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The Top Foods That Lead To Inflammation–Avoid These At All Costs

The Top Foods That Lead To Inflammation–Avoid These At All Costs

If you’re looking to improve your overall health and fitness level, definitely consider all the inflammatory foods you may be consuming.

Inflammation is a big problem in today’s world. While inflammation does assist with the healing process if you suffer an acute injury, too much inflammation is not a good thing. You could be suffering from chronic levels of inflammation. This type of inflammation is very likely to lead to a whole host of diseases, such as heart disease, cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, and many others.

By taking the time to learn which foods are most likely to cause inflammation in the body, you can ensure that you won’t be suffering.

Let’s go over the list of inflammatory foods:

Processed Foods

The first type of food that you should absolutely avoid at all costs is the processed sort. These foods are loaded with artificial sweeteners, chemicals, as well as other additives that are just not going to position you for optimal health.

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In addition, for those who are suffering from any type of gluten insensitivity, processed foods will often cause symptoms to flare up due to a high amount of refined flour or wheat-based ingredients.

If it comes in a package, avoid it.

Meat

Meat is the next food that you should be careful about. Choosing grass-fed beef makes this less of an issue, but if you’re eating grain-fed beef, especially beef that’s been injected with hormones, you’re inviting chronic inflammation.

A far better protein choice is fish. Fish lowers the amount of inflammation in the body. It also contains healthy fats that help to fight off inflammation, entirely.

Trans Fats

Trans fats should definitely be avoided. These fats are man-made, and unnatural for the human body. They cause ill-health.

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These fats are often found in processed and manufactured foods, so if you want to see optimal results from your diet, you’re best off staying away.

If you want a simple and quick way to instantly boost your health, choosing only foods that come straight from the ground or are caught in the wild is the way to do it.

Artificial Sweeteners

Artificial sweeteners should be deleted out of your diet plan, entirely. These man-made ingredients are not designed to be digested or broken down by your body.

Some research claims that certain artificial sweeteners don’t pose a health threat, but you still need to ask yourself if you really want to put something unnatural in your body.

Treat your body like you would a brand new sports car. Would you put low grade fuel in a sports car? Hopefully not, so why put in low grade fuel in your body?

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You can buy a new sports car, but you only get one body.

Dairy Products

For many people, dairy products can also be linked to increased inflammation, so you’ll need to assess your tolerance.

If you eat dairy and suffer from bloating, gas, intestinal distress, or any other negative side effects, this could indicate that you are sensitive to lactose. In this case, it would be best to cut dairy from your diet, entirely.

Additionally, many dairy products we consumed on a daily basis are filled with hormones, antibiotics, as well as artificial sweeteners, so there again, that’s a strong reason to avoid them.

What Left to Eat?

So now that you know some of the biggest offenders when it comes to inflammation, what should you be eating? What will set you up for greater health, and put a stop to inflammation entirely? Let’s look at some of the anti-inflammatory foods to be eating.

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Dark Leafy Greens

You can’t beat dark, leafy greens when it comes to the health benefits they offer. Rich in nutrients, high in antioxidants, and a great way to combat inflammation, make sure that you get these in.

Flaxseed

Flaxseed is another food that’s great for fending off inflammation due to its high omega-3 content. Most people consume too many omega-6 fats in their diet, consuming flaxseed helps balance out your diet.

Flaxseed

    Blueberries

    Any berry, but especially blueberries, are ideal for fending off inflammation. These help combat high levels of stress in the body, and can also boost brain and mental health. Blueberries are rich in antioxidants. You can’t go wrong with berries in your diet.

    Cruciferous Vegetables

    Cruciferous vegetables include broccoli, cabbage, and cauliflower. These vegetables are low in calories and easy to add to your diet plan.

    Avocados

    Rich in healthy fats and antioxidants, this food is also great for fending off inflammation. Those who get enough healthy fats in their diet will notice healthier skin, hair, and nails–yet another reason to consume this in abundance.

    Now, you have the key points about inflammation and how to fight it. Choose your diet wisely, and you’ll start gaining control over your chronic inflammation.

