So I dropped my boys off at daycare the other day. It was an early morning for my toddler and infant so I didn’t have time for them to sit down and eat breakfast at the table so I sent their food in with them to eat at daycare. I forgot that one of the breakfast snacks I left had peanuts in it. I left the daycare pretty quick that day and the teacher did not have time to find the error and send me back out the door with the contraband. When I came back later that evening to pick up my son there was a friendly reminder posted on the door as follows; To All: Please remember this is a peanut free zone. This was obviously intended for me to see since I made the mistake earlier that morning. I tucked my tail between my legs and walked out knowing then the mistake I had made.
Recently, a study reported that giving peanut butter to some children early may help prevent a peanut allergy. Generally, peanuts are one of the top food allergens in the United States according to the Food and Drug Administration . Others topping the list include dairy, gluten, soy, eggs, shellfish, and even other varieties of fish. With such serious consequences that some of these foods can have for children like anaphylaxis, it is likely that most of you reading this blog have heard of the threat that food holds. I share this example not for entertainment, but for enlightenment. It just really goes to show the power of foods and the effects it can have on the body. Certain foods are lethal for some affected with true allergies. But what if I was to ask you to define an “inflammatory food,” would you be able to answer? My education and research about the effects of food on the body began in high school when I had my first lesson in inflammatory foods due to those darn school lunches! That was the first thing ever to give me heartburn, which was signaling my body to tell me what I ate was inflammatory to my digestive tract.
What is inflammatory for one person may not be inflammatory for another. This highlights how all of us are very unique and special in our own ways. I have practiced now for 6 years and have “mixed” (joke for my colleagues reading this – you know who you are) in nutritional support for my patients and dietary recommendations to follow. I have been so excited to watch the success patients have by eliminating these “inflammatory” foods from their diet. Diet and nutritional supplements played a large part in this success in addition to a physical and mental health plan. At the end of the day, it is the synergistic effect of all the recommendations made under my chiropractic scope of practice that ultimately allows the life forces to generate greater magnitude.
So what is an inflammatory food?? I would like to clarify what I consider inflammatory foods based on my clinical ability and professional opinion. For the most part, I follow the lead of the United States FDA. This is a good place to start because these foods are bold-faced at the end of the ingredient labels on anything packaged. Gluten, dairy, soy, eggs, tomatoes, and peanuts are a good starting point. This is what I consider the “introductory” inflammatory foods. I would definitely expand the list if you really wanted to sit down with me and discuss food topics as I could talk hours about a variety of reasons why certain foods are good or bad for you. But, my intention today is to make you think a little differently about the power of food. After all, we eat it every day, and we know that it is going to affect how we function.
So what I want you to do next time you are reading that food ingredients on the back of your favorite food product at the grocery store, skim all the way to the end of the list and look for any bold-faced ingredients. Those ingredients are generally inflammatory. To find out if these foods might be inflammatory to you, see your functional medicine doctor and get tested!
Yours in Health,
Dr. Andrew J Kender III, DC
January 18, 2018
Functional Endocrinology of Ohio
Akron: 2800 S. Arlington Road, Akron, Ohio 44312 (330) 644-5488
Cleveland: 6200 Rockside Woods Blvd., Ste. 100, Independence, Ohio 44131 (216) 236-0060
Dr. Keith S. Ungar, Dr. Andrew Kender, Dr. Robert Nichols, Chiropractic Physicians