Certain foods cause chronic pain by triggering inflammation throughout your body- bad news if you already suffer from fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, or rheumatoid arthritis. Find out which foods to avoid, in order to prevent chronic pain flare-ups.
The inflammation response
It’s normal to feel pain when you sustain an injury- inflammation is your body’s healthy response to the danger of infections, a broken rib, or even a cut finger.
It’s easy enough to spot a visible injury and treat it. But what about when chronic pain occurs as a result of inflammation that spreads inside your body, throughout your organs, muscles, and digestive system? Invisible sources of chronic pain can be much harder to detect.
Food and chronic pain
Sometimes, inflammation results from foods that we eat every day- foods that raise our blood sugar levels, trigger autoimmune reactions, and upset our natural biochemical functioning.
Don’t eat this!
The following food items are to be avoided, as they trigger an unhealthy inflammatory response. If you already suffer from chronic pain due to autoimmune disorders such as fibromyalgia, lupus, or pernicious anemia, then you should cross these foods off your list.
Check food label ingredients at the supermarket before you buy any packaged item, and don’t be afraid to ask at a restaurant if they use any of the following ingredients:
- Processed foods- If it doesn’t occur in nature, then your body doesn’t recognize it. When we eat processed foods containing artificial preservatives, food colorings, and other additives, your body reacts to the “foreign invader” by producing an inflammatory response that triggers symptoms of chronic pain.
- Refined sugar- this is a hard one to avoid, understandably. However, in many studies, refined starches like white sugar consistently cause chronic pain by elevating blood sugar and upsetting your body’s response to insulin.
- Dairy products- Our bodies were not meant to process the protein (casein) or sugar (lactose) from milk very well, and as a result a large number of people experience inflammation as a result of including milk, cheese, and cream in their diets.
- Gluten- For many people, gluten is a dangerous allergen that creates an inflammatory immune response. Gluten can be found in wheat, rye, and barley, in addition to many packaged condiments and snack foods.
- Trans-fat- Hydrogenated oils contain low-density lipoproteins (LDLs) that cause inflammation and trigger chronic pain.
- Peanuts- One of the most common food allergens, peanuts are coated with natural molds that may create inflammation, even in people who don’t suffer from peanut allergies.
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