How To Reduce Inflammation Naturally In 6 Weeks!
Are you in pain? Have you looked for answers everywhere? Look no further. The 6-week diet teaches you how to reduce inflammation naturally!
Before I met Dr. Couey my husband and I had pain and thought it was normal - and we were only in our early 40’s! It’s part of life, right?
In America, we have an alarming increase of inflammatory diseases that besiege every age segment of our population. Children, teenagers, young adults, midlife adults, and especially senior adults are experiencing the painful health consequences of these diseases.
Although in America we have one of the greatest levels of access to food (known as food security), health supplements, and medicines in the world, we are nowhere near the healthiest.
As a matter of fact, we lead the world in doctor visits, which indicates we’re the sickest country in the world.
Why would that be?
Inflammatory disease (caused by the food we eat and environmental influences) is a huge reason.
We serve inflammation on a fork!
What Is Inflammatory Disease?
Inflammatory diseases can be defined as “any disease that causes an inflammatory response from the immune system.”
This response is a signal something is out of balance. It’s an alarm God designed to get our attention. When we ignore the signal, or alarm, we end up in more pain.
The immune system protects each cell in our bodies from foreign or harmful toxins. This God-designed protection is amazing and awe-inspiring! Our Creator equipped our bodies with an intricate, complicated system which performs phenomenal tasks on many cellular levels.
It’s the most...
...system in the human body.
How many of these diseases below do you deal with or know people who do?
Known Inflammatory Diseases:
Suspected Inflammatory Diseases:
Diseases Thought to have Inflammatory Causes:
America definitely has a problem! We have a problem!
What Is Inflammation?
Inflammation is the result of the immune system doing its job. When an invader raids our body, it responds by sending 3 types of white blood cells to attack and kill the invaders. This fight results in what medical researchers call “inflammation.”
Inflammation shows up as:
These symptoms tell us something’s wrong. After all, we can’t see the microscopic invaders attacking our cells!
So, if inflammation is our body’s way of alerting us to danger, isn’t it good? Some inflammation is good. Some inflammation is bad.
Inflammation that warns us of a problem or dysfunction in the body is helpful and we’re grateful for it. It acts as a catalyst for us to seek a remedy and help our body fight harmful intruders.
However, inflammation can also attack the body without any physiological reason. There may be no invader, but the body begins attacking itself without being attacked by something foreign or harmful.
This is what physicians have labeled “autoimmune disease.”
This unprovoked response of the immune system can lead to numerous problems, several of which can be extremely painful such as arthritis.
How To Reduce Inflammation Naturally
So, what can we do about inflammation?
The typical American response is to medicate the problems caused by the immune response. However, some drugs given to help symptoms of autoimmune disease have moderate to severe side effects, often causing other medical problems.
The better answer to inflammation is to eliminate foods that contribute to or cause inflammation and consume foods that help reduce it.
Helpful foods are ones that don’t contain arachidonic acid (AA). This is often thought to be the main culprit of inflammation and if AA production is reduced, the root causes of inflammation can be stopped.
Research shows that foods high in AA are:
- Palm oil
- Store-bought eggs (yokes, specifically)
AA is higher in conventionally farm-raised (not free range) animals because they are fed processed or genetically altered grains. When animals eat altered foods, AA is higher in their bodies and thus when we eat them, it increases in ours.
The increase can be as great as 2 times (in beef), 4 times (in chicken), and 7 times (in salmon).
The way we’re feeding our animals is harming our health. Like with our bodies, when animals are fed more natural food, they are healthier. This means they provide us with more nutritious food.
We eat what they eat.
Dr. Richard Couey (Professor emeritus of health sciences at Baylor University, who specializes in human physiology, human anatomy, sports medicine, and nutrition) has devised a three-fold challenge to help people overcome or reduce the pain associated with inflammation.
This challenge can be found in the Treasures of Healthy Living Nutrition Manual and on this video.
