105 Tips: How to Reduce Inflammation in the Body Fast

How to reduce inflammation in the body fast

Reducing inflammation in the body is important for overall health. Chronic inflammation can lead to a number of health problems, such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, and inflammatory bowel disease, to name just a few.

Luckily, there are many ways to reduce this condition quickly and easily. In this blog post, we will outline 105 different ways to reduce inflammation in the body.

How to Reduce Inflammation in the Body Fast?

Here we will discuss many different ways to reduce chronic inflammation by breathing cleaner air, drinking better water, and eating higher-quality food.

We also discuss habits you can create and follow to reduce inflammation in the body, including following an anti inflammatory diet and getting regular exercise. 

By taking these easy steps, you can help your body’s immune system work better and lower your risk of getting a long-term illness.

Some of the links in this article may be affiliate links, which can provide compensation to me at no cost to you if you decide to purchase a product. 

1. Drink filtered or purified water.

There are all kinds of contaminants in our drinking water, whether you’re getting it from a municipal supply or a well. Drinking better water might mean using a water filter or refilling water jugs with reverse osmosis water from your local grocery store.

2. Use stainless steel water bottles (and avoid plastic).

Plastic bottles can leach harmful, endocrine-disrupting chemicals into the water. Perhaps you’ve heard of BPA, a chemical found in plastic that can have serious negative health effects over time. (1)

But have you heard of BPF and BPS?  These are also chemicals (that are also harmful) that have been used to replace BPA so industries can put “BPA Free” on the label. (2) It is better to use your own water filter and carry it in a stainless steel bottle.

3. Test your water.

Whether your water comes from the city you live in or a private well, it can be contaminated with metals, nitrates, microorganisms, and other pollutants that can compromise your health and promote inflammation.

Check with your county for water testing services or buy a simple water test online.

4. Eat the rainbow.

Colorful fruits and vegetables

When you eat colorful fruits and veggies you get the benefits of powerful phytonutrients, which are chemicals produced naturally that have anti inflammatory properties. 

These compounds have antioxidant effects on the body, helping to protect you from free radicals and reduce inflammation.

5. Buy organic.

It’s no secret that organic food is more expensive, but it’s worth making the switch if you have the means and opportunity. Organic foods contain fewer pesticides, industrial additives, and other inflammatory ingredients.

If the cost or availability is limiting your ability to buy organic, see if you can at least find organic versions of the Environmental Working Group’s (EWG) Dirty Dozen, a list of the 12 produce items that are most commonly contaminated with pesticides. 

For non-organic foods, you’re good to go with EWG’s Clean15.

6. Shop the walls of the supermarket.

These foods are well-known for being tasty, inexpensive, and full of chemicals. Just try to read a list of ingredients for a boxed snack and see how many words you can actually pronounce.

Instead, stick to the perimeter of the supermarket when you shop. This is where you’ll find fresh, minimally processed, whole foods that are higher in nutrition and lower in toxic additives.

7. Avoid monosodium glutamate (MSG).

MSG is found in many highly processed foods. It has been associated with hypertension, obesity, and nervous system impairment.

It goes by many names on the label, including “natural flavors,” “autolyzed yeast,” and “yeast extract.” It’s best to avoid processed foods in general, but if you must have them, choose organic ones to reduce the chance it has MSG.

8. Support local farmers for produce, meats, eggs, and honey.

When you buy locally grown, raised, and produced food, you get food that is fresher and more nutrient-dense. 

And if you shop at farmer’s markets, you can ask the farmer about how the animals are raised, what kinds of pesticides and herbicides they use, and whether their chickens get out in the sun. 

Local honey is great too and can often be found at farmers’ markets. It’s not only delicious, but consuming it can help combat allergies to local plants.

9. Grow your own food.

When you grow your own food, you know exactly what goes in (and on) your plants. No space for a large garden? All you really need to grow at least some of your own food is access to sunlight and water. 

If growing your own food is new to you, start small with a window box of herbs. You’ll be hooked in no time.

10. Use non toxic pesticides.

It’s great to have a garden, especially if you’re using it to grow some of your own food. The last thing you want to do is layer on toxic pesticides that could undo all the benefits of your hard work. 

Use safer alternatives to banish pests, like neem oil, diatomaceous earth, and essential oils.

11. Assess for food intolerances.

Different from food allergies, food intolerances can be hard to detect.

An allergy specialist can help determine whether you’re actually allergic to a food. However, their tests will usually fail to detect a food intolerance.

If you suspect you might have an intolerance to a common food like wheat, dairy, or eggs, try eliminating that food in all forms for 30 days, and then adding it back in. Keep a diary of your symptoms so you can compare before and after.

12. Consider an Elimination Diet

If you suspect multiple food intolerances, one way to sort it out is with an elimination diet. This diet eliminates most of the known inflammatory offenders and then gradually adds foods back in to see which ones cause problems.  

The Autoimmune Protocol was made to treat autoimmune disorders, but it has become a tried-and-true elimination diet that can reduce inflammation in just a few days.

Downsides: This diet can be difficult to stick to, and the re-introduction phase can be long. 

