Do you know one of the first thing that happens for most people when they start to cut out processed foods and add in more Whole Foods (veggies, fruits, proteins, etc.)?
Aches and pains go away!
Pains you have gotten used to – a sore knee, a tight low back, etc. – sometimes just seem to disappear!
Simply making a slight change in your lifestyle or everyday diet can have a HUGE payoff.
I’m talking inflammation!
There are a lot of foods out there that can increase inflammation in your body.
And as you probably already know, inflammation is linked with aches & pains (especially if you have arthritis), but also obesity, diabetes, and a long list of other diseases.
I’ve put together a list of foods that are directly tied to inflammation, according to the Arthritis Foundation.
- Sugar. Processed sugars can trigger the release of inflammatory messengers in your body called cytokines.
- Trans fats. These can cause systemic inflammation. Even though they’re banned, trans fats can still be found in fast foods and some processed items. Check ingredient labels and avoid items with partially hydrogenated oils.
- Omega 6 fatty acids. Your body needs a healthy balance of omega 3s and 6s, but most of us get way too much of the 6s, which can lead to inflammation.
They’re found in salad dressings, mayo, and many vegetable and seed oils like corn, safflower, sunflower, grapeseed, soy, and peanut.
- Refined carbs, aka “white” carbs. White flour, rice, pasta, bread, crackers, cereal, etc. can spike your blood sugar and lead to inflammation.
- Alcohol. Studies show the more alcohol people consume, the higher their level of inflammatory markers in their bodies.
- Processed meats. The methods used to prepare these meats create AGEs (advanced glycation end-products), which are linked to inflammation.
Some people also find they get aches and pains from foods they are sensitive to, like gluten, dairy, and even some vegetables.
I’m not suggesting that you go on a big kick and throw out all of those foods. That can be hard to sustain.
But sometimes making just one or two changes can start you on the road toward feeling your absolute best.
And that’s the goal – to live life fully, knowing we are doing whatever we can to prevent disease, eat well and move well, so we feel well, longer.
What one change can you start making? I’d love to hear!