The beneficial anti-inflammatory properties of a Starch-Smart® Diet come from the avoidance of inflammatory foods such as animal products, as well as the inclusion of micronutrient-rich, whole plant foods. Plant foods are a rich source of phytochemicals, which support our endothelial cells that line the inside of our entire vascular system. These cells play an important role in maintaining the elasticity and dilation of our blood vessels by producing a gas called nitric oxide. The health and performance of these cells is determined by the types of foods that we eat. Saturated animal fats as well as refined vegetable oils are two factors that have been shown to damage these cells. When these cells become damaged, the blood vessels become stiff, inflamed, and paralyzed, impairing the flow of blood. This damage also promotes the development of plaque formation, causing atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries). This damage can occur after consuming a single high-fat meal of animal products and lasts for several hours.
This same inflammation takes place throughout our entire body, including our lungs, causing both immediate and long term damage. Scientists have now discovered that bacterial endotoxins found in our bloodstream following a meal of animal products is what causes this inflammatory response and occurs within hours after eating. Watch this two-part video response by Dr. Michael Greger, as he explains this process in greater detail. "After a meal of animal products, people suffer from endotoxemia, their bloodstream becomes awash with bacterial toxins, known as endotoxins. A single meal of meats, eggs, and dairy can cause a spike of inflammation within hours that can stiffen one's arteries." Normal blood flow can be significantly reduced up to 50% lasting for up to 5-6 hours. Repeating this cycle with more animal products continues the progression of this inflammatory process. "This can set us up for inflammatory diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, and certain cancers one meal at a time."
The Leaky Gut Theory of Why Animal Products Cause Inflammation
The Exogenous Endotoxin Theory