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1st Jul


Why a Special Diet Can Decrease Pain and Improve Your Health

We all get bombarded with claims and information about why a good diet is important, and what constitutes an effective diet. However, although there is some agreement amongst “experts”, there are also many varied opinions. As a result, many people rightfully become skeptical about what they hear and read, and do not take positive steps to change their diets.

As a result of my recent personal health issue, I have been fortunate to work with Didrik Sopler, PhD, who is a nutritional clinician, acupuncturist, and nutritional instructor for the Residency and Fellowship Orthopedic Manual Therapy programs at the Ola Grimsby Institute. After analyzing my blood work, health history and what I previously believed to be a healthy diet, I have drastically changed what I eat. Early results are clear: Improved blood panels, good energy, and less arthritic pain.

Today, it is recognized that low grade chronic inflammation is a potential cause of many forms of disease. Furthermore, as low grade inflammation increases, so does pain, whether from arthritis, tendinitis or other musculoskeletal problems. Other possible resulting diseases including osteoporosis, cardiovascular disease, cancer, dementia, depression, and age-related macular degeneration and cataract, according to published research.

Dr. Sopler has explained that low grade inflammation can be caused by anything that chronically activates our immune system, such as chronic bacterial or viral infections, periodontal disease, stress, and commonly, food allergies or intolerance. New research has for example indicated that gluten in foods may trigger inflammation in everybody, regardless of symptoms.

A major cause of systemic inflammation today is related to insulin resistance, Dr. Sopler explains. This means that the insulin becomes less able to transfer glucose into our cells, resulting in more production of insulin by the pancreas. This most commonly occurs with intake of certain foods and with insufficient exercise.

Foods with a high glycemic index are absorbed fast, and can lead to such a reaction, if consumed over a long period of time. Another common side effect is weight gain. If insulin resistance gets severe enough, it can turn into type 2 diabetes, but it can cause much damage even if the glucose level does not reach even a pre-diabetic level. As was the case with me, fasting glucose starts to increase, although it may still be within a “normal level”. Again, this goes along with chronic inflammation. The glucose also starts to react with protein, causing damaged tissue, or glycosylated protein. This in turn adds to the chronic inflammation.

What Dr. Sopler proposed to me, which I have followed, is a low glycemic index diet, removing grains such as bread, cereal, pasta etc from my diet, and replacing it with various beans and lentils to add to wholesome salads, good fats, fish, chicken, turkey, eggs etc and cutting out gluten. I am actually enjoying this diet quite a bit.

The wonderful thing about all this, is that changing your diet is perhaps the fastest and certainly healthiest way to reduce chronic low grade inflammation, and a way that we ourselves can make that happen.

Dr. Sopler also effectively uses these principles for weight loss, and he applies nutritional science to athletic performance as well. I strongly recommend for anybody interested to consult with him. His website is

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