Author Topic: Anti Inflammation Diet  (Read 3130 times)

Luke Warm

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Anti Inflammation Diet
« on: October 10, 2022, 07:12:45 AM »
Does anyone have any recommendations for a book on anti inflammation diets? I'm starting to get some arthritis in my hands and I'm wondering if changing my diet might help. 

Metalcat

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Re: Anti Inflammation Diet
« Reply #1 on: October 10, 2022, 08:10:35 AM »
I would be cautious about books because the existing science on the effects of specific diets is TERRIBLE. It's not possible to study it properly so all of the science is kind of shit.

Your best bet is to run an n=1 experiment and do what has been done for many decades in these situations: do a structured elimination diet and write down a detailed log of what happens.

IMO, It is by far the most efficient and effective way to determine how your particular body is responding to specific types of food.

You may get lucky and stumble upon a specific anti-inflammatory theory that works for you the first time, but without an elimination diet, you still might be including some aggravating foods and not realizing it.

TreeLeaf

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Re: Anti Inflammation Diet
« Reply #2 on: October 10, 2022, 09:41:49 AM »
I would be cautious about books because the existing science on the effects of specific diets is TERRIBLE. It's not possible to study it properly so all of the science is kind of shit.

Your best bet is to run an n=1 experiment and do what has been done for many decades in these situations: do a structured elimination diet and write down a detailed log of what happens.

IMO, It is by far the most efficient and effective way to determine how your particular body is responding to specific types of food.

You may get lucky and stumble upon a specific anti-inflammatory theory that works for you the first time, but without an elimination diet, you still might be including some aggravating foods and not realizing it.

+1 to everything @Malcat  says here.

Diet and nutrition books are like the king of bullshit. Even a lot of the medical doctors and researchers disagree on things and there are often variables that are not controlled or thought of in the experiments.

I have read something around 30 books on the subject, mostly written by various medical doctors and researchers, and the only thing I can conclude about nutrition is to "Eat, not a lot, mostly plants. Drink water.". lol. That is the summary of thousands of pages of reading.

In my personal experimentation - inflammation was caused by excessive sugar intake and a seeming imbalance of omega 6 - omega 3 ratios. I reduced sugar intake and took fish oil for a while. Then I reduced my intake of most any saturated fat from animal products. But it's hard to say what is causing your inflammation or even if it can be resolved with diet changes.

Luke Warm

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Re: Anti Inflammation Diet
« Reply #3 on: October 10, 2022, 11:05:14 AM »
Excellent. I guess I was thinking that there was good science linking diet and inflammation. Sugar and wine are going to be tough to quit but even if they aren't the cause of the inflammation it will still be good for me in the long run.

ixtap

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Re: Anti Inflammation Diet
« Reply #4 on: October 10, 2022, 11:25:43 AM »
Ditto on the science part, and every book I have found will take time to explain lots of fuzzy science. But, my father did enjoy The Myer's Way when he was looking for an elimination diet (at least partly as a family joke ala, do what your wife tells you). Just don't be like him and skip the reintro part, then have to go in the super strict again and again because you never find your triggers.

When DH was struggling, we did something between the Myer's Way and Whole 30, including the elimination of nightshades. Good thing, too, since it turns out potatoes are not good for the man!

Ironically, for myself, once my system was used to the elimination phase, I did not react to a known trigger at reintroduction. Turns out, that does not mean I can go eat a big old spinach salad without consequences....
« Last Edit: October 10, 2022, 12:24:10 PM by ixtap »

Metalcat

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Re: Anti Inflammation Diet
« Reply #5 on: October 10, 2022, 12:05:15 PM »
Excellent. I guess I was thinking that there was good science linking diet and inflammation. Sugar and wine are going to be tough to quit but even if they aren't the cause of the inflammation it will still be good for me in the long run.

Kiiiiiind of, but only in that there are obvious culprits, and you already know them.

You don't need a book to tell you that alcohol directly damages every tissue it touches. Or, if you do, I'll just tell you now, alcohol damages all tissues it touches and because it gets into your bloodstream, it touches everything. Sugar is best conceptualized like any other ultra-processed food. You probably don't need a book to tell you that a diet heavy in ultra-processed foods is not ideal.

However, do you have a body that reacts to Nightshades? Dairy? Fruit? Legumes? Meat? Seed oils? Alliums (cooked or raw)? Gluten? Etc, etc.

