Inflammation Nation

What’s inflammation? In terms of our body, inflammation is a normal process that occurs when your body’s white blood cells and chemicals protect you from unwelcome bacterial invasions that can cause viruses.

 Although this certain level of inflammation in the body is necessary, it’s quite possible and common for the inflammatory response to get a little tricky. This is because your immune system can mistakenly trigger an inflammatory response when there’s actually no threat present; leading to excess internal inflammation. Excess inflammation in the body has been linked to asthma, allergies, autoimmune disease, heart disease, cancer, and other diseases; depending on which organs are being impacted by the inflammation.

 For example, according to Dr. Mercola, here are ways it can impact the following:

  • Inflammation of your heart = shortness of breath or fluid retention

  • Inflammation of the small tubes that transport air to the lungs = asthma attack

  • Inflammation of you kidney’s = high blood pressure or kidney failure

  • Inflammation of your large intestine = cramps and diarrhea

 Acute vs. Chronic

 Acute inflammation is the necessary type of inflammation. You can remember this by thinking, acute is cute. “Awww…a cute inflammation!” Get it? Acute, a-cute? Silly, yes J But hey, it’s an easy way to remember it’s differentiation from chronic inflammation. If you obtain an injury or have an infection, this is where inflammation comes in to protect and heal your body. While blood cells are sent to the area in need and fight off the foreign bodies.

I’m sure most people reading this have experience acute inflammation before. The symptoms are as follows:

  • Redness

  • Warmth

  • Pain

  • Swelling

  • Loss of mobility

However, when inflammation turns down the chronic path, there are often no symptoms until a loss of function occurs. This is because chronic inflammation keeps itself on the down low, silently damaging your tissues.

This deceptive process can go on for years without your knowledge. That is, until, an unwanted disease like cancer, multiple sclerosis, or any I mentioned earlier develops. No thanks.

Natural Treatments

Lifestyle changes can really go a long way toward reducing chronic inflammation in your body. Try focusing on making these following changes (if you haven’t already):

  • Maintain a healthy diet. This includes avoiding pro-inflammatory foods like trans fats, fried foods, sugar, and grains.

  • Get plenty animal based omega-3 fats! You can get these through salmon, tuna, and other healthy fishy sources; OR you can take fish oil pills. Like Krill oil!

  • Exercise regularly. But you already knew that 😉 it’s a great way to lower inflammation without any of the side effects associated with medications.

  • If you’ve got a nasty smoking habit, kick it. Smoking hardens your arteries and increases inflammation. Luckily, research shows that you can near eliminate all the damaging effects of your arteries within 10 years of quitting.Have healthy stress outlets. High levels of stress hormones can lead to the release of excess inflammatory chemicals. So try utilizing healthy tools to release that stress and resolve negative emotions. Things such as meditation, prayer, running, dancing – whatever that personal release is for you.

  • Get that Vitamin D! You can get this by being exposed to the sun, my personal favorite way. However if you’re not a sun person or its winter – you can take vitamin D supplements. Just be sure you use the appropriate amounts.

So there you have it – some beneficial insight into the nation of inflammation. I hope you feel a better understanding of what inflammation is and what you can do to reduce your risk of the bad kind. Which is what again? Chronic! Most definitely, NOT cute.