13. Cook from scratch.

By cooking your own food from scratch (using only basic ingredients, and nothing pre-made), you’ll automatically eliminate a lot of the inflammatory chemicals and additives found in highly processed foods.

In the words of author Michael Pollen, “Eat all the junk food you want as long as you cook it yourself.”

14. Eat SMASH fish.

Wild Planet Sardines
Photo credit: Amazon.com

SMASH is an acronym for sardines, mackerel, anchovies, salmon, and herring. These are fatty fish that are safest to eat while being high in omega-3 fatty acids. 

Omega-3s have anti inflammatory effects on the body and are essential for brain development and cognitive health. Wild Planet is a good source of quality canned fatty fish.

15. Maintain a healthy body weight.

For those of us carrying extra body fat, the solution is not always as simple as eating less and moving more. But for some people, it really is that simple, and doing so could help you lower inflammation in the body.

If you know deep down that you could clean up your diet and move more to achieve a healthy body weight (defined by the CDC in the US as a BMI between 18.5 and 24.9), then take steps to do that. 

Start small if you have to. Exercise once this week, twice next week, etc., and look for ways to swap out some high-calorie foods for healthier options.

16. Choose grass-fed meats and pastured eggs.

Meat from grass-fed cows has been found to be higher in vitamins A, E, and heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids compared to conventional grain-fed cows.

Similarly, eggs from hens that spend time out on pasture in the sun are higher in omega-3s, vitamins D and E, and beta-carotene than conventional eggs.

17. Choose non toxic protein powders.

In 2022, a nonprofit group called the Clean Label Project released a report about toxins found in protein powders. (3)

The report revealed that a high percentage of commercial protein powders are contaminated with heavy metals like arsenic, cadmium, and lead. On their site, you’ll also find a list of protein powders they recommend.

18. Limit your rice consumption (or eat the right kind).

When rice is grown, it easily takes up arsenic from the soil and water. The result is food that is often contaminated with arsenic. Arsenic levels tend to vary based on the region where the rice is grown and the type of rice, with white rice (basmati, jasmine, and “instant”) being the safest.

You can minimize arsenic in rice by rinsing the rice before cooking, cooking the rice in extra water, and discarding the extra water.

Lundberg Rice tests its rice for arsenic and makes the results public on its website. 

19. Avoid refined seed/vegetable oils.

You may have heard that fried foods are bad for you. That’s because most fast-food restaurants use cheap soybean or peanut oil to fry their food.

Many vegetable and seed oils, found in bottled oils, processed foods, and margarine, are very high in omega 6 fatty acids, which are unstable and easily oxidized in the body. They contain linoleic acid, which is inflammatory and associated with many chronic health problems.  

Soybean, corn, cottonseed, peanut, sesame, rice bran, safflower, and sunflower oils, as well as canola and rapeseed oils, should be avoided. Instead, use healthy oils like olive oil and avocado oil, which have a lower percentage of omega 6 fats. 

Note: Until 2018, trans fats were commonly found in processed foods. After being linked to a number of health problems, including heart disease and obesity, trans fats were banned in the US.

20. Choose organic meal delivery services.

For the same reasons you would shop for organic foods, it makes sense to use organic meal delivery services. To meet USDA standards, organic foods are grown and made following strict rules that include less toxic exposure to hormones, antibiotics, and artificial or chemical ingredients.

A couple of popular organic meal delivery services to try are Blue Apron and Sunbasket.

21. Use herbs and spices in your cooking.

Herbs and spices

Don’t let the small dose fool you. Herbs and spices added routinely to the food you eat can have powerful anti inflammatory effects. Among those that have been well-researched are turmeric, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, rosemary, and green tea. 

22. Eat broccoli seed sprouts and okra.

Broccoli seed sprouts are high in sulforaphane, which has been shown to help detoxify airborne pollutants in the body. (4)

In the same way, the fiber in okra binds to toxins in the digestive tract, making it easier for your body to get rid of them on its own.

23. Avoid canned food (eat fresh or frozen instead).

Bisphenol A, or BPA, is a chemical that is often used to coat the inside of cans to keep food from touching the metal. Unfortunately, BPA is toxic and can migrate into canned food. 

BPA alternatives like bisphenol F (BPF) and bisphenol S (BPS) are often used instead so that manufacturers can claim a product is “BPA Free.” Great…except at least one study shows that BPS is even more toxic than BPA. (5)

If you can, avoid canned foods and buy fresh or frozen versions of the foods you use most often.

24. Drink green tea.

Green tea has natural compounds like polyphenols that fight free radicals, that are anti inflammatory in the body.  

Bonus: Green tea has been shown in multiple studies to reduce anxiety while improving memory. (6)

25. Moderate your intake of alcohol.

Heavy drinking can cause inflammation in the liver, pancreas, and GI tract, among other places in the body. Limit yourself to 1-2 drinks per day or less.

Finding it hard to limit your alcohol intake?  Read on, and learn how to manage your stress and get/give social support.

26. Manage your stress.

There are a couple of great ways to deal with life stress. One way is to get better at handling stress when it comes your way – think deep breathing, meditation, and yoga.  

