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Avoid These Foods That Cause The Most Inflammation
Do you often feel bloated, uncomfortable, and sluggish? You may be eating foods that increase inflammation. Inflammation is a normal bodily response to injury or infection, but chronic inflammation can lead to major health problems. Luckily, there are several anti-inflammatory foods that can help reduce inflammation.
When it comes to chronic inflammation, what you eat can make a big difference. There are certain foods that are known to promote inflammation in the body, and avoiding them can help keep your symptoms under control. Here’s a look at some of the worst offenders when it comes to inflammatory foods.
What is this thing called inflammation?
Inflammation is a natural response that happens which may have good or bad effects on the body. It occurs for
many reasons, including when you are sick or hurt. But many foods also create an inflammatory response. Yet this doesn’t mean that random eats always cause swelling and tenderness. It is often after having those with additives for quite some time that leads to it. So try to find out what foods increase inflammation or cause it.
Find out what they are and try to avoid them because of the possible troubles that they could bring. Yet if this is unavoidable then at least reduce your consumption at least. Below are some of the most common food additives that you may want to steer clear of.
But Before Anything Else, know what foods increase inflammation
You have to understand that food additives are also quite helpful. This would be due to their helpfulness in making food last longer plus taste, feel, and look better. It is only that they may cause harm to the human body after frequent ingestion.
1. High-Fructose Corn Syrup
Companies use this food additive since it using it is cheaper than sucrose or table sugar. This is because the production cost of modern food items is often quite expensive. Plus, the demand for sweeter treats is high. So it’s easy to find this sweetener in grocery stores. It is likewise incorporated into processed food.
It is for sale in bottles. Yet food manufacturers often distribute it with fast food products and breakfast cereals. It is even in baked and canned goods, dairy products, and sodas. What foods increase inflammation are these and more so be watchful. Taking a lot of it may make you gain weight, according to a study. Thus you may also end up swollen and having body pains because of the weight gain from having it.
Replace it with…
- Look for foods prepared with naturally sweet options such as fruit, plants such as stevia, or derivatives such as allulose.
- When baking, use these same natural sweeteners, too. Most substitute one-for-one with sugar or corn syrup.
- Avoid the dependence on sweetness. Studies indicate that people often become addicted to sugars. As with any addiction, avoiding the substance may be difficult at first, but the way to break the addiction is to avoid the substance. Remember, corn syrup and refined sugars offer no real food value but do contribute to several health issues.
2. MSG Or Monosodium Glutamate
This is a crystalline substance is a flavor enhancer used in many places around the globe. Many even consider it an important ingredient and mix it in their dishes and light meals. People use them to make their broths, spices, and sauces taste better. They are also for enhancing the flavor of soups, veggies, meat, and poultry. Accessing it is easy because it is in the household, commercial, and processed foods. A person who would search what foods cause the most inflammation may find this one on top.
It binds to glutamate receptors of the body and things occur when that happens. Prolonged use can lead to health problems. One research says they are obesity, Chinese restaurant syndrome, and reproductive issues. All the conditions mentioned involve internal tissue swelling.
Replace it with…
- Rather than replacing MSG, consider just avoiding the substance. While it does offer some flavor enhancement, switching to other ingredients makes sense. These might include broths, herbs, spices, or stronger flavored vegetables such as mushrooms.
- When eating out or buying ready-made, look for foods made without MSG. With more awareness, restaurants and manufacturers are providing more options without MSG.
3. Artificial Sweeteners
So many of these are available right now because of the demand for them. They are synthetic products designed to mimic or even surpass the taste of table sugar. There is no sugar or only a negligible amount of it in them. What also makes them appealing is their zero or at least low-calorie content. Yet they are controversial because of some evidence that points to their harmfulness.
Examples of these are aspartame, saccharin, sucralose, and sugar alcohol. They come in small packets that are easy to open and are available in homes and businesses worldwide. But they are often skipped by many. This is because of their recorded neurotoxic and inflammatory properties.
Replace it with…
- As with corn syrup, look for whole foods with natural sweetness. Some popular choices are stevia, allulose, and fruit purees.
4. Sodium Benzoate
This is a preservative so it improves the shelf life of food items. Folks use this to stop the growth of harmful microbes such as bad bacteria and molds. Yet people should be careful even if it helps prevent food spoilage. That is because it also comes with health hazards.
