatless’ meals to your diet and you may even find your digestion, appearance and complexion and other small signs of inflammation disappear.  



What is your favorite tip for getting healthy (and staying on track) when it comes to nutrition?  Share with us on Facebook or Twitter.

 

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