Our Team this summer would like to help you better understand a chronic inflammatory response and explain how it manifests in the body based on two triggers: genetics and lifestyle. Our family history can provide us with a sneak peak of which health issues we may be at increased risks for developing. However, our lifestyle is the most influential factor in determining if those predisposed health issues will manifest.
The first and most powerful way to reduce chronic inflammation is by removing the consumption of pro-inflammatory foods.
What’s a pro-inflammatory food?
Certain foods place acute stress on the body; and with increased intake of these types of foods, the normal, acute inflammatory response becomes chronic. The most common pro-inflammatory foods include: refined grains and grain-fed meats, fried and/or processed foods, and vegetables oils.
To make the issue more complex, many of us have sensitivities (or intolerance) to certain types of foods that also cause an inflammatory response. This is not to be confused with a food allergy. Unlike a food allergy, a food sensitivity can cause a reaction anywhere from 30 minutes to 3 days after consuming the food. The most common foods to be intolerant to are gluten/wheat, dairy, eggs, corn, soy, peanuts, tomatoes, pork, citrus foods and shellfish. However, any individual based on their genetic makeup and lifestyle can have any combination of these food sensitivities or others.
Classic symptoms of food sensitivities include muscle or joint pain, digestive issues, headaches, sinus congestion, and brain fog.
Unfortunately, many times these symptoms are incorrectly associated with illness and aging, rather than reactions to food consumption. One great way to determine which food sensitivities you’re suffering from, is to go through a supervised elimination diet.
Are there anti-inflammatory foods?
YES! Foods that are rich in antioxidants have a protective and anti-inflammatory effect on the body. Increase your antioxidant intake by consuming more fruits and vegetables which are rich in vitamin C and E, while also increasing your intake of anti-inflammatory herbs. Some of my favorite antioxidants to supplement with include: rosemary, turmeric, organic green tea, ginger and resveratrol.
Stay tuned to learn more about anti-inflammatory supplements! For more information on how you can achieve better health contact our office today so we may help you achieve Optimal Health!
For Your Health,
Dr. Scott Van Dam