Inflammation is the body’s defence reaction to tissue damage or injury and is characterised by redness, heat, swelling and pain. The main objective of inflammation is to eradicate an irritant and repair the surrounding tissue. Although inflammation is absolutely necessary for the healing process and survival of the host, chronic or uncontrolled inflammation is detrimental to the host and is involved in many disease states.


  • Arthritis
  • Inflammatory bowel disease, Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis
  • Asthma
  • Eczema
  • Psoriasis
  • Coronary heart disease and some cancers

To help reduce inflammation follow these guide lines


  • Red meat – beef, liver, pork, lamb
  • High fat foods - especially foods high in animal fats and fried foods
  • Alcohol – except for the occasional glass of red wine
  • Refined carbohydrates – sugar, white bread and other white flour products (e.g. cakes, biscuits, pastry), white rice, white pasta
  • Caffeine – tea, coffee, cola
  • Processed foods – especially those containing additives and hydrogenated vegetable fats
  • Vegetable oils – safflower, sunflower, corn, soybean


  • Increase oily fish – salmon, mackerel, sardines, herrings
  • Increase fruits and vegetables – aim for 5-8 portions per day
  • Increase legumes – beans and lentils
  • Increase complex Carbohydrates – brown rice, sweet potato
  • Increase nuts and seeds – fresh, unsalted, not peanuts
  • Increase water – 6-8 glasses per day
  • Identifying food sensitivities/allergies - foods which are commonly a problem include:
    • Nightshade family – white potatoes, tomatoes, aubergines, green and red peppers and chillies
    • Dairy products
    • Wheat and gluten
    • Citrus fruits – lemons, limes, oranges, grapefruits

This article has
been written by
Terry Fairclough