Dr. Weil introduces himself, explains if certain food can cause inflammation, and shares why women should be concerned about excess inflammation.
I am Dr. Andrew Weil, Director of the Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine. I am a clinical professor of medicine and professor of public health at the University of Arizona and my field of expertise is integrative medicine.
I think, in general refined, processed, and manufactured foods are pro-inflammatory and that’s because they contain fats that increase inflammation. And those fats are things like vegetable shortening, partially hydrogenated vegetable oils, as well as refined vegetable oils, like soybean oil, which give an excess of omega-6 fatty acids, which are the pro-inflammatory essential fatty acids. Quick digesting carbohydrates, products made from flour and sugar are pro-inflammatory by a different mechanism. Diets that are deficient in fruits and vegetables also favor inflammation.
The reason women should be concerned about this, really everybody, but women in particular, is that inflammation undermines health in general, affects longevity, appearance, chronic inflammation in the skin is really the basis of premature aging and certainly a strong influence on appearance as women get older. And, inflammation in the body, if it’s not checked, really can eventually result in most of the chronic degenerative diseases, cardiovascular disease, cancer, and neurodegenerative disease.
About Dr. Weil, M.D.:
Dr. Andrew Weil, M.D., was born in Philadelphia in 1942, received an A.B. degree in biology (botany) from Harvard in 1964 and an M.D. from Harvard Medical School in 1968. After completing a medical internship at Mt. Zion Hospital in San Francisco, he worked a year with the National Institute of Mental Health before writing his first book, The Natural Mind. From 1971-75, as a Fellow of the Institute of Current World Affairs, Dr. Weil traveled widely in North and South America and Africa collecting information on drug use in other cultures, medicinal plants, and alternative methods of treating disease. From 1971-84 he was on the research staff of the Harvard Botanical Museum and conducted investigations of medicinal and psychoactive plants.