Healthy Inflammatory Balance

No one wants to be held back by physical pain and discomfort from following their dreams. Whether it is running a marathon, hiking New Hampshire’s 4000 footers, pedaling through Peru or, just taking a walk with a loved one. Worse yet, no one wants to be at risk for diseases that may not only hold them back from doing everything they want to do in life bu; it may even threaten their life.

 

Inflammation friend or foe? 

The truth is that it can be both. Not all inflammation is harmful. Take acute inflammation, for example. Just about everyone has experienced getting a splinter in their finger. It gets very red and tender to the touch, and it begins to get pus. Our body is responding to an injury sending all the necessary armies to repair and defend us. This inflammatory response is beneficial. The goal for everyone should be to maintain a healthy inflammatory response. We always hear about anti-inflammatories, but inflammation is a vital part of the immune system’s response to injury and infection.

 

Acute Inflammation

Acute inflammation is a short term, localized response. It is the way the body tries to repair itself.1The body recognizes harmful and foreign invaders; white blood cells then enter the bloodstream or bodily tissue to raising the blood flow to the injury or infected area. Inflammation is the body’s way of signaling the immune system to heal and repair damaged tissue and defend itself against foreign invaders, such as viruses and bacteria. 2 Signs of acute inflammation are redness, swelling, pain and loss of function. Acute inflammation should only last a few days. 3

 

Chronic Inflammation

When the inflammation never turns off!

Long term inflammation leaves your body in a constant state of high alert, called Chronic Inflammation. Underlying low-grade inflammation produces a steady, low-level inflammation throughout the body; there will be a rise in immune system markers found in blood or tissue. Low-grade inflammation may be responsible for increased risk for disease, poor physical functioning, and dementia4.

Chronic inflammation may also put you at risk for heart disease, stroke, and autoimmune disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis and lupus. 5 Obesity is also a form of Inflammation.6

Conditions that create chronic inflammation: 

The standard American diet of highly processed foods, sugar, refined carbohydrates, excess alcohol, oxidative stress, allergens, lack of exercise, chronic stress, and underlying infections all trigger unseen inflammation in your cells.7

Maintaining a healthy inflammatory response.

  • Eat a low-glycemic index diet. These diets are low in sugar and refined carbohydrates. Low glycemic foods are slowly digested and absorbed, causing a slower and smaller rise in blood sugar levels.8
  • Fish and seafood: including salmon, trout, tuna, sardines, and prawns
  • animal products: including beef, chicken, pork, lamb, and eggs
  • Nuts: such as almonds, cashews, pistachios, walnuts, and macadamia nuts
  • Fats and oils: including olive oil, butter, and avocado
  • Herbs and spices: such as garlic, basil, dill, salt, and pepper
  • Vegetables: carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, celery, zucchini, kale, spinach, cucumbers, and more
  • Tubers: Potatoes, sweet potatoes, turnips, yams
  • Legumes: lentils, chickpeas, baked beans, butter beans, kidney beans, and more
  • Grains: quinoa, barley, pearl couscous, buckwheat, freekeh, semolina
  • Fruit: apples, strawberries, apricots, peaches, plums, pears, kiwi, tomatoes, and more
  • Reduce saturated and trans-fat intake. These fats, present in packaged and heavily processed foods, can aggravate inflammation.
  • Eat more omega-3s. Omega -3’s may reduce inflammation in diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. 9
  • Eat more fiber, fruits, and vegetables. Fiber, which is found in fruits, vegetables, and legumes, may lower inflammatory cytokines. Fruits and vegetables have beneficial phytonutrients, antioxidants that aid in combatting inflammation. 10
  • Exercise. Exercise helps to combat obesity by reducing fat mass and increasing muscle production, which increases anti-inflammatory cytokines. It may also lower levels of inflammatory molecules in the body.11
  • Reduce stress. Stress can cause the body to release inflammatory cytokines. It can also lead to sleep disorders, leading to a higher risk of chronic inflammation. 12
  • Consider supplements.
  • Ginger contains potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. 13
  • Curcumin has been shown to fight inflammation. 14
  • Resveratrol contains phytochemicals that made aid in reducing inflammatory markers. 15
  • Spirulina – blue-green algae with potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits.16
  • Elimination diet. Dietary factors may cause some inflammatory conditions.  Consider an elimination diet to find out if you have any food sensitivities. This will help with any chronic inflammatory disease. 17

According to the world health organization, chronic inflammatory diseases are the most significant cause of death and the most significant threat to humans in the world. Do what you can to protect yourself. Make the best choices every day, your future health depends on it!

 

 

  1. https://www.healthline.com/health/chronic-inflammation response
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK493173/
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3320801
  4. 4https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3320801/
  5. https://www.livescience.com/52344-inflammation.htmldiet and lifestyle can help keep inflammation under control.
  6. https://drhyman.com/blog/2012/01/27/inflammation-how-to-cool-the-fire-inside-you-thats-making-you-fat-and-diseased/
  7. https://www.drperlmutter.com/reducing-inflammation-for-better-health/
  8. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/low-glycemic-diet#other-benefits
  9. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24860193/
  10. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5456284/
  11. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30844477/
  12. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5476783/
  13. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/B9780128051863000059
  14. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25688638/
  15. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25688638/
  16. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2907180/
  17. https://www.todaysdietitian.com/newarchives/110211p18.shtml
  18. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK493173/

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