The 10 worst inflammatory foods you should avoid


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The 10 worst inflammatory foods you should avoid

We are an inflamed society and have the disease statistics to prove it!

Chronic inflammatory conditions like heart disease, cancer, and autoimmune diseases are responsible for 7 out of 10 deaths in the US each year.

It’s easy to see why inflammation is so widespread—some of the common sources of inflammation include:

  • Stress
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Certain medications (such as statins)
  • Poor sleep
  • Infections or viruses
  • Being overweight or obese
  • Lacking exercise

But the biggest source of inflammation is our DIETS!

Here are the 10 worst inflammatory foods that you should avoid at all cost, and how you can help reduce chronic inflammation safely and naturally.

1- Sugar and high-fructose corn syrup

Sugar can stir up inflammation in your arteries, increasing your risk of heart disease.  Plus sugar is nourishment for cancer cells. 

Especially dangerous is high fructose corn syrup.  Your liver must break down all of the fructose you eat (versus only 20 percent of the glucose), so consuming HFCS puts a tremendous strain on your liver. 

As such, HFCS has been linked to fatty liver disease, as well as obesity, insulin resistance, diabetes, cancer and chronic kidney disease. 

Plus HFCS doesn’t get “burned up” for energy—it turns into fatty acids, excess cholesterol, and triglycerides—all risks for heart disease.

2- Refined carbohydrates

Unlike good carbs like fresh vegetables and whole grains, refined carbohydrates have little nutritive value and turn to sugar upon digestion.  This makes them no different than #1 above.

Plus refined carbs have been shown to trigger inflammation in the gut, increasing your risk of inflammatory bowel disease.

Refined carbohydrates include breads, rolls, pastries, cakes, cookies, bagels, muffins, crackers, snack chips, pizza dough and pasta.

[[big]]3- Vegetable oils

Vegetable oils are unstable and are very prone to damage by oxidation.  When heated they form dangerous compounds similar to deadly trans-fats. 

Plus vegetable oils promote inflammation due to their high Omega-6 fatty acid content. 

Your body needs both (inflammatory) Omega-6 fats and (anti-inflammatory) Omega-3 fats.  The problem with most people is they get way too many Omega-6 fats in their diets and not enough Omega-3s.  This causes an imbalance in these fats which favor inflammation. 

4- MSG

Monosodium glutamate (MSG) is a flavor-enhancer most commonly found in prepared Asian food and soy sauce, but it can also be added to fast foods, soups and soup mixes, salad dressings and deli meats.

MSG can trigger two important pathways of chronic inflammation, plus affect your liver health.

5- Factory farmed meats

Instead of being allowed to freely graze in pastures rich in anti-inflammatory Omega-3 essential fatty acids, factory farmed animals are instead fed a grain diet which is high in inflammation-stirring Omega-6

6- Gluten

Due to hybridization, we have created a gluten molecule that is more inflammatory than previous varieties.  

In addition, the amount of gluten in our wheat is nearly double what it was just 50 years ago.  Gluten is a very dense, sticky protein that is inherently hard to digest—and now our bodies must deal with a lot more of it, and a more inflammatory version of it. 

7- Margarine

Margarine is made with polyunsaturated vegetable oils.  During the manufacturing process, the oils are heated, creating dangerous disease-causing compounds like I mentioned in #3 above. 

Plus contrary to what the labels claim, many margarines still contain trans-fats.

8- Soda

Soda is the most acidic liquid you can drink, with a pH of about 2.3 – 2.5.  Compare that to battery acid which is 1.0! 

Your body has 2 acid defenses—it can neutralize them or expel them.  However, when it is inundated with too much acid day in and day out it can become overwhelmed. 

And an excess of acid wastes in your body over and above what it can handle causes inflammation.  

9- Processed foods

Processed foods provide little to no nutrients, they create loads of acid wastes in your body and they typically contain refined grains, sugar and/or trans-fats.   

In addition, most (non-organic) processed foods are made with GMO ingredients, and the company does not have to disclose that fact on the label.

