Friday, May 25, 2012

The Low Inflammation Diet

We are about to embark on a new diet regimen, and from the looks of things, it’s not going to be easy. Then again, with greater challenge comes greater reward, right? R and I were talking it over and we have decided to try to eat what is known as a low inflammation diet, which basically restricts or removes refined starches from your diet. Unfortunately, refined starches include many of the fun things in life, including potatoes (i.e., french fries), white bread, dairy (ice cream and cheese, though maybe yogurt), and perhaps the biggest one of all, sugar, or at least cane sugar, which is pretty much in every thing we eat and love.

This may beg the question, why, and truth be told, I don’t think I can give an adequate answer to convince you of our decision. Then again, this “adventure” is not about winning approval of our peers, but rather a quest to try a healthy diet that is a bit extreme, but healthy, nonetheless. I don’t think people can really dispute the healthful aspect, even if it takes a lot of the fun out of eating. Furthermore, there are some interesting and intriguing issues to consider, though for the record, I don’t have all the facts. Give me time to research this and I’ll get back to you.

First off, I just heard on VPR that the Pediatric Association has revealed that a whopping 1 in 4 teenagers has type 2 (adult onset) diabetes. Can that really be true? That number is difficult to fathom, but they went on to say that in the next 20 years that number will rise to 1 in 3. That is completely crazy. Now I know you have to take medical information with a grain of salt, especially when it pertains to obesity and body mass index. That number isn’t always an accurate measure of a person’s health because numbers don’t tell the whole story, but something like diabetes seems pretty straightforward because it’s a disease that is diagnosed. Now I always assumed that contracting diabetes was linked to being overweight, but that is not always the case. You can be thin and diabetic if your pancreas simply stops doing its job, and this can happen when it has to work too hard. I won’t go into the physiology of it all, but suffice it to say that you can eat your way to diabetes.

I don’t think our kids are at risk, they eat a healthy diet, and don’t overdo it with sweets, though they do love them, as do I. They are also active and are not overweight, but man do we love our sweets. I think the biggest thing I worry about for them is acne. They have good skin, they’re young, but I had acne as a teen, as did R, so they have the genetic potential. Plus, R and I are convinced that there is a dietary component. Now my word doesn’t mean much, but R has been researching nutrition as part of her research, and believe me when I tell you, when it comes to researching a topic, R doesn’t mess around. She doesn’t have a Ph.D. for nothing. Her current focus is nutrition and HIV, so she knows her stuff. The take home message is that certain foods must surely contribute to acne, and the biggest culprits are dairy and starch (sugar,bread,potatoes).

We’re going to give this a try. There are acceptable options to occasionally treat ourselves to some dietary enjoyment, but for the most part, it’s going to take a great deal of discipline. This, of course, is going to fall into my hands, because I’m the cook in the house, and I happen to love sugar, dairy, and starch. I also had bad skin, and am currently suffering from all sorts of health issues that I won’t go into right now. At some point you’re willing to try anything, and I’m big proponent of the importance of diet.

So here we go. Stay tuned for more. Until then, thanks for reading, and thanks to khancafee for the pic.

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