Common Habits That Cause Chronic Inflammation

Inflammation occurs when white blood cells protect the body from ailments. Occasional inflammation is healthy; however, chronic inflammation can contribute to chronic diseases, according to a 2021 study. And everyday habits–such as sitting for hours or venting about your schedule–can increase inflammation. Although you might not expect it, these everyday habits are bad for your health.

Not Paying Attention To Trans Fats


Trans fats are the most dangerous type of fat. In 2002, researchers concluded that trans fats create inflammation markers. According to research in PLoS ONE, trans fats lower nitric oxide production in cells.

When your cells are harmed, your body prompts inflammation to get rid of them. Over time, this might result in chronic diseases like heart disease and diabetes. Check a product’s ingredients for trans fats.

Venting About Your Busy Schedule


Did you know that complaining about a busy schedule can be as stressful as doing it? Health and fitness coach Sarah Honey-Lawson says that recounting your schedule can trigger your body’s stress response. “By…telling everyone about your long to-do list, you are triggering a stress response from the body that will increase levels of cortisol, adrenaline, and cause inflammation,” she told Bustle.

Lighting Certain Scented Candles


Some scented products, including candles and air fresheners, release volatile organic compounds (VOCs). These negatively interact with other chemicals in the air, and some are carcinogens, according to the American Lung Association. A study in Environmental Health confirmed that some VOCs can cause inflammation in the airways.

Look for non-toxic candles with organic ingredients.

Not Wearing Sunscreen Daily


The American Academy of Dermatology advises people to put on sunscreen every day. If you don’t, you won’t just get burned; you will get more inflammation. “Exposure to UV light causes inflammation,” dermatologist Ellen Marmur told Vogue.

In the morning, apply sunscreen or a moisturizer with SPF. While outside, replenish sunscreen every few hours.

Sitting For Hours On End


Many people sit for long periods during work. However, this isn’t healthy. In 2014, researchers found that a sedentary lifestyle creates inflammation markers that might lead to type 2 diabetes.

According to CNN, researchers recommend standing every 20 to 30 minutes. Get some water, stretch, or walk a lap around the office to reduce inflammation.

“Catching Up” On Sleep Every Weekend


Many people sleep sparingly during the week and then catch up on rest over the weekend. Family physician Jaclyn Tolentino says that this can cause “low-grade inflammation.” In 2008, researchers discovered that losing sleep–even for one night–can cause inflammation. You are better off establishing a consistent sleep schedule than mixing it up every day.

Drinking Soda (Even Diet Soda) Regularly


Every can of soda can increase inflammation. During a 2011 study, researchers noticed that soda spikes CRP (c-reactive protein) levels, which is a marker of inflammation. Even diet sodas can increase inflammation, according to Consumer Reports.

Sodas raise cholesterol, which is an inflammatory response. An occasional soda is fine, but do not drink them regularly.

Browsing On Your Phone In Bed


Quality sleep is key to managing inflammation. Phones and laptops emit blue light, which messes with the body’s natural sleep cycle. According to the National Sleep Foundation, blue light causes people to lose sleep.

As you get less sleep, you’ll receive more inflammation forms in your body. Even long sleep can prompt inflammation if it is restless.

Eating A Lot Of Condiments


Many condiments, such as ketchup, sriracha, barbecue sauce, and teriyaki sauce, contain a high amount of sugar. Sugar increases inflammation markers, says a 2018 study in Nutrients. If you want more flavor, use spices instead.

In 2020, research from Penn State concluded that adding spices to any meal can lower inflammation.

Not Managing Stress


Occasional stress is normal; it is your body’s way of getting stuff done. But unmanaged chronic stress spawns consistent, unhealthy inflammation. In 2019, a study in Frontiers in Neuroscience found that stress, inflammation, and depression are all closely related.

If you work on quelling stress, you might spare your body from inflammatory diseases in the future.