What Contributes to a “Pro Inflammatory” Lifestyle?

1. High-sugar foods: Immunosuppression for 2-4 hours after eating

2. High-fat foods: Especially foods with arachidonic acid and saturated fats (dairy and animal fat primarily)

3. Food Allergens: Allergens may form immune complexes and lead to inflammation

4. Foods that promote bacterial overgrowth of the small bowel: Simple sugars and complex carbs quickly digested such as refined white flour and white potatoes

5. Insufficiency of fiber: Fiber pulls toxins from the GI tract and acts like a broom to sweep them out

6. Insufficient phytonutrients: Phytonutrients primarily found in fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds act as anti-inflammatories and antioxidants, which quench inflammation

7. Insufficient exercise: 1) Adipose tissue (fat) is pro-inflammatory; 2) Exercising muscle reduces inflammation improves insulin sensitivity

8. Vitamin D deficiency: Causes inflammation, promotes autoimmunity, and expedites progression of osteoarthritis

9. Fatty acid imbalances: Insufficiencies of Omega-3 and -6 fats, along with excesses of saturated fat and trans-fats lead to inflammation

10. Vitamin and mineral deficiencies: Especially magnesium, deficiency of which is seen in 20-40% of most “industrialized” populations.

11. Xenobiotic/toxin accumulation: Non-specific but can lead to inflammation and is an under-diagnosed problem

12. Emotional stress and toxic relationships: Promote inflammation, impair wound healing, and promote immunosuppresion

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