I’ve shared Dr. Couey’s 6-week anti-inflammatory challenge with many people over the years and my clients have reported significant reduction in their pain.
Less pain - that feels amazing!
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Reduce Inflammation with Food
The Couey 6-Week Challenge has 3 main aspects. Each of them are geared to reducing inflammation and increasing health. Sometimes this takes drastic changes in our diet, but the results are well worth it.
The 3-pronged approach includes:
#1 - Reduce Arachidonic Acid
The first step to reducing inflammation is to reduce the arachidonic acid (AA) in our bodies.
In order to reduce AA, we must eliminate the foods that contain it. This will happen if you follow the inflammation reduction diet strictly for six weeks.
Step one includes reducing AA, and works best only when combined with steps 2 and 3.
Foods to eliminate as part of step 1 are:
- Meat: This includes beef, chicken, turkey, pork, and lamb
- Dairy: This includes milk, butter, cheese, and yogurt
- Palm oil: Palm oil is high in foods that are crispy. Such as all types of chips and crackers.
To reduce AA and inflammation, you should eat NONE of these during the 6 week challenge.
2. Correct Ratio Of Omega 6s To Omega 3s
Also very important to reducing inflammation is getting the right ratio of omega-6s to omega-3s, which is 1:1 to no greater than 4:1.
Most Americans eat 50 times more omega-6s than omega-3s. This means the omega-6s are breaking down into large amounts of arachidonic acid.
To counteract this, we must consume large amounts of foods that contain omega-3s. Foods that are high in omega-3s are raw nuts, flaxseed, and wild fish.
During Couey’s Challenge, the goal is to consume raw nuts such as walnuts, almonds, cashews, pecans, and peanuts. Raw nuts are not roasted or salted.
Raw nuts serve well as a snack or can be added to a variety of dishes and meals such as salads, oatmeal, and cereals.
Flaxseed and flaxseed oil are remarkably high in omega-3’s, making them another great addition. It’s recommended that people use flaxseed often in their diet.
Fish - A great source of Omega-3s
Eating wild fish is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids, which will help balance the ratio to omega-6s. However, there are three types of fish that should be avoided:
- Tilapia - although called St. Peter’s fish in Israel today, in America it is a farmed fish.
These fish are usually farmed or have truly little omega-3s in them. Wild fish such as those below contain large amounts of omega-3s:
- Sea bass
- Orange roughy
- Mahi mahi
I recommend that you consume the above wild fish at least 3-5 times per week as part of a healthy anti-inflammatory diet. Eating these fish baked or grilled would also help cut down on calories if you have a weight issue.
This is a lot per week, yet remember, we’re working to reduce inflammation in your body.
As you can see, the purpose of Couey’s Challenge is to change the chemistry in the cell. We are trying to reduce arachidonic acid (AA) by cutting down on foods that contain omega-6s. Conversely, we are also trying to add omega-3s, which should help get the ratio from 50:1 to less than 4:1.
If we can change the abnormal chemistry in the cell to a more normal chemistry, then the cell won’t send out messages for the immune system to attack it, thus preventing inflammation.
3. Eat Low Glucose-Stimulating Foods
The third challenge we face is to eat foods that are low glucose stimulating foods. The glucose level is the most monitored physiological function in the human body.
The reason for this is because glucose is the brain’s food. The human brain needs approximately 140 grams of glucose a day. It needs this glucose in a steady amount.
If someone consumes too much or too little glucose, then the brain reacts, causing what is known as “brain fog.” This causes trouble remembering things, having extraordinarily little energy, and lethargy.
Most medical authorities recommend that the glucose level remains between 70 milligrams to 120 milligrams. If your blood glucose level exceeds 120 milligrams or drops below 70 milligrams, then the brain demands help from the pancreas to balance the glucose between those parameters.
The pancreas will release insulin if the glucose level goes too high. It does this to bring the glucose level back to within normal range.
If the glucose level drops too low, then the pancreas will release glucagon which causes the glucose level to rise to normal levels.