Another strategy is to take steps to prevent stress from occurring in the first place. This might mean prepping meals ahead of time so you’re not scrambling at dinner time, or taking a course on public speaking so you don’t freeze when you’re making a presentation at work.

27. Get (and give) social support.

Emotional stress causes inflammation, which causes the body to make more cortisol to stop the effect. This process has many negative downstream effects on health.

Social support – both giving and receiving it – has the power to reduce inflammation in the body. (7) 

Look for and offer support amongst your friends and family, local support groups and volunteer opportunities, and places of worship or gathering.

28. Cleanse household surfaces and laundry of mold and bacteria.

About 25% of people are genetically susceptible to becoming ill after exposure to mold and mycotoxins (mold toxins). Early symptoms can include nasal congestion, coughing, asthma, headache, fatigue, and mood problems.

Fortunately, there are products formulated that treat indoor environments and laundry for mold and mycotoxins. 

EC3 Mold Solution Spray is great to have on hand, especially for people who suffer from chronic sinusitis or other mold-related ailments. It contains no harmful ingredients.

29. Mask up around mold.

If you know you’re going to be in a moldy area and you want to protect yourself from inhaling mycotoxins, a good face mask can help. 

Unicorn masks offer protection at 0.1 microns (lab tested, high breathability). By comparison, mold spores are around 10 microns in size, so these masks will keep them out.

30. Use a moisture meter.

Photo credit: Amazon.com

Water damage in a home or other building is the #1 reason for mold growth.

If you suspect you’ve had water damage in your home or workspace, or if you’re looking for a new home, a moisture meter is a great investment.

For about $40, you can identify moisture behind walls when there’s no obvious damage. This one (pictured above) is popular and easy to use.

31. Test your house for mold.

It is estimated that approximately 50% of buildings and homes in the United States have water damage severe enough to cause illness.

If you’ve had problematic symptoms (such as asthma, allergy symptoms that persist, headaches, or rashes) or your home has sustained water damage, there are several ways to look for mold.

Air testing is common, but can miss “heavier” mold spores that tend to settle on surfaces. An ERMI or HERTSMI test is a good place to start, and you can do it yourself.

32. Remediate mold you find in your home.

Mold can be very difficult to kill. Even bleach is ineffective for killing mold on porous surfaces, and makes the problem worse in the long run.

The best way to deal with a mold problem is to remediate it, which starts with getting rid of the mold. To avoid spreading toxic mold spores, it’s best to involve a professional mold remediation company in this process.

33. Monitor the humidity of your home.

If mold growth is a concern, maintain a humidity level in your home of less than 60% (ideally between 30% and 50%). Use a dehumidifier if necessary, and use the exhaust fan in your bathroom after bathing/showering.

34. Drink mold-free coffee.

Low-quality coffee tends to carry mycotoxins (mold). In fact, one study showed that over 90% of green coffee beans were contaminated with mold. (8) Fortunately, better coffee is available that is tested for toxins and expertly roasted. 

It costs a little more than supermarket coffee, but you can rest assured knowing you’re drinking the good stuff. Bulletproof Coffee, for example, is sustainably sourced, Rainforest Alliance Certified, and tested for toxins.

35. Find clean (mold-free) hotel rooms when traveling.

Pure Wellness can help you find a hotel that makes it a priority to keep the air clean and maintain a hypoallergenic environment.

36. Use a sauna.

Having a sauna doesn’t just feel great after a workout or a shower. Research shows that sweating is an effective way to eliminate heavy metals and BPA (toxins from plastics). (9, 10) 

Don’t have access to a walk-in sauna? There are all kinds of affordable options, including portable saunas and sauna blankets, which can offer similar benefits.

37. Use targeted supplements.

There is a dizzying array of health supplements to choose from these days. To narrow the field and find the ones that will actually help lower inflammation in the body or relieve symptoms you have, we recommend a two-part elimination process. 

First, follow the science: learn which types of supplements have been shown in rigorous studies to help. Second, find a company that offers a high-quality version of that supplement. 

To reduce inflammation, some of the best supplements to consider are curcumin, omega 3 fish oil, resveratrol, and vitamin D.

38. Buy supplements that have a Certificate of Analysis (COA).

COAs are documents intended to confirm that a regulated product is what it says on the label, and nothing more or less. Without a COA supplements can be falsely advertised, and contamination with toxic ingredients, like heavy metals, can go unreported.

Thorne, Designs for Health, Pure, and Douglas Labs are all trustworthy brands of supplements that will gladly give you a COA for any product they sell.

39. Avoid amalgam dental fillings (or have yours removed).

Amalgam (silver) dental fillings are about 50% mercury. Today, most dentists use composite fillings instead of silver, which gets rid of the problem with mercury. However, some dentists still use silver.

If you’re getting a tooth filled be sure to specify that you want composite fillings.

Still have a mouthful of mercury fillings from childhood? It is fairly easy to get rid of silver fillings and replace them with less toxic materials. This can reduce the amount of mercury you are exposed to.

Be sure to find a good biological dentist through IAOMT.org (International Association of Oral & Maxillary Toxicologists).

