Following on from my post about chronic inflammation, I wanted to talk more about the causes, foods and lifestyle choices to avoid.
Inflammation is such a big topic at the moment and there is still so much we don't know about it. What we do know though, is that chronic inflammation can cause a whole host of problems and possibly some serious disorders of the body. These can be diseases such as hypertension, heart disease, cancer and Alzheimers (to name just a few).
Below is a list of diet and lifestyle choices I would recommend avoiding if you want to reduce the amount of inflammation in your body. Unfortunately, we can not completely treat inflammation through diet alone, but it can have a positive impact on the body.
We are all hopefully pretty aware by now the damage sugar has on the body. Fresh fruit and vegetable sugars are ok, but the sugars we really need to avoid are the processed ones. Think high fructose corn syrup and table sugar.
Highly processed white flours can also lead to inflammation of the body. Opt for more whole grains where possible. Foods with highly refined white flours like bread and pasta should only be eaten in moderation (and where possible, avoided altogether) as they can cause oxidative stress on the body.
JUNK FOODS AND FAST FOODS
The amount of chemicals in the products of fast foods is rather scary. These foods can contain so many additives the amount of inflammation they cause when eaten long term is concerning. These chemicals will enter the bloodstream and wreak havoc with your gut and immune system.
A little bit of fat in our diet is good for us. We need it in fact for our bodies to function correctly. Think about the importance of omegas for example. However, the fats we need to avoid are the trans fats or also known as 'partially hydrogenated' fats.
There are some vegetable oils that should be avoided too as the way the oils are extracted contain a lot of chemicals. These are oils such as sunflower, sesame, peanut, corn and rapeseed oil.
Plus palm oil (which is pretty much in everything nowadays) is another oil to avoid. The damage it causes to the environment is bad enough, let alone what it can do to our bodies!
We eat far too much salt full stop. A small amount is needed, but try not to add table salt to your meals or cooking. If it's really needed, then choose some pink Himalayan salt instead as it has a much higher mineral content.
A major cause of inflammation in the body, a glass of wine very occasionally might be ok, but alcohol each night (especially sugary drinks) are a definite no-no.
PRODUCTS CONTAINING CHEMICALS
Diet does have a major impact on the amount of inflammation in our bodies, but so does our lifestyle choices.
Try and avoid chemicals in your lifestyle. Think about the products that you use each day such as your deodorant, toothpaste, shower gels and shampoos. Opt for natural and organic wherever possible.
Too much stress can impact your levels of cortisol on the body, in turn leading to inflammation.
If you have a highly stressful lifestyle, then I would recommend less heavy exercise such as yoga. If you do like to have a more intense workout, ensure you have rest days in between each session to allow your body to recover.
It goes without saying right? Smoking will cause so much damage it so many ways. Do you hang your head over a bonfire and take a nice deep breath? Of course not! Don't put that toxic waste in your body full stop!
I know it's a substantial list and I'm not staying you have to quit it all cold turkey either. It's just always good to be aware of the things to avoid to ensure you can stay as healthy as possible... so you can feel as good as possible!
Coming next? Foods to eat to fight inflammation!
Thanks so much for reading,