Your immune system is like a home security system and inflammation is the alarm. An alarm or what is known as inflammation, is triggered whenever the system detects an invader.
In your body’s case, that invader can be anything from a an allergic reaction to pollen or a bruised knee. In a functioning system, your immune system will eventually disarm the alarm.
What is included in your daily meal plan may not only increase inflammation, but it can also set you up for other chronic conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, obesity. Here are 7 food ingredients that may trigger more inflammation present in your body.
Aspartame is a non-nutritive, intense artificial sweetener that is present in more than 4,000 products worldwide. Though approved by the FDA, studies on its effects are mixed, and the impact on individuals with autoimmune disease are unknown.
If you are sensitive to this chemical, your immune system may react to the “foreign substance”, by attacking the chemical, which will trigger an inflammatory response.
2. Food Additives
Food additives include all unnatural products that are added to your food to increase its shelf life, change the flavour and reduce the cost. Unnatural and chemicals products in your food will contribute to inflammation, because it is not recognizable and the immune system will create a response. These include preservatives, artificial sweeteners, artificial flavours and colours.
MSG has been shown to increase the development of significant inflammation, type 2 diabetes amd central obesity. Also, it has been reported to promote NASH (Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis) or liver inflammation.
The liver is your most important metabolic organ, therefore, an unhealthy liver in itself is correlated to systemic inflammation in the body.
4. Omega 6 Fatty Acids
Omega 6 fatty acids are essential fatty acid that your body needs for normal development and growth. Your body needs a healthy balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.
Excess consumption of omega-6s can trigger your body to produce pro-inflammatory chemicals. These fatty acids are present in oils such as safflower, corn, grapeseed, sunflower, peanut, soy, mayonnaise, vegetable and many salad dressings.
5. Refined Carbohydrates
White refined flour has a negative and fast effect on blood sugar, and it is known for its pro-inflammatory effects. Foods that have a high glycemic index or (GI), were linked to be associated with higher levels of CRP in the Harvard Women’s Health Study.
The relationship between inflammation and GI has been confirmed in other studies. It is important that many wholegrain products still contain a large amount of refined grains to make the product tastier.
It is hard to resist pastries, desserts, sodas, chocolate bars, even fruit juices. But, the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition warns that processed sugars can trigger the release of inflammatory messengers known as cytokines.
Sugar goes by many names, therefore, look out for any word ending in “ose,” e.g. sucrose or fructose on ingredient labels.
7. Trans Fats
Harvard School of Public Health studies reported about trans fat in the early 1990’s. Known to trigger systemic inflammation, trans fat are present in fried products, fast foods, frozen breakfast products, processed snack foods, donuts, cookies, most stick margarines and crackers. Avoid foods that contain partially hydrogenated oils in the ingredient labels.