Eating foods that trigger inflammation may lead to cardiovascular disease

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Published: February, 2021

Diets rich in foods that trigger chronic inflammation inside the body may raise your risk of developing cardiovascular disease. A study by a team of Harvard researchers, published Nov. 10, 2020, in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, found that people who ate more inflammation-provoking foods, like sugary drinks, red and processed meat, and refined carbohydrates, were 38% more likely to develop cardiovascular disease than those who ate a diet that helped to combat chronic inflammation. Inflammation-inhibiting foods tend to have more fiber and antioxidants, such as leafy greens, fruit, whole grains, and tea and coffee.

To come to these conclusions, the study authors looked at data from more than 200,000 women and men from three large studies, the Nurses' Health Study I and II and the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study. The participants were followed, in some cases, for more than three decades. The authors said follow-up studies will be needed to confirm their results, but their findings suggest that developing anti-inflammatory diets may help to prevent cardiovascular disease.

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