40. See an integrative or functional medicine doctor.

Doctor

If you’ve ever found yourself sick with symptoms that are at all mysterious, you may have asked your doctor for help, only to be offered medication that treats the symptoms but ignores the source of the problem.  

Doctors trained in integrative or functional medicine are much more likely to look for the cause of the problem, rather than simply treating the symptoms.

The Institute for Functional Medicine database is a good place to find a practitioner, or you can Google “integrative doctor near me.”

41. Talk to your doctor about nagging symptoms.

Don’t just tolerate symptoms – discuss them with your doctor. That symptom may be the signal of a bigger problem brewing, and treating it might make all the difference.

For example, obstructive sleep apnea, which is linked to inflammation and organ dysfunction, affects about 20% of the US adult population, and about 90% of them are undiagnosed. (11) 

If you’ve been told you snore or wake up gasping for breath, it’s worth requesting a sleep study from your doctor.

42. Get your iron tested.

Iron is an important part of our diet, but some people get too much iron and have trouble getting rid of it. This can lead to iron overload, which can cause inflammation and harm your health.

Ask your doctor to test your ferritin level. You can also order your own blood test through either Ulta Lab Tests or Walk-In Lab in the US.

Ferritin is your body’s long-term storage form of iron and doesn’t fluctuate as much as a direct iron test. If your ferritin level is high, consider donating blood every few months. It’s an altruistic act that helps someone else, and your health will benefit too.

43. Control your blood sugar.

Uncontrolled high blood sugar can contribute to further inflammation in the body. If your doctor has told you that you’re pre-diabetic or diabetic, take steps to control your blood sugar. 

This might mean taking regular blood glucose readings, taking medication, or changing to a low-carb diet. A good general practice is to eat carbohydrate foods along with protein and fat, which slow the absorption of the carbs into your system.

Also avoid that “hangry” feeling, which is a sign your blood sugar is dropping too low. If you’re prone to this unpleasant experience, carry snacks with you – especially foods that are high in fiber and protein, like nuts and cheese or raw veggies and hummus.

44. Limit your intake of sugar and refined carbs.

Sugar and refined carbohydrates cause spikes in blood sugar levels, which can lead to inflammation. To help keep inflammation at bay, limit your intake of these foods and focus on eating more complex carbs instead.

45. Eat more fiber.

Fiber helps keep inflammation-causing toxins out of your system, so aim for at least 25 grams of fiber per day. Good sources of fiber include fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.

46. Balance your hormones.

Hormone dysregulation is incredibly common and can include problems with thyroid hormones, stress hormones (like cortisol), and sex hormones (like estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone).  

Based on your symptoms, a good functional medicine doctor can help you decide if you need to get your hormones checked.

47. Use a Squatty Potty.

Having regular and complete bowel movements is important for digestion, getting rid of waste, and detoxification. Yet about 16% of adults in the US have constipation. (12)

The Squatty Potty can help.

The Squatty Potty is a stool kept near the toilet on which to position your feet when you have to go, putting the user’s legs into more of a squatting position.

In one study, 90% of users said they didn’t have to strain as much, and 71% said they went to the bathroom faster. (13)

48. Use castor oil packs.

Castor oil, when applied topically to the abdomen, is absorbed through the skin, increasing the circulation of the lymphatic system. They help with reducing inflammation, detoxification, and prevention of chronic diseases.

Not sure how to go about putting together a castor oil pack without making a mess? Queen of the Thrones makes it easy, with kits designed for kids, adults, and practitioners.

49. Dry brush your skin.

Dry brushing helps the body get rid of toxins by increasing blood flow and lymph flow and drainage. It also feels great, and unclogs pores in the skin, making it easier for the body to sweat.

50. Try rebounding.

Rebounding – essentially bouncing on a small trampoline – is great for simulating the lymphatic system, increasing lymph flow, and promoting detoxification. Plus, it strengthens the skeletal system, relieves stress, and improves balance.

We recommend getting a rebounder with a balance bar for safety. You’ll see excellent results with just 10-15 minute sessions, 3-5 times a week.

51. Do grounding.

While controversial in the scientific community, grounding – essentially walking barefoot outdoors – has shown promise in the recent research literature as a free, easily accessible method for quickly reducing inflammation in the body. (14) 

Too cold to go out with bare feet? Try using a grounding mat indoors.

52. Use warm indoor lighting at night.

Your sleep-wake cycle, or circadian rhythm, can be messed up by too much cool-colored light at night. This includes the light that comes from LED and fluorescent lights, as well as computer and “screen” light. 

This in turn can lead to immune dysfunction and neurological problems. If you need lights at night, use incandescent light instead, which has a red/orange hue and won’t disrupt sleep.

53. Use color-warming filters on electronic devices after sunset.

To avoid circadian rhythm disruption caused by blue/cool light at night, adjust the settings of your phone, tablet, and computer using Nightshift (iOS) or Night Light (Android/Windows). 

Even better, take a break from screens for the hour or two leading up to bedtime.

54. Get the formaldehyde out of new clothes.

Are you aware that big clothing chains often add formaldehyde, a xenobiotic air pollutant, to their clothing? It’s used to enhance wrinkle resistance and make them look nice in the store. 