When people eat foods that cause a high glucose release then blood levels rise very quickly to 200 milligrams or higher. When the pancreas is working properly, this causes it to release large amounts of insulin, which can cause the glucose level to drop quickly to 50 milligrams or below. This condition is called hypoglycemia.
The symptoms of hypoglycemia:
- Brain fog
- Death may occur
- Loss of consciousness
- Severe tiredness
It’s an awful feeling!
It has been estimated that approximately 100 million Americans experience a mild to severe form of hypoglycemia.
Many medical authorities believe that some forms of hypoglycemia can be evidence of a predisposition to diabetes.
Americans lead the world in the number of diabetics. We have 100 million with pre-diabetes. Diabetes can affect the heart, kidneys, and circulation to the legs and eyes. It’s the leading cause of amputations and blindness in America.
Many times type 2 diabetes (insulin resistance and reduced insulin production) can be reversed or prevented by diet and exercise.
Preventing this horrible disease should be a priority for every person.
What Are High Glucose Stimulating Foods
Let’s get back to Couey’s 6-Week Diet for Inflammation Reduction Challenge.
When insulin level goes up quickly, it stimulates enzymes to produce more arachidonic acid and thus inflammation. We should eat foods that are low on the glycemic index, which will prevent high insulin release by the pancreas.
Remember, eating foods that stimulate glucose release will cause a quick rise in blood sugar levels and cause a high insulin response.
Foods best to avoid, include:
- Processed foods - forever say goodbye - good riddance!
- Foods containing white flour - not your friend
- Foods containing white sugar or corn syrup - never your friend
- Candy - eat the wrapper, save your brain
- Baked desserts - pies, cakes, cookies, etc.
- White rice - yikes, call it naked rice
- Baked breads - not including freshly milled by you
- White potatoes - sugar spike; grow your own
Instead, eat plenty of real unprocessed foods: God’s food He declared good for us will always lead to balance.
New research with intermittent fasting shows this may also be an answer for this problem.
- Brussels Sprouts
- Dark Leafy Greens
- Green Beans
- Kidney Beans
- Summer Squash
- Chia Seeds
- Rye Bread
- Steel-cut Oats
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Organic herbs and spices
There are many more options. Too many to list here. You definitely won’t run out of a variety of things to eat.
Oh, and as an added note, dark chocolate is on the OK list!
Top 11 Foods For An Anti Inflammation Diet
What should you eat to maintain reduced inflammation?
After completing the 6-week Couey Challenge, the following anti-inflammatory meal plan is a good guideline to follow for the rest of your life. It will keep the arachidonic acid at a normal level, which will protect from run-away inflammation.
Anti-inflammatory foods include:
1. Whole Grains
a. Whole grain bread
I recommend Ezekiel bread, if available. Otherwise, learn to mill your own wheat and make all your own bread products.
Your health will increase rapidly. Watch out for the label “whole wheat bread,” because it’s still processed. The producers just didn't bleach the endoderm white. Don’t let the color of the bread fool you.
The label must read “whole grain wheat bread” for it to be the healthy version.
Watch my video on how to make healthy bread (it's my 100% FREE homemade bread making class!)
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b. Whole grain cereals
Spruce it up with various types of berries, such as blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, goji berries, or acai berries and sprinkle them liberally on your cereal.
c. Whole grain oats
Use steel-cut or old-fashioned oats instead of minute oats.
Put some raw nuts or fruit on your oatmeal to add nutrition and mix up flavors. Fruit also works on oatmeal. If you want something else to sweeten it up, I recommend using stevia as a sweetener, since it’s made from an herb. Cinnamon is also a great addition.
d. Whole grain pasta
Use a vegetable- or fruit-based sauce. Don’t forget to use grass-fed beef or free-range chicken for your meat sauce. Tossing whole grain pasta with olive oil and some herbs (like pesto) works well, too.
