About Inflammation

Dietary inflammation is your body's reaction to consuming anti- or pro-inflammatory foods. Consuming a more anti-inflammatory diet reduces inflammation in the body and improves overall health.

  • Acute inflammation typically occurs when there is an injury to the body.It usually has a sudden onset, but is temporary in nature. Examples or symptoms of acute inflammation might be a sore throat, appendicitis or the tenderness that occurs when one develops a hangnail.

  • Chronic inflammation builds up over time and is a long-lasting or sometimes permanent situation.Besides making one feel achy and lethargic, chronic inflammation in the body leads to other, more serious medical conditions. Examples or symptoms of chronic inflammation may include arthritis, ulcers or weight gain.

A large, persuasive, and ever-increasing body of scientific evidence links chronic inflammation to virtually all of the diseases that cause the majority of disability and death in the U.S., including diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and cancer. Combined, these conditions affect well over 50% of the population in the United States alone.  Research has shown, however, that many of these conditions are largely preventable or mitigated through adopting a less inflammatory diet.

Once a grade has been assigned to a whole food, there is a set of easy to read icons for each one that can be used for food packaging and labels.

About the DII

The DII™ was created to measure how inflammatory foods are to your body and organs, thus providing guidelines to consumers and doctors. The has been established as an effective research tool to measure the inflammatory potential of people’s diet. As a research tool, the DII™ has been used in a variety of populations to predict a variety of chronic diseases like cancers, cardiovascular diseases, deaths etc.

Dietary inflammation has been clinically studied and documented for more than 25 years by Dr. James R. Hébert of the Cancer Prevention & Control Program at the University of South Carolina. The DII is uniquely and strongly based on empirical evidence available in the peer-reviewed literature on the relationships between dietary factors and important inflammatory markers (see Derivation/ Computation). It is important to note, however, that, as an index that superimposes on a method of dietary assessment, the DII is dependent on the accuracy of the dietary assessment method used. The DII cannot make up for deficiencies/ inaccuracies in measuring dietary intake.

“Scientific Literature” is the aggregate of written and published records that are generated by research or theoretical summarizations and are circulated to inform specialists on the latest achievements of science and on the progress and results of research. Regardless of the specific area of science, the subject of scientific literature is science itself—ideas and the facts, laws, and categories discovered by scientists. Academic publishing is the process of placing the results of one's research into the literature. Original scientific research published for the first time in scientific journals is called the primary literature. A scientific study is considered to be incomplete until its results have been recorded in written form for dissemination. Publication of a scientific work is essential in cases of a question concerning the establishment of scientific priority.

Please click here to visit CHI’s corporate website for a comprehensive list of journal articles and scientific literature published by Dr. Hebert and his team.

C-reactive protein (CRP) is one of the plasma proteins known as acute-phase proteins: proteins whose plasma concentrations increase (or decrease) by 25% or more during inflammatory disorders. CRP can rise as high as 1000-fold with inflammation. (Source: www.medicinenet.com)

A biologic feature that can be used to measure the presence or progress of disease or the effects of treatment. For example, prostate specific antigen (PSA) is a biomarker for cancer of the prostate. (Source: www.medicinenet.com)

While a prescription is not required to participate in IMAGINE, we encourage you to speak to your physician or nutritionist regarding the benefits of reducing inflammation.Health professionals can also reach out to us directly for additional detailed information.

The DII™ score is computed from what individuals tell us about what they eat.These dietary data can come from recall interviews or from a questionnaire – either a full-length food frequency questionnaire or from the DII-onDemand™. We then take the information on food intake that individuals provide and link it to our large nutrient database in order to derive nutrient intake values. We then take 45 food parameters (35 of which are nutrients and 10 of which are whole foods and spices) and link them to the inflammatory effect scores for each of the 45 food parameters for which we have estimates of inflammatory potential based on our extensive review of the literature. 1 These are then summed up to get the overall DII™ score for an individual.

The Dietary Inflammatory Index (DII™)™ is the index used to measure how inflammatory foods are to your body and organs. It is derived through a complex mathematical formula. In order to make the raw DII™ scores easier to understand for consumers, they are converted into a simple “A to F” scale called the Dietary Inflammation Food Grade™, which can then be used for labeling food products.

While we do plan on offering this functionality in the future, at this time IMAGINE™ does not have a direct interface with wearable technologies.  They may be used, however, to help monitor the ancillary information they provide which will be helpful in monitoring factors related to reducing inflammation.

The best way to track your progress is through our online tool called DII™ On Demand™.  This in-depth questionnaire generates a DII™ score calculated by CHI scientists. Users receive a personalized report that includes their DII™ Score, dietary recommendations and next steps for reducing the inflammatory potential of one’s diet. By repeating the DII™ On Demand™ assessment, users can get a good sense of how their inflammation levels are changing over time.  You can sign up and take the DII™ On Demand™ assessment by clicking here.

Of course!  We love to hear from our customers.  Please send any testimonials or correspondence to us by clicking here. If we need additional information, we will reach out to you.

YES! All IMAGINEcounselors are screened and selected based on their professional qualifications.  Many are already certified dieticians or nutritionists.  Once they are pre-screened, our IMAGINE™ counselors must then complete our own certification program, ensuring they have the knowledge and skills required to facilitate an IMAGINEor other affiliated program.