And unlike many other countries, the US does not regulate the amount of formaldehyde that can be used in new clothes. 

Be sure to wash clothes before wearing them, and if you’re particularly sensitive to chemicals, a combination of powdered milk, vinegar, and baking soda can be used to get the formaldehyde out.

55. Rethink your dry cleaning.

Traditional dry cleaning involves harmful chemicals, including tetrachloroethylene (commonly known as “Perc”). Perc is labeled as a probable human carcinogen and has been linked to a higher risk of Parkinson’s disease and some types of cancer.

Unfortunately, “organic” solvents aren’t much better. Instead, find a dry cleaner that offers the “liquid CO2 method” or professional wet cleaning.

56. Get rid of household pests using essential oils.

There are safe and natural ways to keep mice and insects from invading your home without the use of toxic chemicals that could pollute your air or surfaces.

Instead, you can use cotton balls dipped in essential oils that are known to repel specific pests, including lavender, basil, peppermint, thyme, and pine. Be sure to use therapeutic-grade essential oils, like Rocky Mountain Oils.

57. Use non toxic bug spray.

You can make your own essential oil mosquito repellent (takes 5 minutes) and carry a small spray bottle with you when you’re outside. We’ve used the recipe from Our Paleo Life with good success. 

Not interested in a DIY project or fussing with little bottles of essential oils? The Environmental Working Group recommends tick and other insect repellents with picaridin, DEET, or IR3535 because they are safe and work well against ticks and other insects that bite.

58. Use non toxic food storage containers.

stainless steel food storage
Photo credit: Amazon.com

Plastic food storage containers can leach harmful chemicals like bisphenol A (BPA), PBS, PCBs, styrene, dioxins, and phthalates into your food.

Instead, use glass or stainless steel food storage containers, and avoid all of those hormone-disrupting chemicals.

59. Stop putting plastic in the microwave.

Even plastic marked as “microwave safe” shouldn’t be used to heat food in the microwave. “Microwave-safe” just means the plastic won’t melt when exposed to heat. It does not mean it won’t leech harmful chemicals into your food. 

Stick with glass or ceramic dishes or bowls for heating food. Our favorite are Corelle dishes – they’re made with lightweight tempered glass, and they simply don’t break very often.

60. Use non toxic cookware.

Most non-stick pans have a Teflon coating that is sealed with PFOA and PFOS, which are chemicals that are bad for your health. They have been linked to cancer, immune system damage, birth defects, and many other serious illnesses.

Better options for cooking include non toxic pots and pans made with ceramic, stainless steel, and cast iron. 

61. Stop using vintage dishes for food.

Vintage cookware or dishware is often contaminated with lead and other heavy metals. The FDA set regulations for lead in 1971, but even items produced after that are suspect. 

For example, Corelle recommends that you stop using their dinnerware from before 2005 due to concerns about high levels of lead.

New white Corelle dishes are testing lead-free, as are new Libbey and Anchor Hocking dishware sets.

62. Mitigate electromagnetic fields (EMFs).

While many researchers take the position that EMFs are not dangerous, there is mounting scientific evidence that EMFs can have a negative effect on health. (15)

Since wireless internet, cell towers, and power lines are everywhere, it’s not easy to stay away from them. 

You might want to use an EMF meter in your home to find ways to reduce your exposure. Unplugging the wifi at night is a simple step to take.

63. Get a dog.

Most people get a dog for companionship, but there are side benefits that can result in improved health. Dog ownership is associated with increased walking and sun exposure, as well as some unexpected (and positive) effects on the immune system.

One study found that petting a dog for 18 minutes can raise IgA, an antibody that helps protect against infection. (16)

64. Open your windows.

It’s easy for our homes to accumulate dust, mold spores, moisture, and other air pollutants. 

The easiest way to breathe cleaner air is to simply open the windows of your home to dilute indoor pollutants. A more expensive but also effective strategy is to invest in a good home air purifier.

65. Use an air purifier in your home.

A quality home air purifier can greatly reduce the risk that you’re breathing in toxic fumes, mold spores, odors, viruses, smoke, and dust. The use of a good air filter can reduce inflammatory markers in the blood while improving sleep and reducing breathing problems. (17)

An excellent brand for air purifiers is Air Doctor. They have a variety of sizes and can filter down to 0.003 microns in size, capturing even very tiny airborne particles.

66. Leave your shoes at the door.

Shoes at the door

Many cultures routinely take off their shoes when entering a home. However, Americans often wear their shoes inside, tracking in contaminants, chemicals, metals, and harmful pathogens that are better left outside. 

Consider leaving a stash of slippers near the door to make a smooth transition to indoor wear.

67. Use a negative ion generator.

Negative air ions can reduce harmful particulates in the air. This 2020 study found that increased negative air ions improved respiratory function and anti inflammatory capacity in children. (18)

68. Stop using air fresheners (or choose non toxic versions).

Most air fresheners have volatile organic compounds, which add toxic chemicals like formaldehyde, benzene, and phthalates to the air inside your home. There are also problems with aerosol propellants. 

Instead, look for non toxic air fresheners made using plant oils and activated charcoal.