Long-term intake of it has caused many to experience allergic and inflammatory reactions. Slight or serious irritations and swelling may result in acute and chronic diseases. So be careful when eating pickled food, salad dressings, and condiments.
Replace it with…
- Read labels to ensure you know what’s in your food. If it has sodium benzoate, consider a different option.
- Consider more fresh or frozen foods. When properly prepared fresh or fresh than frozen, foods don’t need preservatives, including sodium benzoate.
5. Sodium Nitrite
This is an inorganic compound that is a typical add-on to food to improve its shelf life. It is a crystalline mixture and soluble in water. People use it in cured meat products. So you have it when you eat bacon, salami, jerky, ham, corned beef, and hotdogs. Finding out what foods increase inflammation gives you an informed decision when eating.
It may make food look good and last longer, but can cause cellular damage. Swelling due to irritation from it can also happen. The compound may increase one’s risk of having heart disease. That is because it damages the blood vessels and even narrows and hardens the arteries.
Replace it with…
- Avoid foods that contain nitrites. In fact, most vegan foods don’t contain these, but be sure to check the label.
- Again, consider fresh or quickly frozen options, too.
6. Trans Fat
Making this involves a process called hydrogenation by combining vegetable oil with hydrogen. The purpose of it is to prevent spoilage and also give food a unique texture. You can get it from a lot of food sources because many companies use it. It is most common in fast or fried food, snack, and cake products.
It is fat and thus grams of it have plenty of calories too. So consuming a lot of it may result in different health problems. It can increase your fat deposits and triglycerides. Thus, it may make your arteries swell from plaques and put you at risk of cardiac issues.
Replace it with…
- Many mistakenly believe that plant-based foods don’t contain trans fats. However, the truth is, some do. Consider fried foods, bakery items, and even that vegetable shortening your Grandma uses to make flakey pie crust.
- Avoid products that contain partially hydrogenated oils. Instead, choose healthier oils such as extra-virgin olive oil or coconut oil.
- When possible, avoid oils entirely. Try sauteeing in broth, rather than frying in oil, for instance.
7. Guar Gum
This is a thickening agent to make certain food items more viscous. Chefs and bakers use this to prepare dishes and desserts. You can consume a few of it after eating commercial sauces, soups, and cakes. It makes liquid thicker and more stable for consumption.
Ice cream and yogurt often have it in small amounts. Yet this doesn’t mean that it is already fine to have plenty of it. Rather, experts tell folks to only have moderate consumption of it. Having plenty for a long time may cause digestive issues or even serious gut problems. Small amounts even irritate and inflame the bowels already somehow.
Replace it with…
- For people with guar gum sensitivities, consider using only occasionally or use another thickening agent.
- Some other thickeners include:
- corn starch (look for organic varieties from non-GMO plants)
- Agar Agar. Derived from algae or seaweed,
- Chia Seeds. …
- Ground Flax Seed. …
- Pectin. …
- Psyllium Fiber/Psyllium Husk Powder.
- pureed vegetables or fruit such as potatoes, sweet potatoes, apples, etc
8. Artificial Flavorings and colorings
Flavor experts combine inorganic ingredients to make synthetic products. These copy the taste of spices, fruits, veggies, meat, and poultry among many things. Many say they are bad add-ons to foods that cause the most inflammation. That is because plenty of folks reported being sensitive to it.
There are a lot of people who claim to have had their diseases exacerbated because of consuming it. Some even said that they experienced gastric upset too. This is all after having taken it for a lengthy period. Having repeated inflammatory responses such as allergies can be dangerous. It is possible to have breathlessness as part of an allergic reaction caused by a food additive.
Replace it with…
- Natural flavorings. These offer better flavor and often contain nutritional benefits, too.
- Consider if you truly need those extreme colors. If so, look for natural colorings such as beet juice, spinach, etc.
9. Refined Carbs
There are many ways in how people make it. Refined or bad carbs often come from processed grains and sugars. Milling made it possible to enhance their longevity and texture. But such also strips them of nutrients like B vitamins, iron, and fiber. Yet people continue to produce this type of carb to get glucose faster.
Some examples of food that have it are white bread, cakes, and noodles. The consequence of consuming a lot of it is having excess sugar. Its absorption is easy for the body to do. Yet it also makes a person feel hungry after some time. That is because insulin leaves a person feeling this way after clearing sugar in the system.
