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  • Writer's pictureRobin Hill LMT, RN

Foods affect inflammation in my body?? What??

The body has about 230 joints and they are all vulnerable to inflammation. As we know, inflammation can limit range of motion and cause pain. Researchers have found a correlation of painful and chronic inflammation to diet. People with a diet that consists of highly processed foods; refined sugars, trans fats and simple carbs will be more likely to develop systemic inflammation.

Here are some of those foods that are more likely to cause inflammation in the body:

1. Sugars- refined such as those found in candies, sodas, condiments and other common foods.

2. Wheat (gluten)- gluten stimulates an allergic response.

3. Dairy and Milk Products – more and more people are developing a lactose intolerance, which messes with the body’s metabolic balance. Some cows are exposed to antibiotics and steroids.

4. Processed foods – when a food is processed, some beneficial nutrients have been removed and artificial ones infused in their place.

5. Fast Foods - these tend to be very high in unhealthy, saturated and trans fats, sodium and sugar.

6. White Bread - many of the healthy benefits have been bleached and processed out.

7. Pasta – primarily made up of simple carbohydrates, which convert to sugar in the body.

8. Ice Cream – artificial ingredients and high concentrations of fats and sugars.

9. Cheddar Cheeses – white cheese has less saturated and trans fats, and less artificial coloring.

10. Snack Foods – usually packed full of unhealthy fats, refined sugars, sodium and artificial ingredients.

11. Saturated Fats – vegetable and corn oils have unhealthy fats. Anything that has the ingredient of hydrogenated, partially hydrogenated are very unhealthy.

12. Alcohol – (yep, this one is a tough one..) Is a depressant and can suppress the immune system, and inhibit recovery from inflammation.

13. Soy - Researchers are finding that soy contains properties that may inhibit thyroid function while also suppressing the healing process.

Americans tend to eat a diet that is high in saturated and trans fats, sugar and simple carbohydrates. Obesity rates are through the roof, diabetes and heart disease are on the rise, and one in five Americans suffer from joint pain.

There are foods that can combat inflammation! Yay! The human body has about 230 joints, which are where two bones come together. The names of joints and how they work gets very technical, so I will not be discussing that in this blog.

There are foods rich in antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, proteins, healthy fats and complex carbohydrates. Here is a list of 10 inflammation-fighting foods to have in your diet.

1. Alaskan Salmon – wild is preferred.

2. Fresh, whole fruits and vegetables

3. Bright multicolored vegetables

4. Healthy drinks such as water or green tea

5. Olive oil

6. Lean Poultry

7. Nuts, legumes and seeds

8. Dark, leafy green vegetables

9. Old fashioned oatmeal

10. Spices like turmeric and ginger.

These foods are great for muscle building and maintaining weight. Strong muscles support the joints. These foods will not completely remove inflammation, but will increase your body’s ability to deal with inflammation.

DRINK YOUR WATER!!! More than one half of the human body is made up of water. The adult male is about 60%, and the adult female is about 55%. The percent of water in your body depends on your hydration level. Most of us walk around dehydrated. If you feel thirsty during exercise, you have already lost 2-3% of water in your body. A good way to monitor your hydration is through your urine color. It should be plentiful and pale yellow.

Stress and a lack of sleep also have an effect on our pain levels. That warrants a different discussion. Stay healthy and happy!

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