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    Last Updated on October 5, 2020

    Intermittent Fasting Weight Loss (The Ultimate Weight Loss Hack)

    Intermittent Fasting Weight Loss (The Ultimate Weight Loss Hack)

    Intermittent fasting weight loss is a type of diet that’s rapidly growing in popularity and becoming the way to lose weight. Scientists and nutrition experts like it, too. New books and articles on the topic are being published daily. Intermittent fasting is also popular with followers of the Paleo diet since our ancestors appear to have eaten this way for thousands of years.

    I’ve been following this type of diet myself for 2 years. Doing so helped me lose and keep off 70 pounds without ever having to count calories, limit carbohydrates, or eat 6 to 7 meals a day.

    This article teaches you all about intermittent fasting weight loss and details why it is one of the best weight loss diet hacks around. Once you finish, you will be able to implement into your diet and experience the benefits it offers almost immediately.

    What Is Intermittent Fasting?

    As you may have figured from its name, intermittent fasting weight loss is a diet plan where you set fasting periods during the day. This is usually between 16-20 consecutive hours, but it can be as little as 12 hours or as much as 24 hours (or even 36 hours).

    While fasting you can eat and drink low calorie or calorie-free foods. Think coffee, tea, water, and vegetables.

    The more time you spend fasting every day, the better your results. You can do these fasts as often as you like. Again, the more often you do so, the better[1].

    Getting Started With Intermittent Fasting

    Following this diet plan is super simple. All you have to do is choose a period of time during the day that you will fast. This should be between 16-20 hours.

    The longer you fast each day, the better. Don’t worry about calorie restriction or measuring carbohydrates. Just focus on going about your day until it’s time to eat.

    It’s best to choose a set period of time to conduct your fast. I like to fast from 8 PM to 4 PM the following afternoon. I’ll then have my first meal of the day and a snack or two a few hours later. Once 8 o’clock rolls around, it’s back to fasting.

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    My experience with intermittent fasting is that it’s best to start with a 16 hour fast (i.e. 8PM one evening to 12PM the next day) for the first 1-2 weeks. Once you are comfortable with this schedule, you can increase the amount of time you spend fasting. Do this by adding 30 minutes to each fast until you get to where you are fasting for 20 hours at a time.

    You don’t have to fast every day in the beginning either. You may be more comfortable breaking in slowly with 2 or 3 days per week, or trying alternate day fasting. Add additional days of intermittent fasting as you become more comfortable with this style of eating.

    Tips To Make Intermittent Fasting Easier

    1. Drink Plenty of Water

    Squeeze a little lemon or lime juice into your water to help get rid of any cravings you experience. You can also drink coffee, tea, or other calorie-free beverages. After a few weeks, you will find that intermittent fasting keeps you from craving sugar entirely.

    2. Take in Caffeine in the Morning and Early Afternoon

    The caffeine in coffee and tea may actually make intermittent fasting weight loss a little easier since it’s good for curbing your appetite. Be careful not to overindulge as this may lead to you feeling a little too wired. I also recommend these natural energy boosting tips to keep you going during the day.

    3. Avoid Artificially Flavored Drinks

    One type of calorie-free drink that should be avoided are diet sodas and other beverages that use artificial sweeteners like Splenda and Sweet & Low. Studies show that the can actually stimulate your appetite[2] like a drink that contains sugar and cause you to overeat.

    4. Don’t Gorge at Your First Meal

    The first meal after your fast should be the amount of food you typically eat. Binging will only make you feel awful and diminish the benefits you get from the fast.

    To avoid this, try creating meal plans, at least for the first few weeks. This will help you get into the rhythm of eating regularly portioned meals during your eating window.

    5. Minimize Processed Carbohydrates and Sugars

    While intermittent fasting does make it possible to eat a little looser than normal, you should still eat as little bread, pasta, rice, etc. as possible.

    Focus instead on eating protein from beef, fish, or pork, carbohydrates from vegetables, fruit, and sweet potatoes, and healthy fats from foods like almonds, avocados, fish, and olive oil.

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    You can find some carb sources that will aid your weight loss journey here.

    How Intermittent Fasting Helps You Lose Weight

    Eating this way has many benefits with regard to weight loss. The first is that when you’re fasting, your body will be forced to use its stored body fat for energy. Burning calories this way, instead of from the food you’re eating throughout the day, will help you experience significant weight loss, but specifically lose weight from any excess body fat you’re carrying.

