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Top 12 Foods that Cause Inflammation

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Top 12 Foods that Cause Inflammation

Everyday foods like bacon, eggs, coffee and dairy products are linked to inflammation. That might not sound like a big deal but when you consider that most chronic conditions like cancer, arthritis, diabetes, and obesity have been linked to inflammation. Low grade inflammation is a factor in most health issues.  And if you suffer a pain disorder, you better believe that inflammatory foods will aggravate the condition.

Try reducing your consumption of these foods with the goal of eliminating them completely. The same holds true for alcohol and fried foods – both of these have been known to irritate and worsen arthritis

Many common foods in the Standard North American Diet can cause or exacerbate inflammation in the body.

Here are my picks for the top 12 inflammatory foods:

1.  What I call the “3 Ps”–Processed, packaged, or prepared foods. And, yes, fast food is atop the list of inflammatory foods thanks to the harmful oils, sugar and artificial sweeteners, food additives, and a whole host of nasty ingredients.

2.  Hydrogenated and trans fats found in margarine, shortening, lard or products made with them. That includes baked goods, cookies, pies, buns. Of course there are healthier alternatives to these baked goods but most grocery stores and bakeries are using these harmful ingredients.

3.  Meat (not wild-caught fish). I’m not suggesting that you have to go vegan or vegetarian here although a plant-based diet tends to be much lower in inflammatory substances but meat and poultry tend to cause inflammation so make them the background of your meals not the main dish.

Keep reading to discover more inflammatory foods…

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Michelle Schoffro Cook

Michelle Schoffro Cook, MSc, RNCP, ROHP, DNM, PhD is an international best-selling and 17-time book author and board-certified doctor of natural medicine, whose works include: 60 Seconds to Slim, Weekend Wonder Detox, Healing Recipes, The Vitality Diet, Allergy-Proof, Arthritis-Proof, Total Body Detox, The Life Force Diet, The Ultimate pH Solution, The 4-Week Ultimate Body Detox Plan, and the upcoming book The Probiotic Promise. Subscribe to her free e-magazine World's Healthiest News at to receive monthly health news, tips, recipes and more. Follow her on Twitter @mschoffrocook and Facebook.


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1:50AM PST on Dec 29, 2014


12:33AM PST on Dec 10, 2014


12:32AM PST on Dec 10, 2014


8:36PM PDT on Oct 9, 2014

Avoid alcohol, carbonated beverages, fried anything, & start the day with living enzymes (fresh fruit & vegs) and whey protein powder in a blender. WHAT YOU EAT AT ONE MEAL DETERMINES YOUR CRAVING. Go to Over eaters Anonymous which is free and good 12 - step awareness spiritually anyway.

7:35PM PDT on Oct 9, 2014

A well-balanced diet employing moderation is the way to go. One can eat many of these items if using moderation.

Interesting about wheat, certainly GMO is something to beware of and the more highly refined wheat is, such as white flour, the best it is to avoid and use alternatives. There is a lot of HFCS in many drinks such as pop/soda. I avoid anything that is factory farmed, when it comes to meat and dairy, but moderate amounts of many foods is a good idea.

Certainly, a lot of the highly processed foods available in a box, etc., are best avoided, especially those filled with numerous additives.

2:10AM PDT on Oct 9, 2014


3:47AM PDT on Jul 5, 2014


1:49PM PDT on Apr 28, 2014

Thanks for the information. These are foods worth staying away from or consuming in great moderation.

1:40PM PDT on Apr 28, 2014

Actually Wheat is one grain that does not contain GMOs. It is CORN products that contain GMOs and should be avoided. Some form of CORN is in most processed, packaged and prepared foods, including sugar, unless labelled "cane sugar" and beef, unless it's grass-fed. Study up on this. If you continue to buy unhealthy foods, manufacturers will continue to poison us.

6:59PM PST on Nov 17, 2013


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Thanks for the reminder.

Not to mention the carrot is totally awesomely delicious.


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