Anti-inflammatory diet
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Anti-inflammatory diet



Dr. Lynch explains what anti-inflammatory foods are, how to identify and choose the best ones. Apply these suggestions to your life as an alternative to over the counter pain killers.

Dr. Lynch explains what anti-inflammatory foods are, how to identify and choose the best ones. Apply these suggestions to your life as an alternative to over the counter pain killers.



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Anti-inflammatory diet Anti-inflammatory diet Presentation Transcript

  • Anti-inflammatory Foods
    Shane J. Lynch, D.C.
  • Overview
    Historical diet versus modern diet
    Inflammatory and anti-inflammatory foods
  • Health
  • Inflammation
    Vasodialation of the local blood vessels
    Increased permeability of the capillaries
    Blood clotting at injured area
    Migration of white blood cells (immune cells) to injured area
    Swelling of affected tissue
    • Inflammation is a normal healthy response, but with chronic cases this can lead to injury of healthy surrounding tissue.
    Guyton AC & Hall JE. Textbook of Medical Physiology. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: Elsevier Saunders; 2006: 397.
  • Inflammation
  • Diseases and conditions caused or prompted by inflammation
    Rheumatoid arthritis
    Heart disease
    Peripheral vascular disease
    Parkinson’s disease
    Multiple sclerosis (MS)
    Alzhemier’s disease
    Generalized aches and pain
  • Historical eating patterns versus the modern diet
    Dairy products (10%), cereals (20%), refined sugars (20%), refined vegetable oils (20%), and alcohol make up 72.1% of the total daily energy consumed by all people in the United States, these types of foods would have contributed little or none of the energy in the typical preagriculturalhominin diet.
    Cordain L et al. Origins and evolution of the Western diet: health implications for the 21st century. Am J ClinNutr. 2005; 81(2):341-54.
  • Historical eating patterns versus the modern diet
    Human beings evolved consuming a diet that contained about equal amounts of n-3 and n-6 essential fatty acids. Over the past 100-150y there has been an enormous increase in the consumption of n-6 fatty acids due to increased intake of vegetable oils from corn, sunflower seeds, safflower seeds, cottonseed and soybeans. Today, in Western diets, the ratio of n-6 to n-3 fatty acids ranges from ~20-30:1 instead of the traditional range of 1-2:1.
    Simopoulos AP. Essential acids in health and chronic disease. Am J ClinNutr. 1999; 70 (suppl):560S-9S.
  • Foods with anti-inflammatory ratios
  • Foods with pro-inflammatory ratios
  • Inflammatory foods
    Those containing corn, sunflower, safflower, cottonseed, soybean and peanut oils.
    • This includes: salad dressings, mayonnaise, margarine, Crisco, cooking oils, potato chips, fried foods and many baked goods.
    Sugary foods and drinks, especially those with high fructose corn syrup.
    Grains, whole and especially refined
    • This includes breads, pastas, baked goods, pretzels, cereals, and many processed foods.
  • Anti-inflammatory foods
    Fruit and vegetables
    Lean meats/grass fed animal products (chicken, beef, eggs, etc.)
    Wild fish (i.e. not farm raised)
    Olive oil
  • Dietary modifications
    Olive oil and vinaigrette instead of salad dressing
    Olive oil, coconut oil or canola oil in place of other cooking oils
    Butter in place of margarine
    Rice pasta (no gluten) in place of regular pasta
    Spelt flour products (less gluten than regular wheat)
    Gluten free products
    Water and tea in place of energy and sugary drinks
    Stout beer or red wine in place of other alcoholic beverages
  • Grains
    Generally speaking there are two types: whole and refined.
    Refined grains include: white breads, white flour, pasta, white rice, hominy.
    Whole grains include: Wheat, oats, barley, spelt, brown rice, rye, maize, triticale, and sprouted grains.
    Refined grains have a high glycemic index meaning they cause a rapid increase in blood sugar and insulin levels and with time this can contribute to the development of type-2 diabetes.
