However, "chronic" inflammation is a whole other story. When there is a constant production of immune cells that are never "shut off", they can do permanent damage. This permanent damage leads to cancer, heart disease, arthritis and Alzheimer's disease, among other health concerns. When our "inflammation system" doesn't switch off, we end up in big trouble.
The causes of chronic inflammation can vary from person to person, but causes can include being overweight, dealing with lots of stress, lifestyle choices, smoking, diet, lack of exercise, and lack of sleep to name a few.
The foods we choose to eat--or not to eat-- can also affect inflammation. Eating lots of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, and omega-3 fatty acids have shown to have ANTI-inflammatory effects. Your diet can serve as a PROTECTIVE function. When our bodies are nourished with the right foods, we are able to heal quicker. No one food is to blame for causing inflammation, but your overall diet can certainly contribute.
The following foods should be avoided to keep inflammation and illness at bay:
TRANS FATS: These are one of the worst foods you can eat. Anything that says hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils--this does damage to the cells in the lining of blood vessels according to the Mayo Clinic. If you read hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oil on the label---PUT IT BACK...DO NOT BUY IT!!
WHITE BREAD: White bread and pastas break down quickly into sugar and in turn lead to inflammation
CHEESEBURGERS: Animal fats are linked to inflammation
ALCOHOL: When alcohol is "over-consumed" it allows bacteria to easily pass through the intestinal lining leading to irritation and inflammation.
MILK: Whole milk and 2% milk are high in saturated fat--overdoing it causes inflammation
MSG: Remember, MSG is commonly found in Chinese foods as well as other places.
GLUTEN: When avoiding gluten, bloating and indigestion tends to disappear.
So, that delicious looking baked good at the top of the page probably has trans fats, white flour and sugar baked right into it. Knowing how much havoc that can cause in your body, it's not worth the few minutes of "tasting good"....instead, reach for that big, juicy apple that gives ammunition to those immune fighting cells!