Sunday, September 4, 2011

Eliminating Inflammation by Eliminating Wheat, Sugar, Dairy

Toes inflamed with chilblains (Wikipedia)
Inflammation-- the starting point for most chronic and terminal disease.  That sore spot or achey gut is quite likely inflamed tissue...  I recall from a hydrotherapy demo one time learning that inFLAMmation (read: flame; heat; fire) can be cooled with ice (as in the case of a hot, sore joint, back ache, a burn, or a stinging sensation) or with drinking water (as in the case of a stomach ache or a sore, inflamed throat).  Heart attack and cancer start with inflammation.

I am going to do three things to eliminate inflammation in my body, three things that I currently do right now but that I know don't work well for me.... I am already vegetarian/vegan/sometimes raw vegan, but these are three areas where I transgress and that usually results in weight gain (another indication of inflammation) and edema for me.  The three things that promote inflammation in some people that I will cut out of my life are:

narrowing of the esophagus
 near the junction with the stomach
 due to chronic gastroesophageal reflux
WHEAT: I'm not celiac, but I do believe that I am sensitive to gluten (protein) in wheat, barley, and other grains.  I feel better when I don't eat gluten bread and pasta.  I tend to bloat, and feel brain-fogged with gluten foods.  I have an excellent book on preparing organic, sugar-free, whole-grain (but not wheat and gluten-containing grains) sourdough bread.  I just need to get my act together, as they say, and DO the prep.  Most  storebought gluten-free products contain sugar and/or high glycemic grains (like sweet rice or cornmeal).  Most of the gluten-free products don't indicate that they are organically-grown and could well be another source of GMOs(?).  Gluten-free does not equal healthy, necessarily... just LESS unhealthy than eating gluten-containing stuff if one is gluten-sensitive or celiac.

DAIRY: I definitely feel and look better when I steer clear of dairy.  My skin breaks out, I bloat and feel acidic when I consume dairy.  Like with wheat, I have a terrible compulsion to gobble it up whenever it presents itself.  I love creamy, cheesy sauces, thick yogurt, cheese.... but I know it doesn't love me.  Aches and pains decrease and disappear when I cut dairy out of my diet.  I am not concerned about not getting enough calcium-- I eat lots of greens and other foods from plant sources that have highly absorbable calcium content.  

REFINED SUGAR:  Oh yeah, baby, I kind of slide into sweet stuff at the least glimpse of a stressful moment-- comes from all those 'glazed donuts' the town bakery of my childhood turned out.  haha.  Ellen White, health reformer in the 19th C. and one of the founding members of the Seventh-day Adventist Church I belong to, said that sugar was more dangerous to our health than meat, and she was an avowed vegetarian by that point.   I managed NOT to consume any refined sugar today, but it is difficult to avoid when attending potlucks and the like.... or even going to town and eating in a restaurant.  

So, I will keep a bit of a log around my mission to avoid these three bugabears in my life.  Tomorrow I will weigh myself and measure some of the areas where I tend to bloat and swell (eww, doesn't that sound attractive?) to compare as time goes on without the inflammatory agents in my life.

My husband and I are juicing daily with fall dandelion greens and fruits (as well as ginger, celery, etc.), and enjoying berries and fruits that we can harvest in our yard.  This is a blessed time of the year!  I wish you well, too, as you strive to reduce and eliminate anything that is creating inflammation in your body.


  1. Hi, I came cross our site searching for wheat, dairy and sugar free. I am currently on the weat, gluten, dairy free and low sugar diet. It would have been overwhelming to do all at once, but I started gluten free and then starting identifying other foods that were causing inflammation and health issues. I will be seeing a naturopathic doctor this week - they use eastern and western medicine. I wanted to wosh you luck in your challenges and tell you that food is the answer to healing. Best to you and your family, Vanessa Hill

    1. Vanessa, I just now came across your comment... I'm sorry that I missed it. I hope you are doing well and that you have been able to maintain a diet that works to heal. I am still struggling with the same old up-and-down habits but generally feel pain-free and definitely avoid a lot of the things above. Currently I follow Dr. McDougall's low-fat, starch-based, vegan diet. It works for us. Please let me know how you are doing! All the best, Cynthia


Organic Granny's RECIPE INDEX

Organic Granny's RECIPE INDEX
Mostly Vegan & Gluten-Free Recipes