Harvard Health — Quick-start guide to an anti‑inflammation diet

Published: May, 2020

There are no complicated rules to follow. Just be mindful of general dos and don’ts.

Chronic inflammation — a state of persistent activation of the immune system — is an important part of many diseases, and diet is a big contributor to inflammation. It would make sense, then, to follow what’s becoming known as the “anti-inflammation diet.” Just one problem: “There isn’t ‘one’ diet, although many people love to throw that term around. The diet in general is almost as much about what you don’t eat as what you do eat,” says Eric Rimm, a professor of epidemiology and nutrition at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

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Are You Tired of the “Happy Birthday” Song?

Recite the Metta Meditation as You Wash Your Hands

If you are tired of singing the Happy Birthday song as you practice good handwashing technique, use that time for a short meditation break.

Metta Meditation

May all beings be happy.
May all beings be healthy.
May all beings be free from suffering.
May all beings be at peace.

Repeat the meditation twice slowly and mindfully. (If you are inclined to rush, repeat it three times.)

The Benefits

In addition to the benefits of good handwashing, using the Metta Meditation calms and refocuses mind and body.  It sends positive energy into a world that desperately needs it.

The Research


Suzanne’s Lament

Many years ago, when I was an undergraduate I saw an environmental film called Suzanne’s Lament. The images stuck with me.

I was reminded of it again as we approach the 50th anniversary of the first Earth Day.

I went on a quest to track it down. (It’s something librarians do…)

I did some digging and found that the film is still available.

Suzanne’s Lament

This program is based on detailed field work carried out in 1969 and 1970 along the south-central coast of Alaska by a team of coastal geologists associated with the Geology Department of the University of Massachusetts. Miles O. Hayes, the originator of the concept, took some outstanding photographs of the Alaska coast in February 1970. By then, Hayes and his team, who up to that time had worked on developed coasts in Texas, New Jersey, and New England, after seeing the pristine conditions along the Alaska coast, began to compare it to the previously studied developed coasts. Then, they started thinking about how to preserve the Alaska coast in its natural state as much as possible. Accordingly, Hayes used the slides taken during the February 1970 field trip and compared select ones of them with photos of developed coasts.
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