Better yet - use vegetables such as zucchini, spaghetti squash and summer squash for pasta.
e. Brown rice and wild rice
Eat large amounts of beans and peas. Always try to eat these as fresh as possible. Frozen is alright, but watch out for legumes in cans. Sometimes the food producers add many preservatives.
Tubers are foods that grow underground.
Eat sweet potatoes or new red potatoes instead of white potatoes. These potatoes cause digestive enzymes to slowly break the carbohydrate into glucose, which causes a lower insulin response.b. Other tubers.
Tuber vegetables such as onions, carrots, turnips, beets, and radishes are excellent sources of nutrition. So is garlic!
Everyone should try to eat at least one fruit every day. Diabetics may have to reduce or eliminate the following fruit because of their high glycemic effect: pineapple, watermelon, mangos, kiwi, and bananas.
All varieties of vegetables are an excellent source of nutrition. I feel you should eat at least five servings a day with two vegetables being cruciferous. Eating these vegetables raw in a salad would also add enzymes to your nutrition.
6. Wild Fish
Wild fish contains high sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which can help keep the production of arachidonic acid at a low level.
They aren’t just the perfect addition to the 6-week plan to reduce inflammation in the body, but also integral to a long-term anti-inflammatory diet.
7. Grass Fed Beef
Grass fed beef has much lower levels of arachidonic acid in it, which helps control inflammation.
Beef that is fed processed or genetically engineered corn, soy, and grain has a much higher arachidonic acid level, which promotes inflammation.
Find a farmer and become friends. Support each other. Your future may depend on it.
8. Free-Range Chicken And Turkey
Chickens and turkeys that are allowed to eat in natural outdoor settings have far less arachidonic acid present.
9. Dairy Products In Moderation
Americans are consuming too many dairy products that are pasteurized and homogenized or altered. Search for raw milk products.
10. Nuts And Seeds
Nuts and seeds are powerhouses for nutrition. They come packed with an abundance of vitamins and minerals in small packages. These make a wonderful addition to any meal plan.
Make your own smoothies! Anyone can make a delicious combination of fruits and vegetables with a blender.
Reduce Inflammation in the Body
The 6-week challenge diet can help reduce inflammation in the body drastically, but making an anti-inflammation diet part of a healthy lifestyle will help fight inflammation on a consistent basis.
The foods listed above, which cover all meals - breakfast, lunch, and dinner - are a part of any healthy diet.They also all fit within the 3 principles of healthy living that changed my life and can change yours.
As with any healthy diet, the inflammation reduction meal plan is high in fiber. This means in addition to reducing inflammation, it also promotes weight loss and helps lower risk of chronic illness, such as rheumatoid arthritis, heart disease, and digestive diseases.
What great incentive to get started today!
Fight inflammation with this great challenge and reap the abundant rewards for a lifetime with a healthy lifestyle.
Plan Your Meals
Planning meals is exceptionally helpful in maintaining health overall, and sets you up for success when implementing an anti-inflammatory diet!
Following this eating plan will ensure your body’s cells receive a bounty of the necessary 27 elements they need for optimal health in their proper amounts.
Don’t fail to plan, plan to succeed!
Perform Your Best
The highest performance possible will start to energize your day and make it so much easier to be on mission!
As the anti-inflammatory diet is followed, harmful additives like high fructose corn syrup, trans fats, refined carbs, and added sugar are eliminated, resulting in less fatigue and more energy.
Combined with the anti-inflammatory benefits of the foods listed in the plan above, your body will be celebrating every day, rewarding you with abundant living and vitality.
Protect Your Future
Taking the 6-week challenge and maintaining an anti-inflammation diet means you can be protected against many types of inflammatory diseases and can better fight the inflammation in your body already.
Follow the Couey 6-Week Diet for Inflammation Reduction, then make healthy living a lifestyle that will bless you every day.
Remember: God designed GOOD Foods. Man, on the other hand, alters it beyond our benefit.
When we return to good food, we return to great health.