A single meal high in animal fat can cause an immediate rise in the inflammation in our bodies that lasts for about four hours after a meal. One such impact of this is an immediate hardening of our arteries that reduces their ability to open normally in half. We keep ourselves in a low-grade chronic inflammation state every time we eat a meal with animal fat.
What is Chronic Inflammation?
It is an immune response to a perceived threat to our bodies.
Why is Inflammation Bad for our Bodies?
It is increasingly being linked to many forms of chronic disease including heart disease, cancer, diabetes, arthritis, allergies, autoimmune diseases and others.
There have been a number of theories over the years as to exactly what is causing the inflammation. The series of three videos (below) from Dr. Michael Greger at NutritionFacts.org walks through the theories and discusses what is thought to be the reason that animal products cause inflammation.
How Can I Reduce Chronic Inflammation?
- Reduce stress and get more sleep.
- Reduce your exposure to toxins in food by eating organic when possible.
- Reduce your exposure to environmental toxins when possible by choosing non-toxic personal care and cleaning products.
- Identify and address food allergies or sensitivities.
- Eat more plants.
- Eat fewer (or no) animal products.
- Reduce or eliminate your consumption of processed “foods”.
Keep in mind that reducing your consumption of meat and dairy is certainly beneficial, but know that every time you eat any animal products you are creating another episode of chronic inflammation in your body. This is one instance where “everything in moderation” can be very dangerous.
The good news is that plant foods don’t trigger inflammation. Additionally, plants contain many beneficial phytonutrients that are not found in animal products. Knowing that transitioning to a plant-based whole foods lifestyle can cause a significant drop in disease-producing inflammation means we can make the choice to dramatically reduce our likelihood of experiencing serious illness.
Watch the Videos
- Video 1: The Leaky Gut Theory of Why Animal Products Cause Inflammation
- Video 2: The Exogenous Endotoxin Theory
- Video 3: Dead Meat Bacteria Endotoxemia