Replace it with…
- Whole grains offer more nutritional benefits, including fiber content and vitamins and minerals. Experiment with various types such as white wheat, which is still a whole grain. Remember, you might need to adjust the liquid amounts when cooking or baking with whole grains. The extra fiber usually requires extra liquids.
- Look for whole-grain bread, cereals, and even pasta when shopping. Due to increased interest in these products, they have become more available nearly everywhere.
Beverages, too, in our study of what foods increase inflammation
10. Alcoholic Beverages, Sodas, Fruit Drinks
Binge drinking does not only cause intoxication, but also gut problems. For instance, when you drink a lot, your liver gets inflamed. The proof of this is having increased C-reactive Protein or CRP levels. This is indicative of inflammation. Plus, excessive consumption leads to bowel issues. So it is best to drink in moderation.
Drinks are also foods that cause the most inflammation for a few reasons. They disrupt the gut homeostasis. Alcohol stays in the body for a day or two and is an addictive substance. So you might get hooked on it.
Replace it with…
- Healthier options include herbal tea, coffee, and of course, water. Not a fan of plain water? Add a little lemon juice or lime juice. You might even prefer a spritz of cherry juice or other fruit.
- Smoothies made with whole fruit and vegetables (leave the sugars out).
Having Less Of What Foods Increase Inflammation Offers Best Health Benefits
Be wise when you eat. Consider the ideas mentioned and try to moderate your consumption. If you can’t prevent yourself from having food additives. then at least lessen your intake. It is often safe to have small amounts of food anyway.
Choose healthy options but things like fruits and vegetables to avoid. For instance, eating more than enough fruits can spike your sugar levels. The same thing would happen if you binge on complex carbs that are easy to digest.
Common Problems That Cause Inflammation Because Of Foods and Additives
Dysbiosis can happen after prolonged consumption. Sugar substitutes are examples of what can cause this. The condition results in having unvaried microbes. The good or beneficial bacteria also become fewer. So harmful pathogens may invade the gut and cause the body to become defensive. Thus, diseases would also surface.
Hyperglycemia, including diabetes due to additive intake, may also be present. Additives like high-fructose corn syrup cause metabolic responses such as insulin resistance. So glucose accumulates in the blood and causes oxidative stress. The excess sugar then encourages the production of free radicals. These radicals or unstable oxygen molecules bring about tissue damage. There is inflammation when there are more of them as compared to antioxidants.
Weight gain. A person may turn heavier due to the repeated intake of certain food additives. Consumption of them can cause hormonal changes. Such can trigger the body to have a metabolic response to eating more food. Having more calories and macronutrients often leads to more fat deposits. Excess fats put pressure on tissues plus make them inflamed and dysfunctional.
- Arthritis, both rheumatoid and osteo types, often result from inflammation.
- Multiple Sclerosis and similar diseases are thought to have a strong correlation with inflammation.
Mental health issues. Preservatives or food enhancers may cause diseases when taken more often than not. Having sickness may let a person feel troubled, worried, and down. Problems such as stress, anxiety, and depression lead to general inflammation. This is because these conditions may program the mind of a person to be self-destructive. That is to say, the body may attack itself when feeling bad.
- Heart Disease, Stroke, and similar circulatory issues often result from chronic inflammation.
- Dementia, including Alzheimer’s, is thought to be strongly influenced by inflammation.
Knowing what foods increase inflammation helps your overall health
It pays to know the specific additives or what foods increase inflammation. This is so you would be aware of which ones to avoid. But you learning to reduce your consumption of them is a good way to start too. It may not be possible for you to stop your intake of them right away.
Read the food labels and do some research. These will guide you in eating right and keeping yourself safe. Check the ingredients and additives. They should be where the majority of the nutritional information of a product is.
Try to eat healthier by going for organic goods. But read about what fruits and vegetables to avoid or moderate your intake of too. This is so you would stay healthy while enjoying your food.
Our Take Away on what foods increase inflammation
Inflammation is a hot topic in the health world these days, and for good reason. It’s been linked to everything from heart disease to cancer, Alzheimer’s, and autoimmune diseases. While inflammation is a natural process that helps our bodies fight infection and heal injuries, too much of it can be harmful. In this post, we looked at some common foods that increase inflammation and offered some tips on how to avoid them. We also shared some substitution ideas for those of you who might not want to give up your favorite inflammatory food entirely. Have you tried any of these substitutions? Leave us a comment below, or head over to our Facebook page and let us know!