Absolutely.  We are looking to expand our network of certified counselors.  If you are already a certified dietician or nutritionist, offering the IMAGINE™ program t your clients is a great way to earn additional income!  Want to learn more?  Please click here to email us for details.

The IMAGINE™ program consists of a variety of modules carefully designed to educate and provide a wholistic approach to managing dietary inflammation. The core modules for the program include: IMAGINE Overview, Dietary Inflammation, The DII™ Food Groups, Spice It Up! Boosting anti-inflammatory foods, Grocery Shopping, Restaurants and Travel, Introduction to Physical Activity, Energy Balance, All About Stress, Stress Management, Battling Barriers, Booster Session, Review and Staying Motivated.

DII Screener

If you are having an issues with DII™ on Demand, please contact us with your issue and we will try our best to assist!


IMAGINE™ is currently rolling out as a face-to-face live class in Columbia, South Carolina.  If you live in the area and would like information or to enroll, please click here! Our plans include to begin expanding throughout South Carolina during the second quarter of 2017, and then, throughout the Southeast, and eventually nationwide.

Virtually everything is provided at the classes, although you might want to bring a notepad/notebook and a pen. We will be cooking and perhaps doing some light exercises—so dress comfortably.  We will have aprons for you when needed.  The class schedule will be provided, so you will have an ideal of what to expect when!

  • Week 1: Introductions and IMAGINE™ Overview
  • Week 2: Dietary Inflammation
  • Week 3: The DII™ Food Groups
  • Week 4: Spice It Up! Boosting anti-inflammatory foods
  • Week 5: Grocery Shopping, Restaurants and Travel
  • Week 6: Introduction to Physical Activity
  • Week 7: Planning Your Physical Activity
  • Week 8: All About Stress
  • Week 9: Beating Stress
  • Week 10: Overcoming Barriers
  • Week 11: Group Choice
  • Week 12: Staying Motivated

We are planning on launching an online version of IMAGINE™ which will have many wonderful and engaging features built into the experience. The Online version is expected to debut during the second or third quarter of 2017.

DII Certification Course

Our DII™ certification course is designed for health professionals, such as physicians, nutritionists, and dieticians who want to receive a more in-depth understanding of the DII™--what it is, and how it works.  It also provides additional insight into understanding dietary inflammation from a clinical perspective, and finally, it is designed to give a comprehensive overview of the IMAGINE™ counseling program.

Clinicians who become DII™ certified are eligible to teach their own IMAGINE™ Live classes.  This affords them the opportunity to expand their client base and develop a new revenue stream within their practice. The prestigious DII™ certification means that you have been trained in the latest and most relevant research related to the area of dietary inflammation from Dr. James Hébert, the world’s foremost authority on the subject, and creator of the DII™.

The DII™ certification class will be offered online beginning in the 2nd or 3rd quarter of 2018.  If you are interested, or simply want additional information, please click here to contact us now!

Insurance & Costs

Unfortunately, per federal and state guidelines, the IMAGINE™ counseling and other CHI products are not currently reimbursable through your insurance or HSA. CHI is working towards having this amended.  Please check back or contact us for the latest details. We also encourage you to contact your insurance company for additional clarification and information.

Yes.  Please contact us for additional information.

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About Us

Connecting Health Innovations (CHI) is our parent company--a South Carolina LLC, founded in 2013 as a spinoff from the University of South Carolina and focused on the work of Dr. James Hébert, creator of the Dietary Inflammation Index (DII™). CHI is introducing a variety of innovative, targeted products and services, including the IMAGINE™ counseling program, our DII™ on Demand™ web-based evaluation tool and the DII™ Screener™ mobile app. By partnering with other forward thinking organizations and creating meaningful relationships with others, we seek to reduce a $500B health problem through better diet management!

Since 1988, Dr. James R. Hébert has been the Principal Investigator (P.I.), co-P.I., or subcontract P.I. on numerous federal grants. He has published literally hundreds of peer-reviewed papers in high-impact medical journals, with most of these focusing on various aspects of diet on health including inflammation and methodological issues encountered in the measurement of diet.

Dr. Hébert is Harvard-educated and his main administrative role is as the Director of the CPCP, which is based at the University of South Carolina in Columbia.  His primary academic appointment is in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics in the Arnold School of Public Health of the University of South Carolina.  He also holds adjunct appointments in the Department of Family and Preventive Medicine in the USC School of Medicine and in the Department of Medicine at the Medical University of South Carolina. Dr. Hébert has established strong collaborations around the world in the areas of public health, cancer prevention and control and epidemiology and biostatistics as a nutritional and cancer epidemiologist.

Over the past several years, Dr. Hébert has spent considerable effort developing the DII™, which has now been established and is regarded as an effective research tool.

We are always looking for talented individuals to join our team.  Any positions which we are actively recruiting for will be posted in the Careers section of our web site.  If you do not see anything that meets your background, please feel free to submit a resume and cover letter explaining why you would be a great fit for our team and what you can contribute!

We are always looking for like-minded partners and investors who want to help in our mission to combat and control dietary inflammation.  We’d love to discuss the possibilities with you.  Please click here and contact us today!

Please contact us directly with your request by clicking here.

Dr. Hébert and his team, along with outer subject matter experts such as our nutritionists, are available for keynotes, group presentations, interviews and other appearances.  Certain fees may be applicable, but let’s discuss and see how we can help support your efforts! Please click here to reach us and discuss.