Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Blog #16 Cooling Chronic Inflammation

                                                               Cooling Chronic Inflammation
During the last couple of decades, medical scientific literature has increasingly blamed inflammation – the body’s inflammatory response of swelling, redness, heat and/or pain for many of humanity’s physical ailments.  Certain kinds of inflammation, such as fevers which destroy bacterial overgrowth, are desirable, but most types of inflammation are considered destructive.  Examples of conditions driven by chronic inflammation are sleep apnea, arthritis, especially rheumatoid, inflammatory, and gout, atherosclerosis, acne, allergies, celiac disease, many autoimmune illnesses, including lupus, MS, Graves disease, scleroderma and psoriasis, chronic prostatitis, pelvic inflammatory disease, endometriosis, interstitial cystitis, duodenal and gastric ulcers, inflammatory bowel disease, including Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, depression, type 2 diabetes, and cancer.   
Inappropriate, chronic inflammation involves the body’s over-reaction to a threat or imbalance such as aging, obesity, mental or emotional stress, toxicity, chronic infection, and nutritional deficiency.  Although we cannot individually control some of these threats, such as aging or air pollution, other factors are well within our control.  Fortunately, nutrition is a controllable factor for many people, once they know what foods are pro-inflammatory and what foods help counteract inflammation. 

               Inflammatory                                                           Anti-inflammatory or Neutral
refined sugars, including white or brown sugar,          raw honey, maple syrup, blackstrap molasses
corn syrup, agave nectar, artificial sweeteners, in       stevia       
aspartame, saccharin, sucralose
high omega-6 oils, including peanut, corn, soy,           high omega-3 or balanced oils: olive, flax seed
safflower, grape seed, walnut, sesame, wheat germ    avocado, coconut, macadamia, wild-caught fish
canola, margarine, farmed fish                                         
fried foods, especially deep-fried, grilled,                   boiled, steamed, poached, raw, braised,
barbequed,                                                               juiced, foods baked at low heat, broiled      
meats and poultry: grain-fed, processed,                   100 % grass-fed, organically raised meats and
high-fat, factory-fed, and feedlot                               poultry
most dried fruit, some canned and frozen fruit            fresh, organically raised fruit, raw, juiced, cooked at
                       low temperatures
seeds and nuts:  rancid, fried, roasted, salted             organically raised, raw, unsalted in small quantities
vegetables: sprayed, GMO, cooked as above           vegetables: raw, cooked using above methods         
 -                                                                              non-GMO, pesticide free, especially cruciferous and                                                                                                                                                      
 -                                                                              leafy greens                 
refined, sprayed, or GMO grains, all flours                occasional whole organic, non-GMO grains
large amounts of legumes and beans                          occasional organic, non-GMO legumes and beans
refined table salt                                                        high quality unrefined sea salt Himalayan salt,                                     
                                                                                sea vegetables                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          
alcohol, especially hard liquor and beer                      wine – high quality, in small quantities
in large amounts, over time
commercial milk, cream, cheese, cow milk                 organic or grass-fed plain unsweetened yogurt,
   -                                                                            cottage cheese, goat, sheep dairy products 
commercial eggs                                                        high omega-3 eggs, from free-range poultry
commercial teas                                                         pesticide-free teas
commercial coffee                                                     coffee:  organically raised, fresh ground, black,
-                                                                                     unsweetened, one  to two cups/day
-                                                                                     herbs:  ginger and turmeric root , boswellia
-                                                                                     supplements: high quality multi, highly absorbable         
-                                                                                     magnesium, Vitamin D3, pro-biotic supplements or
-                                                                                     foods i.e. yogurt, raw sauerkraut, raw fermented miso
This list is not exhaustive (though some may find it exhausting) but it is a good beginning.  Usually, it is not possible to adhere to this kind of nutritional program perfectly, nor is it usually necessary to do so, except in rare cases.  Keep in mind that other lifestyle changes in addition to improved nutrition may be necessary to maximize chances of partial or complete recovery from inflammation-driven illness.  Stress management, appropriate exercise, sufficient sleep and rest, meaningful social connections and networks, creative outlets, and more may be important components of treatment.  Below are two links which address the biochemical processes and effective medical management of chronic inflammation.  The specific condition addressed in the first link is sleep apnea.

This month’s offer:  feel free to call or email me with specific questions regarding this article.  Also, if you bring in a week’s food diary I will help you develop a specific diet with recipes for $50.00.  Feel free to share this blog with others.