69. Buy a non toxic mattress.

Most new mattresses contain harmful chemicals, including fire-retardant chemicals, benzene, and formaldehyde. Studies show these compounds are associated with all kinds of ailments and developmental disorders. 

Instead, opt for an organic or non toxic mattress, which is naturally flame resistant and healthier for you. A couple of great natural mattress brands to consider are Naturepedic and Avocado.

70. Care for your pillows and bedding.

Have you ever awakened with a stuffy nose when you didn’t go to bed with one? Your pillow may be a source of allergens, including dust, mold, and bacteria.

Wash your bedding every week, get new pillows every 2 years, and use hypoallergenic pillows to reduce your exposure to allergens. 

It’s also a good idea to get a hypoallergenic dust mite pillow cover to create a barrier between you and dust mites. And if you’re serious about living non toxic, look into getting pesticide-free, pigment-free, and bleach-free organic bedding.

71. Buy non toxic furniture.

It may be better to look at non toxic furniture as a long-term investment, rather than a quick fix. Look for solid wood items with low-VOC or zero-VOC stains, varnishes, and adhesives, and avoid items with stain-resistant chemicals and formaldehyde.

72. Use non toxic candles.

As is often the case with scented items, the ingredients in typical candles carry allergens and phthalates into the air you breathe. 

Instead, look for candles scented with essential oils, and avoid those that list the general term “fragrance” on the label.

73. Use air purification candles.

Unlike most candles that pollute the air in the home, these specialty candles by EC3 reduce mold counts and airborne mycotoxins, decreasing the risk of chronic inflammation and allergic reactions.

The heat from the flame aerosolizes a natural mold-fighting botanical embedded in the soy wax.

74. Vacuum rugs and carpets.

Vacuum

Rugs and carpets can up the coziness factor in a home, but also tend to trap dirt and debris that can promote mold growth, exacerbate allergies, and contaminate your air. 

A general rule of thumb is to vacuum hardwood and tile floors once a week and carpeted floors twice a week, ideally with a HEPA vacuum.

75. Practice non toxic lawn care.

Commonly used weed killers like dioxin, glyphosate, and paraquat have all been linked to inflammation and serious illness. Instead, look for a selective non toxic and organic weed killer. These are bad for weeds, but fine for your lawn, kids, and pets.

76. Avoid walking/running/biking on busy roads.

Pollutants like VOCs, nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide, and particulate matter are put into the air by cars, trucks, and buses. Each of these can have a big impact on your immune system and the amount of inflammation in the body. 

Exercise instead on less-trafficked roads, in parks, or indoors.

77. Eliminate dryer sheets and liquid fabric softener.

When it comes to household products, dryer sheets and liquid fabric softeners contain some of the highest concentrations of harmful fragrance chemicals. 

Alternatives that you can use instead: Toss a few wool dryer balls in with the load (add a few drops of essential oil optional), or add ¼ cup of white vinegar to the wash’s rinse cycle.

78. Use a fabric or PVC-free shower curtain and liner.

Many shower curtains and liners are made of PVC plastic, which can give off a lot of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), exceeding guidelines for indoor air quality. The result can be damage to the central nervous system and other organs, headaches, and nausea. 

Look for PVC-free shower curtains and liners instead.

79. Follow lead-safe practices for home renovation.

If your home was built prior to 1978, it likely has lead paint buried under layers of newer paint or wallpaper. Just a small amount of lead dust is enough to elevate inflammation and compromise your health for years to come. 

When hiring contractors – or if you’re starting a major DIY painting, repair, or renovation project – be aware of lead-safe practices

80. Install non toxic carpeting.

New carpeting emits volatile organic compounds (VOCs), harmful gasses and chemicals that are released into the air and can have serious health implications. Most off-gassing takes place within the first 72 hours after installation, but carpeting can emit VOCs for several years. 

For your next flooring project, consider non toxic carpeting or other options altogether, like laminate, tile, or hardwood.

81. Use non toxic rugs.

Like carpets, rugs can off-gas and pollute the air in your home with toxins. In addition, rugs made with synthetic fabrics like polypropylene, nylon, and polyester require a lot of chemicals to make them stain-proof, insect-repellant, and fire-retardant. 

Instead, shop for rugs that are made with natural fibers (like wool, cotton, and sisal) and free of adhesives. Look for “100% non toxic” on the label.

82. Use zero-VOC paints and stains.

New paint, like new carpet, gives off volatile organic compounds into the air. These compounds are known to be bad for your health and cause inflammation. (19)

Federal regulations in the US have resulted in most paint being relatively low VOC, but why stop there? Look for zero-VOC paints and stains for your next home improvement project.

83. Use non toxic dish soap.

Dishwashing

Regular dish soap is usually full of toxic ingredients like sodium lauryl/laureth sulfate (SLS), dipropylene glycol, polysorbate-20, and sodium polyacrylate, among others. 

These ingredients are known to cause cancer, respiratory problems, skin irritation, and endocrine problems.

Some better brands to try instead, given an “A” rating by the Environmental Working Group, include 9 Elements, Attitude, and Common Good.

84. Use non toxic dishwasher detergent.

Dishwasher detergent, like liquid dish soap, is typically loaded with chemicals that we really don’t need touching our plates and silverware. 

