10 Triggers of Inflammation (2024)

Inflammation is a natural process and a healthy physical reaction. After all, it’s a big part of how our body recovers after facing disease or injury. The problem, though, is that many of us deal with chronic inflammation brought about by various inflammation triggers.

This is a huge issue for two reasons: first, cancer tends to migrate and travel to areas of inflammation -yikes! Second, if you’re in an inflammatory state, you have an immune reaction going on with histamines. Too much histamine in the body can essentially cause a fatigue poison, leading to:

  • Mucus
  • Congestion
  • Fatigue

In short, it's something that should be avoided as much as possible.

While there’s a lot you can do to reduce inflammation, the best treatment is to recognize and avoid triggers altogether so you don’t have to face it at all.

Here are the top 10 triggers of inflammation to be aware of.

1. Food Allergies

When you eat something that you’re allergic to, it causes inflammation. Seems simple enough, but this can be a lot more difficult to detect than it seems. Why? Most food allergies don’t cause huge systemic inflammation. Instead, they’re usually localized to a particular area like the small or large intestines.

What’s more, one particular part of your body can be allergic to something, while another part is not. That means that you can introduce something into your system that causes a disruptive reaction in one organ, but you may not notice the symptoms anywhere else.

This can cause a lot of food allergies to go unchecked for long periods of time. The top triggers here are dairy and nuts, so try to avoid those if you suspect that you have this issue.

2. Fat Storing Hormone Resistance

Fat Storing Hormone resistance can cause a lot of inflammatory issues. The main things you'll notice is stiffness, pain in your body and joints.

Now let’s break this down a bit.

Fat Storing Hormone resistance comes from consuming more sugar than you need for an extended period of time. Here's the short version of how it works: your body naturally releases Fat Storing Hormone to decrease your blood sugar and help regulate certain processes. In the “normal” modern diet, though, we eat about 32 times more sugar than we’re supposed to - which, in itself, is extremely inflammatory - so your body is forced to release too much Fat Storing Hormone for too long. Your cells react by blocking it altogether. In other words, they become Fat Storing Hormone resistant.

This creates a dangerous cycle: your body continues producing more and more Fat Storing Hormone because your cells need it, but your cells keep blocking it and holding onto fat. As a result, you hold onto your sugar, you can’t lose weight, and you become inflamed.

This is the most common cause of chronic inflammation. Luckily, a change in your diet - like a switch to keto - can get rid of the problem right away.

3. Cortisol

Cortisol is an adrenal hormone that actually works to get rid of inflammation in the body. Today, though, many people have issues with their cortisol levels: they either have low cortisol due to adrenal fatigue or cortisol resistance where it’s low in certain parts of their body and high in others.

This can lead to a lot of inflammatory issues, including autoimmune conditions, skin problems, poison ivy - even rheumatoid arthritis. It can also lead to a condition called Addison’s, an adrenal burnout that causes chronic inflammation all over the body. John F. Kennedy had it, and it generally requires that you take a steroid like prednisone to treat it.

So how do you identify this issue? In general, if you find yourself having to take steroids - cortisone cream, prednisone, etc. - it’s probably an adrenal weakness that you’re dealing with.

The solution? Strengthening your adrenals. A great natural cortisol replacement to start with is licorice (not the candy, but licorice extract) though you can find some more comprehensive solutions here.

4. Old Injuries

This is an important one to talk about because most people don’t think about past injuries when they’re facing their present inflammation. They think, “It was a long time ago, it’s fine,” but the reality is that there’s a huge connection.

Why? The area is damaged and there's not a lot of circulation anymore, so you're going to find lasting, chronic inflammation symptoms. These include stiffness, swelling, and low-grade, ongoing pain.

This kind of inflammation can be greatly reduced through intermittent fasting and switching to an anti-inflammatory diet.

5. Infection

Inflammation, at its core, is a big part of the immune system's response. It comes about because the body is starting to attack certain pathogens or threats. The problem is that a lot of people can often have consistent, low-grade infections that evoke this immune response.

For example, a lot of people have:

  • Yeast or Candida
  • Viruses
  • An overgrowth of unfriendly bacteria
  • Diseases like Lyme.

Really commonly, people also have small microbes called nanobacteria in the body. These bacteria can be tricky for the immune system to find and kill because they develop a hard calcium shell to protect themselves. As a result, they can linger in the body and cause an inflammatory response, along with other systemic problems. The biggest thing you’ll notice if you have this: fatigue.

So how do you address these issues? One remedy is to dissolve the shell using an EDTA - a chelator that pulls the calcium shell off and exposes the nanobacteria. Then, you can use a natural antibiotic to kill it.