My personal shit list of foods isn't delineated between "healthy" foods and "unhealthy" foods. It's kind of random. One of my worst culprits is fruit. That shit kills me, reliably makes me feel awful. Raw cruciferous aren't great either. Raw alliums??? Miserable. A single sliver of raw onion or garlic and I will have a bad day.

Meanwhile my sister is fine with everything I can't have, but dairy for her is monstrous. She either has a weird form of rosacea or she has Lupus, and dairy consistently makes her face rash horrible (note: we share no genetics, my genetic family are more similar to me).

So there are no books with generalized knowledge that can give you any wisdom for your specific case beyond: don't smoke, don't drink, don't eat a ton of ultra-processed food (sugar is an ultra processed food by itself). Otherwise, the rest is up to your unique, weird body.
« Last Edit: October 10, 2022, 12:27:50 PM by Malcat »

secondcor521

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Re: Anti Inflammation Diet
« Reply #6 on: October 10, 2022, 12:21:09 PM »
You asked about diet.  For me, gluten and sugar are problematic.

I think exercise can help with inflammation.  And lots of other things (mood, weight, cholesterol, etc.).  The exercise->inflammation may be an N=1 thing.

ixtap

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Re: Anti Inflammation Diet
« Reply #7 on: October 10, 2022, 12:29:21 PM »
I don't think we can stress how important it is to experiment on yourself. As you can see in this thread, many of us have issues with foods often touted as excellent anti inflammatories.

I will add that exercise, of the kind and intensity appropriate to you (may require additional experimentation), also does have a strong correlation to pain management.

TreeLeaf

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Re: Anti Inflammation Diet
« Reply #8 on: October 10, 2022, 12:30:42 PM »
Excellent. I guess I was thinking that there was good science linking diet and inflammation. Sugar and wine are going to be tough to quit but even if they aren't the cause of the inflammation it will still be good for me in the long run.

Well - Different diets have been linked to various chronic diseases in general, inflammation is just a tricky thing because our immune systems are one of those things that vary more from individual to individual than, say, a kidney or a heart. Your immune system can also vary throughout your life since it's dynamic to an extent as it learns to identify and respond to different pathogens.  It's easy to say what kind of diet is best for someone who is pre-diabetic or generally best for reducing your odds of getting heart disease. The keyword here is "reduce your odds".

The immune system is just impossible to recommend a specific diet for. I mean - I have met people who have immune responses to too much sunlight, or to grass, potatoes, nightshade vegetables, certain fruits, sugar, gluten, omega-6 to omega-3 ratios, various nuts, pollens...you will just have to use some sort of elimination diet to figure it out.

Of course it may not be diet related at all. My point isn't to not try - my point is to just be cautious with the idea that one diet works for all immune systems. Because it doesn't, imo.



Gronnie

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Re: Anti Inflammation Diet
« Reply #9 on: October 10, 2022, 03:21:26 PM »
You don't need to read a book on this.

Just eat nothing but beef and salt for a few weeks, then slowly add back in things and see if you react to any of them.

Luke Warm

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Re: Anti Inflammation Diet
« Reply #10 on: October 10, 2022, 03:25:44 PM »
You don't need to read a book on this.

Just eat nothing but beef and salt for a few weeks, then slowly add back in things and see if you react to any of them.

Slim Jim Diet?

ixtap

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Re: Anti Inflammation Diet
« Reply #11 on: October 10, 2022, 03:52:15 PM »
You don't need to read a book on this.

Just eat nothing but beef and salt for a few weeks, then slowly add back in things and see if you react to any of them.

Slim Jim Diet?

MIL insists beef is an issue for her, so we basically had fish and leafy greens for a few weeks. I let DH have eggs, too, but decided not to have them myself, even though I suspect every time eggs were an issue, spinach was involved, as well.

Oh, and lamb. We got in the habit of lamb at least once a week. Broke that habit when lamb was one of the first things to skyrocket during COVID :(
« Last Edit: October 10, 2022, 03:53:51 PM by ixtap »

Metalcat

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Re: Anti Inflammation Diet
« Reply #12 on: October 10, 2022, 03:54:12 PM »
You don't need to read a book on this.

Just eat nothing but beef and salt for a few weeks, then slowly add back in things and see if you react to any of them.

Slim Jim Diet?