10- Artificial sweeteners

Studies have linked sugar substitutes to cancer, brain damage and premature delivery in pregnant women, insulin sensitivity, retinal damage and blindness, nerve pain, muscle weakness and memory lapses, to name a few.

Plus they alter your gut microbiome, increasing your risk of inflammatory immune responses.

Natural ways to help fight inflammation

In addition to avoiding the inflammatory foods mentioned above, here are 3 ways to put the power of natural health to work against inflammation in your body:

1) Help keep your body alkaline

Your body is meant to be slightly alkaline and you can help keep it that way with your diet.

Alkaline foods include most vegetables (other than potatoes and corn).  Try to make at least half of your plate vegetables, and eat a big tossed salad every day.

What you drink matters too.  So if Ronald Reagan was President the last time you drank anything but coffee, alcohol, soda or Red Bull, it’s time to change that.  Strive to drink at least eight 8-oz. glasses of filtered water a day.

2) Get enough Omega-3 essential fatty acids

Omega-3 EFAs are Nature’s anti-inflammatory, but most people don’t get enough of them in their diets.

In addition to eating fatty fish, a fish oil supplement like VitalMega-3 can help make sure your body is getting what it needs.

VitalMega-3 contains 1,200 mg of Omega-3 EFAs in every 2-capsule serving, including 600 mg EPA and 400 mg DHA—the “golden stars” of Omega-3s.

3) Exercise regularly

Studies show that exercise has powerful effects in reducing inflammation, which in turn can significantly lower your cancer risk, among other things.  Plus exercise shrinks fat cells, which automatically fights inflammation by calming your body's immune system.

Just be sure to get your doctor’s OK first.

Get busy reducing inflammation now and see how much better you can feel!

To your health,

Sherry Brescia

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  • Hello Pauline,

    Thank you so much for reaching out and our sincere apologies for not seeing your comment sooner!

    We are so appreciative of your kind words and are happy to help in any way we can. We’re thrilled that you were able to stop your acid reflux!

    With regards to your friend who suffered with psoriasis, Sherry has said this:

    What your body may be trying to tell you:
    Your immune system is mixed-up and attacking you.
    Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease, meaning that your body sees its own cells as enemies and wages war against itself. Your immune system strikes out against your healthy cells, harming your tissues, stirring up inflammation and eventually causing impairment or loss of normal bodily functioning.
    There are presently between 80-100 autoimmune diseases identified so far. People with one autoimmune disease are far more likely to develop another autoimmune challenge.
    How to help:
    Stress is a trigger for psoriasis so stress management is key to help reduce flare ups. Yoga, meditation, hypnosis and prayer are some options. Of course, it is crucial to identify stressors in your life and find ways to address them.
    With regards to diet, psoriasis can be improved by reducing acidity and ensuring better digestion through food combining. We teach this in Great Taste No Pain. When food is not digested properly, the walls of the colon can become porous and “leak” undigested proteins and fat into the bloodstream, causing the allergic response that can lead to skin irritations such as psoriasis. We’ve attached the free start-up guide for food combining to the email we just sent you. We hope he will consider it!
    Probiotic supplementation has been shown to help address the overzealous immune system reactions associated with autoimmune conditions—and Super Shield multi-strain probiotic formula is as good as it gets.
    One of Super Shield’s strains, Lactobacillus Rhamnosus, has been shown to have a beneficial impact on autoimmune conditions as well as constipation, diarrhea and IBS symptoms. Additionally, Super Shield’s 12 other superstar strains will help keep your gut flora in proper balance and encourage the formation of more anti-inflammatory immune cells.

    Sherry has also written about diabetes here:

    Please share this information with him at your convenience. We hope you’ll let us know if either of you have any other questions!

    Melanie at Holistic Blends on

  • Hi.. I had lost your page due to change of PC.. SO glad to find this to reconnect with you. A long time ago I suffered with awful acid and your advice cured me of it.. so I TRUST YOU IMPLICITLY !.. I have a friend who for years has suffered awful psoriasis.. can you advise on this please.. It is really bad.. he also has diabetes.. if that makes any difference to your advice ? HELP please as you did for me years ago.. thank you in anticipation.. pauline x x x

    pauline perrins on

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