    This means that you won’t just be thinner, but you will also look better and be much healthier than if you lose weight the old-fashioned way[3].

    Intermittent fasting can help optimize the release of the key fat-burning hormones in your body. This is especially true for the two most important hormones: human growth hormone (HGH) and insulin.

    Human growth hormone plays a key role in turning on your body’s fat-burning furnace so that it gets the calories you need to work and play from stored body fat. Studies show that fasting can significantly increase the production of HGH[4].

    The influence intermittent fasting weight loss has on insulin is just as impressive and possibly more important. Keeping your insulin levels low and steady is key to losing excess fat and keeping it off.

    Diets that are rich in processed carbohydrates (bread, pasta, rice) and simple sugars (candy, cookies, and soda) have the opposite effect. They cause your insulin levels to rapidly spike and then crash every time you eat one of these foods. The net result of this phenomenon is that your body will store more of what you eat as excess body fat instead of burning it off as energy.

    Chronically elevating your insulin levels like this can also lead to the development of type II diabetes, obesity, and other chronic health problems. Intermittent fasting easily solves this problem.

    One study found that men who participated in intermittent fasting had “dramatically lower insulin levels and significantly improved insulin sensitivity”[5].

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    This happens because you’re not giving your body food, so it will not produce insulin, allowing insulin levels to balance out until you eat again. This helps your body stay in a calorie and fa-burning state. You’ll also find that it gives you more energy throughout the day.

    Another great weight loss benefit of intermittent fasting is that hunger pangs and cravings that may normally plague you throughout the day will be reduced, if not altogether eliminated. This is probably due to its ability to balance your insulin and blood sugar levels and, in turn, help correct other hormonal imbalances.

    Intermittent Fasting Weight Loss FAQs

    Now that you know what intermittent fasting is and how to get started, it’s time to answer your other questions.

    Below are answers to the questions frequently asked about intermittent fasting. These answers should help you and make getting started a lot easier.

    How Much Weight Will I Lose?

    The amount of weight you lose with fasting is determined by how often and long your fasts are, what you eat afterward, and other factors. Fasting for 16-20 hours a day can help you safely lose 2-3 pounds of fat every week.

    While losing this much weight every week is great, it’s how it makes it happen that’s really cool. Losing weight with intermittent fasting means that you will never have to count calories or plan and prepare several meals a day.

    Can I Work out While Fasting?

    Yes, you can. In fact, doing the right type of workout while fasting will help you lose weight faster and even build muscle.

    The best workouts to do while fasting for weight loss are 3-4 intense strength training workouts weekly. This means anything from standard strength training to kettlebell or body weight workouts.

    Focus on doing 3-4 total body exercises per workout with as little rest as possible between sets. Doing this will help you burn more calories during and after your workout. You’ll also build muscle, which will help you look and feel better as the weight comes off.

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    Won’t I Lose Muscle When I Fast?

    First of all, you aren’t fasting long enough for your body to start breaking down muscle for energy. You have, perhaps, hundreds of thousands of calories from your stored body fat to use before that will begin to happen. Studies actually show that even after fasting for 3 days, no muscle is lost.

    Is Fasting Safe?

    As long as you are healthy, not pregnant, and aren’t taking medications, fasting is safe. Like all diets, you should discuss it with your doctor before beginning an intermittent fasting style of dieting.

    I also feel that it may not be smart to follow this type of diet when you’re especially stressed. Since this diet can be a little stress-inducing at first, doing so when your ability to be relatively stress-free and rested probably isn’t a good idea.

    Are There Any Supplements I Can Take to Make Fasting Easier?

    As with any other weight loss plan, it’s a good idea to take a few nutritional supplements to ensure that your daily requirements are met. This includes a once or twice daily multi-vitamin, fish oil, and vitamin D.

    I’ve also found taking 10 grams of branch chain amino acids before and after my workouts really helps, too. They’re great for giving you more energy during your workout and decreasing post-workout muscle soreness.

    For supplements to specifically help with digestion, check out this article.

    Conclusion

    Now you know what intermittent fasting is and how it can help you lose weight quickly, safely, and pretty much effortlessly.

    If you want to give it a try, find a fasting schedule that fits with you lifestyle and give it a go.

    More About Intermittent Fasting

    Featured photo credit: Toa Heftiba via unsplash.com

    Reference

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