MIL insists beef is an issue for her, so we basically had fish and leafy greens for a few weeks. I let DH have eggs, too, but decided not to have them myself, even though I suspect every time eggs were an issue, spinach was involved, as well.


Yeah, I forgot it in my list but beef is a BIG baddie for me. It was fine for years then in my early 30s BAM, beef became inedible literally from one day to the next.

I had to avoid it for about 5 years, now I can eat it on moderation, but I won't feel great after

getsorted

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Re: Anti Inflammation Diet
« Reply #13 on: October 10, 2022, 04:10:35 PM »
Developing a beef allergy is a pretty common after-effect of Lyme disease. I live in a Lyme zone and it seems like this particularly happens to older men for some reason.

Luke Warm

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Re: Anti Inflammation Diet
« Reply #14 on: October 11, 2022, 06:49:04 AM »
I had Lyme about 15 years ago. There's a whole wackadoodle world of snake oil about Lyme cures. I didn't have any real bad effects from the disease but the antibiotics wrecked me for a while. I had a lot of food sensitivities during that time. There is some thought that Lyme's Disease leads to arthritis but I don't know how real that is.

Metalcat

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Re: Anti Inflammation Diet
« Reply #15 on: October 11, 2022, 07:10:41 AM »
Developing a beef allergy is a pretty common after-effect of Lyme disease. I live in a Lyme zone and it seems like this particularly happens to older men for some reason.

I don't know if you were replying to me, but my issue was not an allergy. That was the first thing we looked at.

Metalcat

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Re: Anti Inflammation Diet
« Reply #16 on: October 11, 2022, 10:09:22 AM »
Developing a beef allergy is a pretty common after-effect of Lyme disease. I live in a Lyme zone and it seems like this particularly happens to older men for some reason.

I don't know if you were replying to me, but my issue was not an allergy. That was the first thing we looked at.

I would never try to give you medical suggestions! Just agreeing that beef is by no means a universally okay food. I know a lot of people who have had their gallbladders removed also report difficulty digesting beef.

@megaschnauzer , I am aware of the wackadoodle stuff, but beef allergy is a well-documented after-effect of tick bites. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/alpha-gal-syndrome/symptoms-causes/syc-20428608#:~:text=Alpha%2Dgal%20syndrome%20is%20a,gal%20into%20the%20person's%20body.

Some diseases just have the ability to fuck up the immune system in creative and inexplicable, but well-documented ways (see also: mononucleosis/glandular fever, which is a major risk factor fo autoimmune conditions).

lol, I didn't think so, but I thought I would address it in case it was directed at me, I didn't want to ignore you.

Don't worry, everyone and their cousin sent me articles about Lyme and beef allergy when it happened, because it happened right before all of those articles came out, and  I had talked about it a lot because I went from eating beef 3+ times a week to completely intolerant.

It's all meat now except seafood. If I eat meat a few days in a row, I get very, very sick and literally can't choke it back, it becomes to disgusting to me, like trying to eat Chinese food after getting food poisoning from it.

I went from being a hardcore meat eater to a mostly vegetarian pretty much overnight because my body said so.

Luke Warm

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Re: Anti Inflammation Diet
« Reply #17 on: October 11, 2022, 10:13:08 AM »
Developing a beef allergy is a pretty common after-effect of Lyme disease. I live in a Lyme zone and it seems like this particularly happens to older men for some reason.

I don't know if you were replying to me, but my issue was not an allergy. That was the first thing we looked at.

I would never try to give you medical suggestions! Just agreeing that beef is by no means a universally okay food. I know a lot of people who have had their gallbladders removed also report difficulty digesting beef.

@megaschnauzer , I am aware of the wackadoodle stuff, but beef allergy is a well-documented after-effect of tick bites. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/alpha-gal-syndrome/symptoms-causes/syc-20428608#:~:text=Alpha%2Dgal%20syndrome%20is%20a,gal%20into%20the%20person's%20body.

Some diseases just have the ability to fuck up the immune system in creative and inexplicable, but well-documented ways (see also: mononucleosis/glandular fever, which is a major risk factor fo autoimmune conditions).

I remember a meat allergy/Lyme's podcast a few years ago I think on Radiolab.

Gronnie

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Re: Anti Inflammation Diet
« Reply #18 on: October 11, 2022, 04:38:17 PM »
Developing a beef allergy is a pretty common after-effect of Lyme disease. I live in a Lyme zone and it seems like this particularly happens to older men for some reason.