If you love the convenience of dishwasher pods, some good alternative brands to look for include Seventh Generation, AspenClean, and Love Home & Planet.

85. Use non toxic bathroom cleaners.

Like most conventional cleaners, the sprays and cleansers available for use in the tub, sink, and toilet are loaded with endocrine-disrupting and cancer-causing ingredients – not the kind of stuff you want in the air of the smallest room in your house. 

Brands to look for that offer a much safer ingredient list include AspenClean, Attitude, and 9 Elements. For cleaning the toilet, look for Seventh Generation and Nature’s Promise brands.

You can also just pour some white vinegar into the bowl, let it sit for a bit, and then scrub it with baking soda.

86. Do non toxic carpet cleaning.

Most carpet cleaners have chemicals like perchloroethylene (“Perc”), naphthalene, and butyloxy ethanol, which have all been linked to organ damage.

Instead, look for one that has a safer ingredient list, like Simple Green Naturals Carpet Care, the only carpet cleaning solution that gets an “A” rating from the Environmental Working Group.

87. Make your own cleaning products.

You can find a lot of recipes online for cleaning products you can make yourself to cut down on the harsh and irritating chemicals in your home.

No time to play mixologist? Look for brands that make the EPA’s Safer Choice List or see what the Environmental Working Group recommends (choose from “EWG Verified” and “A” level products for the least toxic options).

88. Exercise.

Even a 20-minute walk can lower the body’s inflammatory response. Other research-backed options are cycling, resistance training, swimming, and yoga. 

89. Get 7-8 hours of sleep per night.

When life gets busy or we need a little extra “me” time, sleep is often the first thing that suffers. It’s just so easy to trim an hour here or there, despite our silent promises to make it up the next night.

The harsh truth is that chronically insufficient sleep can have a direct negative effect on immune cells, promoting inflammation. Prioritize your Zzz’s. Consider it the ultimate act of self-care.

90. Avoid working the night shift.

Research shows that people who work the 2nd and 3rd shifts are at higher risk of chronic inflammation. (20) Try to work first-shift hours instead and sleep when it’s dark outside.

91. Spend time outside in the sun.

Sun

We’ve been taught to fear the sun, and it’s certainly wise to avoid too much sun exposure. But getting just the right amount of sun helps the body make vitamin D, which reduces inflammation in the body.

Shoot for 15 minutes a day in the sun (but be cautious to avoid burning!).

92. Quit smoking (and avoid 2nd hand smoke).

Studies show that smoking cigarettes, vaping, and exposure to second-hand smoke are all problems when it comes to increased inflammation. (21,22,23)

The good news is that quitting smoking can reduce inflammation in as little as two weeks. (24)

93. Do time-restricted eating.

Sometimes called “intermittent fasting,” time-restricted eating (TRE) limits your eating window each day to a specific number of hours (for example, an 8-hour eating window followed by a 16-hour fast). 

Numerous studies have reported that TRE results in reductions in inflammation and oxidative stress, as well as the prevention of and reversal of chronic diseases.

A good place to start is limiting your eating window to 12 hours, followed by a 12-hour fast. Once you’re comfortable with that, narrow the eating window to 10 or even 8 hours.

94. Use red LED lights for healing and reducing inflammation.

Red light therapy is also known as “photobiomodulation” (PBM) or “low-level laser therapy” (LLLT). It uses wavelengths of red and near-infrared (NIR) light to reach the skin and cells. (25)

The light stimulates the mitochondria, which make energy. The result is faster healing and reduced inflammation and discomfort.

Red light therapy can be applied to small, medium, or large parts of the body using handheld devices and light panels of varying sizes.

95. Don’t touch receipts.

Cash register receipts – the kind you get from most stores – are coated with bisphenol A (BPA). Studies have found that individual thermal receipts can contain BPA in amounts that are 250-1000 times greater than the amount in a can of food. (26)

Ask the cashier to put the receipt in the bag, or to simply throw it away and not give it to you at all. Opt for email receipts when shopping with companies that offer them. If you work as a cashier, wear gloves.

96. Use apps to find non toxic products.

To help you find non toxic products on the spot – while you’re standing right there in the shampoo aisle at the store, download the Think Dirty App.

It’s free, and you can use it to scan a product’s barcode to get the “Dirty Meter” report on the ingredients, as well as suggestions for cleaner alternatives.

Another great free app to try is EWG’s Healthy Living App which includes skin care, hair care, and cleaning products in its database.

97. Use non toxic cosmetics.

The cosmetics industry in the US continues to permit the use of toxic ingredients that have been banned in the EU and other parts of the world. Common toxic chemicals in cosmetics include formaldehyde, mercury, phthalates, and parabens. 

Some stores, like Whole Foods and CVS, have started prohibiting the use of some of these ingredients in the products they sell.

98. Use non toxic sunscreen.

There are some bad UV filters in sunscreen. Oxybenzone is the worst of the bunch, but homosalate and octocrylene are also bad.

The European Union limits the concentration of these ingredients to between 1.4 and 2.2 percent, while the US allows much higher concentrations.