    Whole grains have a lower glycemic index and are not suspected in the development of type-2 diabetes. Whole grains also contain fiber which is beneficial for the digestive system and for this reason some experts label whole grains as “anti-inflammatory”.
  • Grains and inflammation
    All grains (whole and refined) and rice contain: n-6 fatty acids and no n-3 fatty acids, lectins (block nutrient absorption and cause “leaky gut syndrome”), phytates (block absorption of mg and other minerals), acidic pH, glycemic regulation problems and no vit-C, A, B-12, β-carotene.
    Cordain L et al. Cereal grains: humanity’s double-edged sword. World Rev Nutr Diet. Basal, Karger, 1999, vol 84, pp 19-73.
  • Grains and gluten
    Wheat (spelt, kamut, triticale and semolina), rye and barley (including malt) contain gluten, which can cause neurological and digestive complications.
    Conditions and symptoms related to gluten sensitivity:
    • Celiac disease
    • Unexplained attacks of diarrhea
    • Headaches
    • Peripheral neuropathy (numbness and tingling in extremities)
    • Cerebellar ataxia
    • ADHD
    • Psychologic conditions (depression, aggravation of schizophrenic symptoms)
    • ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease)
    *Hadjivassiliou M et al. Gluten sensitivity as a neurological illness. J. Neurol. Neurosurg. Psychiatry 2002;72;560-563.
    ** Zelnik N et al. Range of neurological disorders in patients with celiac disease. Pediatrics 2004; 113:1672-76.
    ***Arnason JA et al. Do adults with high gliadin antibody concentrations have subclinical gluten intolerance? Gut 1992; 33: 194-197.
    **** Turner MR et al. A case of celiac disease mimicking amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Nature Clinical Practice Neurology 2007; 3: 581-584.
  • Supplements
    Fish or cod liver oil is a great form of n-3 (omega 3 fatty acids) and is commonly labeled as α-linolenic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA).
    • You can take this in a liquid or capsule form. 1 gram/day is the recommended amount.
    Lee JH et al. Omega-3 fatty acids: cardiovascular benefits, sources and sustainability. Nature Reviews Cardiology 2009; 6: 753-758.
  • Supplements
    Vitamin D can also help prevent the inflammatory response. Inadequate intake or lack of exposure to sunlight limit the quantity of vitamin D circulating in the body and can “cause muscle aches, muscle weakness, and bone pain at any age”.1 The current Tolerable Upper Intake Level (UL) for vitamin D (50 µg/d, or 2000 IU) established by the Food and Nutrition Board (FNB) “is not based on current evidence and is viewed by many as being too restrictive…the absence of toxicity in trials conducted in healthy adults that used vitamin D dose ≥250 µg/d (10 000 IU vitamin D3) support the confident selection of this value as the UL”.2 Those with “certain health conditions such as sarcoidosis and Mycobacterium infections, and those treated with thiazide diuretics are reported to be extremely sensitive to excessive vitamin D”2, and should check with their physician before supplementing with this vitamin.
    “Chronic exposure to sunlight in outdoor workers at the end of summer season produce serum 25(OH)D (i.e. vitamin D) concentrations equivalent to those with an oral intake of 70-125 µg vitamin D/day”.2
    “…long term vitamin D production from sun exposure is unlikely to exceed ≈ 125 µg/d in North America and Europe”.2
    “…ordinary dietary sources usually provide ≈ 2.5 µg vitamin D/day, but can go as high as 5 to 10 µg with the use of fortified foods”.2
    Fortified milk, fish liver oil, butter, egg yolks, liver.1
    Our main source of vitamin D is from ultraviolet irradiation of the skin (i.e. exposure to sunlight).
    Best form of vitamin D supplementation is cholecalciferol (vitamin D3).2
    1 Beers, MH et al. The Merck Manual of Diagnosis and Therapy. Whitehouse Station, New Jersey: Merck Research Labatories; 2006. 42, 29.
    2 Hathcock JN et al. Risk assessment for vitamin D1,2. Am J ClinNutr2007; 85:6-18.
  • Resources
    For more information regarding this topic and additional nutrition tips I recommend the website