I don't know if you were replying to me, but my issue was not an allergy. That was the first thing we looked at.

I would never try to give you medical suggestions! Just agreeing that beef is by no means a universally okay food. I know a lot of people who have had their gallbladders removed also report difficulty digesting beef.

Agreed. However, in general, eating only beef (or possibly lamb / some other ruminant) would be a good place to start for most people for an elimination diet.

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Re: Anti Inflammation Diet
« Reply #19 on: October 22, 2022, 01:42:16 PM »
Just a few thoughts.

N=1 is always a good idea.  Your body and its history are unique.


From a biologist's viewpoint:

Alkaloids* are plant responses to insects, they are toxins  Unfortunately we like them.  Caffeine is a good example.  We are just a lot bigger than insects, so the dose is lower.  Nicotine is also a plant alkaloid.  In concentrated form it is also toxic, and is easily absorbed through the skin.  Back when it was a commercial insecticide there were always deaths and near-deaths from spills**.

Plants don't like predators eating their seeds.  If their main seed predator is a mammal (like us, cattle, horses, etc.) then they are more likely to contain chemicals that are not good for mammals.  If the seeds are more likely to be eaten by birds, then the chemical defenses are more likely to be aimed at birds.  Same for insects as main seed predator.  Not guaranteed safe for mammals, odds are just a bit better.

Still on seeds - fruits are a plant's methods to move their seeds to a new home, with fertilizer.  So ripe fruits where the seeds are protected are enticing not damaging.  This has 2 implications - unripe fruits have seeds that are not ready to be released to the world yet, so the plant will make those unripe fruits unappealing - nasty tasting, poisonous, etc.  We get around some of that with cooking.  Second, the seeds inside those yummy fruits have some sort of protection so they don't get digested when the fruit is eaten - they are too small or too large to be crushed by teeth, they taste bad, they are toxic.  After all, almond flavouring is partly cyanide, so almond seeds are edible but peach and apple seeds are poisonous, just a difference in the amount of poison.    All of this to say, ripe fruit is better than unripe fruit and seeds are all potentially iffy to dangerous.  Of course people can develop sensitivity to fruits and seeds, look at strawberries.

And even fruits that we think are OK may not be.  Grapefruit interacts with some meds - I read recently that it inhibits the action of the cytochrome P45 enzyme in the liver, the enzyme that does a lot of metabolic detoxification.  So the cP45 enzyme doesn't do what it should do to a medication, a lot of medications are inactive as they are taken and are activated by the liver.

I would say that plants invented chemical warfare, except they didn't, bacteria did (think botulism as just one of many examples), followed by plants and fungi (aflotoxins in grains and peanuts are a major health issue).   Prey work hard at not being eaten, so anything we want to eat has protections against us, unless it is a very domesticated food that we have bred the protections out of.  Like canola oil, mostly.  Of course one of the big jobs of our liver is to detoxify all these protections.


Dairy - the original casein molecule gene had a mutation relatively recently.  A2 casein is the original, A1, is the mutation.  A lot of people who react to dairy, when it is not a lactose intolerance, are sensitive to A1.  So casein products and regular milk can all trigger them, while they may be fine with A2 milk.  Or if they are sensitive to all caseins (and/or whey) then they lose dairy.  For some people they are fine with ghee and not butter because of the milk solids.


*illustrative story - agronomists were looking for a coffee species that was naturally low in caffeine  They found one but it was high in other alkaloids and the coffee tasted horrible, alkaloids will do that.

** When I was a grad student I met an older chemist whose lab partner, back when they were grad students (so the 1920s or 30s), had spilled concentrated nicotine extract on himself.  Went into convulsions and almost died.  Fortunately it wasn't quite enough to kill him before his liver detoxified it, and he was OK.

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Re: Anti Inflammation Diet
« Reply #20 on: February 09, 2024, 05:24:00 AM »
This book has some diet advice. Granted it is for Hashimoto's Disease but it does seem decently researched.
https://www.amazon.com/Hashimotos-Thyroiditis-Lifestyle-Interventions-Treating/dp/0615825796

Right now I'm on the "elimination diet" where you eat chicken and chicken broth to rebuild your digestive tract. (Gluten and dairy causes autoimmune issues.) Then gradually reintroduce food to see what upsets your body.

 

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