What Are Inflammatory Foods And Who Should Avoid Them?

In a world with processed, refined, sweetened, salted, and altered foods, it may be hard to tell which foods are safe for you to eat. Remember, the food you're eating may not be the problem; the issue could be thatthe ingredients the food is processed with to increase its shelf life. And although the food may indeed last longer, processed foods can hurt your digestive system and cause inflammation.

Click here for the 9 Delicious Anti-Inflammatory Foods slideshow.

According to Medical News Today, inflammation is the body's immune response to injury and infection. There are more severe forms of inflammation that occur in the stomach and the intestines, such as gastritis. Even if you don't experience the more intense forms of inflammation in your digestive system, you may be experiencing discomfort from certain foods.

Added Sugars
Whether you are sweetening your coffee or eating a cream-filled donut, added sugars are a large contributing factor to inflammation. Even the products that market natural sugars can use refined sugars. It is important to know which products contain added sugar that could be hurting your digestive system.

Processed Oils
Bad fats such as vegetable oils that are hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated should be avoided. Processed oils are high in omega-6 fatty acids and low in omega-3 fatty acids. This imbalance contributes to inflammation.

Processed Dairy
Going further down the processed lane, the best-known drink for calcium happens to be near the top of the list of drinks that cause inflammation. Skim milk is not necessarily the best choice after all because the more processing, or skimming, done to your milk could make it more inflammatory.

Some people are unaffected by certain processed foods but if you notice that you feel bloated, fatigue, or irritation, it may be worth your while to eliminate common inflammatory foods. 

The accompanying slideshow is provided by special contributor Emily Jacobs.