10 Triggers of Inflammation (1)

Some great natural antibiotics include:

  • Clove
  • Oregano
  • Thyme
  • Garlic
  • Curcumin

Whatever you choose, it's important that you start clearing out the old infection in the body. And remember to avoid the sugar that feeds the infection so it doesn’t keep coming back.

6. Oxidants

Oxidants can be many things - sugar, junk food, and alcohol - but a big one is free iron. It’s very corrosive and it can basically create a rusting effect in the body. The body will try to repair this damage with calcium and cholesterol, creating plaque. This can lead to brain problems, heart disease, acute inflammation, and other serious issues.

This oxidative stress can also create an ongoing inflammatory condition as the body tries to battle the effects of the oxidants. So how are you exposed to this free iron?

10 Triggers of Inflammation (2)

  • SUPPLEMENTS: There are many low-quality supplements on the market that give you the wrong kind of iron. To avoid oxidants, then, you have to ditch the junk and get your iron from grass-fed liver extract (you can get it in a pill) or from grass-fed spleen extract instead.
  • WHEAT PRODUCTS: Many wheat products in the U.S. are enriched with iron. You can usually identify them because, after you eat them, you’re going to feel heaviness in your gut. This is super corrosive and it can create a lot of problems in the body.

One more thing to look out for here? Anemia. Microbes - both good and bad - eat iron. So, if you have a lot of iron in your system, it will attract bacteria. When you start developing inflammation, your body will then hide the iron and pull it out so the pathogens can’t eat it. This can lead to a sudden drop in iron and anemia.

The point? Anytime you have too much iron, you’re going to have more infection, more inflammatory response, and more problems in the body.

7. Alcohol and Junk Food

This one may seem pretty obvious, but it's still important to discuss. Alcohol and junk foods will create damage and cause systemic inflammation in the body. That's because:

  • There's too much sugar in these products, which will lead to Fat Storing Hormone resistance
  • Alcohol damages the liver, which will cause inflammation
  • You're not getting the nutrients you need to strengthen your immune system
  • You're loading up on toxins
  • And more

So, avoid trans fats and unhealthy junk foods and stick to the anti-inflammatory stuff instead.

8.Omega-6 Fatty Acids From Soy and Corn Oil

You’ve probably heard a lot about the benefits of consuming omega-3 fatty acids (found in things like oily fish, flaxseeds, and walnuts). And it’s true - omega-3s are great for your health. They’re actually anti-inflammatory, and they can help guard against heart disease, strengthen nails, help skin, and more. But, they're not the only fatty acids out there.

There are also omega-6 fatty acids, found in corn, safflower, sunflower, soy, and vegetable oils. These are actually pro-inflammatory and they raise your risk of heart disease and other issues.

So avoid the omega-6 and stick to the omega-3's whenever possible.

9. Raw Nuts and Raw Seeds

Raw nuts and raw seeds actually have enzyme inhibitors that can create a problem with your digestion, particularly in the gallbladder.

When you consume too many nuts, you can have more irritation and inflammation in the body. An easy solution - if nuts are a big part of your diet - is to switch to germinated nuts or soak your nuts overnight before you eat them.

10. Gallbladder

You’re not going to find a lot of research on this, though it’s something that I’ve personally observed working with thousands of people over the past 30 years.

People often have congested gallbladders. Maybe it's because they’re eating junk food, maybe they're consuming too much sugar, and maybe it's something else. Whatever the case, the gallbladder ultimately swells up, gets congested, and becomes deficient in bile. This leads to bloating and chronic inflammation in the gut. It can even refer pain to the right neck, shoulder and shoulder blade.

A common tell of this problem is if your stomach is flat in the morning and bigger at night. And if you're not sure, there’s a quick way to check. Simply press underneath your right rib cage and massage the area for around 2 minutes. It should bring instant relief if this is your issue. And if it is? You can switch to a more anti-inflammatory diet to help.

There you have it - the top 10 triggers of inflammation. Hope it has helped, and you can contact us here if you have any questions or want help making the first big changes.

Up Next:

  • Deeper Causes of Pain and Inflammation
  • Understanding Fat Storing Hormone Resistance
  • Can the Ketogenic Diet Spike Cortisol
10 Triggers of Inflammation (2024)


How do you flush inflammation out of your body? ›

Healthy eating tips to help reduce inflammation
  1. Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. ...
  2. Choose high-fiber carbohydrates. ...
  3. Eat more fiber. ...
  4. Choose plant-based and leaner animal protein sources. ...
  5. Be conscious of your fat sources. ...
  6. Reduce the omega-6 to omega-3 ratio in the diet. ...
  7. Reduce your sugar intake. ...
  8. Limit or avoid alcohol.
Nov 16, 2023

What is the biggest contributor to inflammation? ›

1. Added Sugars. Americans' consumption of excess added sugars is considered a major contributor to inflammation, which in turn increases one's potential for chronic diseases like obesity, diabetes and heart disease.

