Diet and Inflammation?

(Personal Note)

In November 2000, AIDS Treatment News published an interview with Lynde Francis, who runs The Centre, an AIDS treatment organization in Harare, Zimbabwe. Because her clients had no access to antiretrovirals, she had to do what could be done with nutrition and lifestyle changes. Part of the recommendation was to eat a traditional diet, avoiding modern "junk foods."

I couldn't see how this could make a difference in HIV disease. But later I tried such a diet for a different problem, a severe wrist pain -- after a "junk food" dinner repeatedly seemed to make the problem worse the next day. For me the diet appeared close to 100% effective. My wrist had become steadily worse for several months; it was better after a few days on the diet. The problem was essentially gone in a few weeks, and has not returned in over a year since.

I coined the name "The Century Diet" as a personal reminder. The only rule is, "Don't eat anything that wasn't available 100 years ago."

My experience and other information suggests that something in the modern diet (possibly trans fatty acids?) can interfere with the body's ability to handle inflammation properly. If so, this process could be contributing to widespread health problems, including repetitive stress injury, cardiovascular disease, and perhaps some complications of HIV. Research could find the culprit(s) fairly easily, by clinical testing with a few volunteers who are close to the borderline between having symptoms or not. Diets and meals could be "fractionated" -- successively divided and tested to see which ingredient causes the symptom -- somewhat like medicinal plant products are fractionated chemically to find an active ingredient.

Since this issue is mostly outside the focus of AIDS Treatment News, we set up an email list where anyone interested can continue the discussion. For more information, see:

ISSN # 1052-4207

Copyright 2002 by John S. James. Permission granted for noncommercial reproduction, provided that our address and phone number are included if more than short quotations are used.

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