Inflammation can be a blessing or a curse, depending on the situation. On the one hand, acute inflammation can be an important part of the healing process in the body. But chronic inflammation, or inflammation that lingers in the body for a long time, can seriously damage your cells and tissues and potentially increase your risk for complications like rheumatoid arthritis, heart disease, and even certain types of cancer.
And while acute inflammation, which usually lingers in the body for a short period of time, is caused by factors such as infection and injury, chronic infection can be the result of lifestyle choices including cigarette smoking, obesity, constant exhaustion, stress, and choosing certain “pro.” -inflammatory “foods versus anti-inflammatory.
Addressing many of these factors is pretty straightforward. For example, since smoking cigarettes increases the chances of developing chronic inflammation, giving up smoking can help reduce it.
When it comes to eating habits, there are many ways that can contribute to this health condition. When trying to lower your chronic inflammation, here are 11 eating habits to avoid. Read on, and for more on how to eat healthily, don’t miss out on 15 Underrated Weight Loss Tips That Actually Work.
From beef to chicken to tofu, there are tons of proteins to choose from when you put your plate together. However, if fish and shellfish aren’t on your protein rotation, you may be missing some anti-inflammatory nutrients.
If you’re a seafood lover, enjoying a mahi sandwich or some fish tacos can help you manage chronic inflammation in your body, thanks in part to the omega-3 fatty acids these foods contain.
The omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA are found primarily in marine springs, and adequate amounts of these nutrients have been linked to reducing chronic inflammation.
For generally healthy people, the latest dietary guidelines for Americans recommend eating at least 8 ounces of seafood per week. Just make sure you don’t go for a fried option as consuming foods cooked this way will be against your goals.
Do you have a vegan diet and do without seafood? No sweat! An algae-based DHA supplement can help treat inflammation and is a completely vegan source of this important nutrient.
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You might want to put that extra glass of Chardonnay on hold when you’re out with your friends.
While light to moderate drinking can actually reduce inflammation in the body, heavy drinking can lead to increased inflammation and should be avoided.
Keep an eye on your alcohol and don’t overdo it if you want to get a grip on your inflammation levels.
CONTINUE READING: Side Effects of Quitting Alcohol, According to Science
White bread can be just right when a Sammie cravings arise, but choosing instead of whole grains can wreak havoc on your inflammation management.
To make white bread, the grains used as an ingredient are refined. This removes nutrients such as fiber, healthy fats and certain vitamins and minerals.
Thanks to the lack of nutrients like fiber and fat, consuming refined starches like white bread can quickly alter blood sugar and insulin levels and, in turn, increase the production of pro-inflammatory factors.
Replacing your refined white bread with a whole grain bread can be an easy way to reduce inflammation in your body. Try the best bread to eat with, according to a nutritionist.
High fructose corn syrup is a type of corn-based sweetener that is used to sweeten foods instead of sugar because it is a cheaper option. It provides carbohydrates and calories and essentially no other nutrients.
Drinking soda or anything else made with this syrup has been linked to increased inflammation, although consuming regular table sugar doesn’t seem any better for you. Sugar-free sparkling water or good, old-fashioned water is best. Check out these 25 healthy, low-sugar soda alternatives.
Whether you opt for almond, soy, or classic dairy products, drinking your milk can add to your inflammation if you go for a flavored choice (like chocolate or vanilla) if the variety you choose is flavored with sugar, because sugar can promote inflammation in the body. And since some flavored milk can contain around 25 grams of sugar per serving, it’s a smart idea to check the nutrition label before swallowing your drink.
Choosing a tasteless choice will serve you well in the inflammation department.
If you don’t take the pass for meals like a salad with grilled chicken on top, eating fast food can reduce your chances of getting a well-treated inflammation.
In fact, a study published in the journal Cell suggests that a diet high in many types of fast foods can trigger an inflammatory response and even damage your immune system.
Packing your own lunch instead of having an oversized meal may be a better choice to support your health.
Processed meats – think bacon, sausage, and lunch meats – contain advanced glycation end products (AGEs), a component that can cause inflammation in the body.
AGEs are formed when reducing sugars react with proteins under high heat. These compounds can improve the taste of foods, but they may not be good for our overall health.
You are better off choosing fresh and less processed meat to keep your body stronger. Or better yet, opt for a meatless meal every now and then.
Sweets can certainly satisfy a sweet tooth. But eating too much of the sweet stuff can increase inflammation thanks to the sugar it contains.
Whether from candy, cake, or other sweet treats, consuming large amounts of sugar can promote inflammation in healthy adults.
Swap your candy for naturally sweet berries. You will still get that fantastic taste without the risk of inflammation.
We know that too much sugar can contribute to inflammation. But replacing your sweet things with artificial sweeteners may not be the best solution.
In a study published in Nature, the results show that the consumption of artificial sweeteners can change the composition of the bacteria found in the intestines. In particular, it can reduce the amount of “good bacteria” that help release anti-inflammatory compounds.
If you need something sweet, try 100% pure maple syrup from Canada. This syrup contains a unique compound called Quebec that has anti-inflammatory effects on the body. A little bit tastes really good in coffee!
Fruits and vegetables are packed with natural compounds that support the health and wellbeing of our bodies. And when it comes to fighting inflammation, consuming more fruits and vegetables can actually help reduce that effect.
Only 1 in 10 Americans eats the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables. So, if you are not the exception, there are probably some products you need to eat better.
If you prefer your chicken and potatoes fried rather than baked, you may inadvertently add to your elevated levels of inflammation.
When foods are fried, they tend to have higher levels of advanced food glycation end products (the same potentially harmful compounds found in processed meat) that can cause inflammation.
Try breading and baking your foods instead of frying them to relieve your inflammation.
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