In 2019, the FDA reported that only two active sunscreen ingredients, zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, could be called safe and effective.

Consider using these safe options found in brands like Unsun and Grown Alchemist, or covering up/finding shade between the peak sun hours of 11AM to 2PM.

99. Use non toxic body wash.

body wash

The list of toxic ingredients found in standard commercial body washes is long, and includes sulfates, parabens, phthalates, formaldehyde, and synthetic fragrances. 

Better brands for non toxic body wash include Grown Alchemist, Tropic, and Kosmatology.

100. Use non toxic shampoo and conditioner.

Like body wash, the commercial shampoos and conditioners you see on the store shelves are loaded with ingredients that disrupt hormones and increase stress on our immune systems. 

To find a non toxic shampoo and conditioner that smell great and do the job, look to brands like Innersense, Viori, Grown Alchemist, and Rocky Mountain Soap Company.

101. Use non toxic hair dye.

If dying your hair is a routine part of your beauty maintenance routine, you’ll want to avoid at least some of the toxic ingredients found in the regular brands on the store shelves.

Ingredients like ammonia, SLS/SLES, fragrance, phthalates, and PPD have caused hair dye to be linked to immune system activation and cancer. (27,28)

Some safer options include henna dyes like the ones by Light Mountain, Naturally Brite, and Desert Shadow.

102. Use non toxic perfume.

Perfumes and colognes are loaded with chemical ingredients known to harm health, including styrene, phthalates, and benzyl acetate.

And – according to the Environmental Working Group – the average perfume contains 14 “secret” chemicals that don’t even appear on the label. 

To find better alternatives, look for “100% natural” and “organic” perfumes, without synthetic ingredients included. Note that “clean” perfumes often do contain so-called “clean” synthetics, many of which are actually untested.

103. Use non toxic deodorant.

Most conventional deodorants and antiperspirants rely on parabens, triclosan, phthalates, and aluminum to keep you feeling fresh. 

There are some great non toxic deodorant brands out there, like Native, Real Purity, and Ursa Major. Many natural deodorants also contain baking soda and other natural drying agents to help keep you dry, but they don’t actually stop you from sweating.

104. Buy from companies that fully disclose their fragrance ingredients.

Companies can (and do) hide a lot of toxic secrets under the umbrella term “fragrance”. Look for brands that believe in transparency and disclose everything you’ll be putting on your skin, like Acure, Silk Therapeutics, and Beautycounter.

105. Use non toxic nail polish.

nail polish

Conventional nail polish contains toxic ingredients like dibutyl phthalate, toluene and formaldehyde.

The Environmental Working Group’s skin deep app reports that at least some varieties of Piggy Paint, SOPHi and Ella+Mila brands are low in toxic ingredients.

FAQs

What is the difference between acute and chronic inflammation?

Acute inflammation is a normal response to an injury or infection. It helps to protect the body by fighting off foreign invaders and promoting healing. 

On the other hand, chronic inflammation is a long-term condition that can lead to a number of health problems. It happens when the immune system stays on high alert even when there is no injury or infection. 

This can lead to inflammation of the joints, digestive problems, and even heart disease. Acute inflammation is a normal and helpful reaction, but long-term inflammation can be very bad for your health.

What reduces inflammation fast?

One of the best ways to reduce inflammation is to clean up your environment. That means getting rid of pollutants in the air and water, as well as introducing anti inflammatory foods into your diet. 

Exercise is also a powerful tool for reducing inflammation, as it helps to improve circulation and remove toxins from the body. In addition, certain supplements can also be helpful in reducing inflammation.

Omega-3 fatty acids, turmeric, and ginger are all known for their anti inflammatory properties. 

What are the 5 classic signs of inflammation?

Heat, redness, swelling, pain, and loss of function are the five most common signs of acute inflammation.  But the signs of inflammation that lasts for a long time can be harder to spot and vary from person to person.

Chronic inflammation can cause body pain, arthralgia (pain in the joints), myalgia (pain in the muscles), chronic fatigue, insomnia, depression, anxiety, and mood disorders, among other things. 

Gastrointestinal complications such as constipation, diarrhea, and acid reflux are also common. Weight gain or weight loss can also occur, as can frequent infections.

What are the top 10 inflammatory foods?

What is inflammatory for one person may be just fine for someone else. For example, some people get inflamed when they eat dairy or nuts, but other people can handle these foods well.

However, nearly everyone will benefit by avoiding these inflammatory foods: 

  • Excessive sugar
  • Processed meats (like hot dogs)
  • Highly processed foods (most of the stuff in the middle aisles of the supermarket)
  • Synthetic sweeteners (like aspartame)
  • Unhealthy fats (omega 6 fats and trans fats) 
  • Excessive alcohol
  • Fried foods
  • Food additives (like MSG and preservatives)
  • Food from fast food restaurants

Conclusion

Acute inflammation is normal and helps the body heal, but when it lasts for a long time, it can cause a number of health problems.

If you’re struggling with chronic inflammation in the body, then making dietary changes, exercising regularly, getting enough sleep, and managing stress are all anti inflammatory. Try incorporating these and more of the strategies above into your daily routine to help keep inflammation in the body at bay.


References

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