What foods flush out inflammation? ›

What are six anti-inflammatory foods? Berries, fatty fish, nuts, leafy greens, oatmeal, and olive oil can all be part of an anti-inflammatory diet. But it's best to include a variety of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.

What heals inflammation? ›

Many foods fight inflammation in your body. These include fatty fish (like salmon), fresh fruits and leafy greens, just to name a few. You may also use spices with anti-inflammatory properties, like turmeric, ginger or garlic. Following an anti-inflammatory diet can help reduce and prevent inflammation in your body.

What are the best anti-inflammatory snacks? ›

Anti-inflammatory foods

green leafy vegetables, such as spinach, kale, and collards. nuts like almonds and walnuts. fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, tuna, and sardines. fruits such as strawberries, blueberries, cherries, and oranges.

What is the best natural anti-inflammatory supplement? ›

Here are 10 supplements that research shows may help reduce inflammation.
  1. Curcumin. Curcumin is a compound found in the spice turmeric, which is commonly used in Indian cuisine and known for its bright yellow hue. ...
  2. Fish oil. ...
  3. Ginger. ...
  4. Resveratrol. ...
  5. Spirulina. ...
  6. Vitamin D. ...
  7. Bromelain. ...
  8. Green tea extract.

Is coffee inflammatory? ›

Fellow coffee drinkers, I have great news! Research suggests that coffee does not cause inflammation in most people—even if your norm is more than one or two caffeinated cups. In fact, it's quite the opposite. Coffee may have anti-inflammatory effects in the body.

What are the worst inflammatory foods to eat? ›

Red meat and processed meats, including bacon, hot dogs, lunch meats and cured meats. Refined grains, including white bread, white rice, pasta and breakfast cereals. Snack foods, including chips, cookies, crackers and pastries. Sodas and other sweetened drinks.

Are eggs inflammatory? ›

According to a 2020 review, eggs contain substances such as trimethylamine-N-oxide, omega-6 fatty acids, and arachidonic acid, which can promote inflammation. However, a 2019 study on adults found no connection between egg consumption and inflammatory biomarkers in the blood.

Are bananas anti-inflammatory? ›

Bananas have anti-inflammatory properties that may reduce inflammation and support the immune system. While more research is necessary, eating bananas may help clear up symptoms of Lyme disease. Currently, there are minimal studies on the effects of food and nutrition on Lyme disease.

Is peanut butter inflammatory? ›

Peanut butter also contains some linoleic acid, an essential omega-6 fatty acid abundant in most vegetable oils. Some studies suggest that a high intake of omega-6 fatty acids, relative to omega-3, may increase inflammation and the risk of chronic disease ( 13 ).

Is cheese inflammatory? ›

Unfortunately, many foods considered part of the traditional western diet can cause inflammation. When following an anti-inflammatory diet, avoid eating: Foods high in saturated fats (including red meat, cheese and foods made with saturated fats and oils) Full-fat dairy (such as cheese and whole milk)

What is the fastest way to recover from inflammation? ›

Follow these six tips for reducing inflammation in your body:
  1. Load up on anti-inflammatory foods. ...
  2. Cut back or eliminate inflammatory foods. ...
  3. Control blood sugar. ...
  4. Make time to exercise. ...
  5. Lose weight. ...
  6. Manage stress.
Mar 29, 2024

Why do I have so much inflammation in my body? ›

Several things can cause chronic inflammation, including: untreated causes of acute inflammation, like an infection or injury. an autoimmune disorder, which involves your immune system mistakenly attacking healthy tissue. long-term exposure to irritants, like industrial chemicals or polluted air.

What is the fastest way to flush inflammation? ›

The Fastest Ways to Reduce Inflammation
  1. Find the Cause of the Chronic Inflammation.
  2. Consult with a Health Professional.
  3. Reduce Stressors.
  4. Get Enough Sleep.
  5. Support Your Gut.
  6. Eat More Colorful Plant-Based Foods.
  7. Stay Hydrated.
  8. Spice Up Your Meals.
Sep 22, 2023

How long does it take to get inflammation out of your system? ›

It may occur when you're experiencing a sore throat or even a small cut on your skin. Acute inflammation should go away within a few days or weeks once the cause is under control.

What are the five symptoms of inflammation? ›

There are five symptoms that may be signs of an acute inflammation:
  • Redness.
  • Heat.
  • Swelling.
  • Pain.
  • Loss of function.
May 18, 2021

How long does it take to flush out inflammation? ›

After an injury, you may wonder how long it will take for the inflammation to go away. “If it's acute inflammation, usually it takes a few days,” says Dr. Kaplan. But chronic inflammation doesn't develop overnight, and it can't be treated overnight, either.


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