“Inflammation” is the new buzzword in the health care world, as it is being mentioned more and more. Have you ever sprained your ankle, and it became swollen and hot, and then bruised? That is a very obvious inflammatory response, and that is exactly what your body is supposed to do when you have an injury.
But there can also be inflammation in your body that you can’t see. This is also a natural response of your body, not to injury like a sprained ankle, but to injury to the cells in your body. How do the cells in your body get injured?
- Allergies to foods or the environment
- Toxins from food or the environment
- Infections, parasites, bacteria in the body
- Poor diet, again allowing in toxins and allergens
- Hormone imbalances
- Stress, can also cause hormone imbalances
- Impaired gut health, such as leaky gut
These are just a few reasons you can have inflammation but they can also conspire together to wreck your health.
How do you know if you are inflamed? In my practice I treat patients with chiropractic and acupuncture, and I also used Functional Medicine to help people get to the cause of a health problem. People come to me for a variety of reasons but the main one is usually pain, and pain usually involves inflammation. Here are just a few things I see when patients are inflamed
- Joint pain in one or more joints
- Aches and pains
- Belly fat since inflammation disrupts cortisol and cortisol stores fat around your waist
- Insomnia and disrupted sleep, again since inflammation disrupts cortisol (cortisol is a hormone that if out of balance will keep you up at night)
- Intestinal symptoms, such as irritable bowel syndrome or leaky gut
- Inflammation is now being seen at a cause of heart disease
You get the idea, inflammation can really mess with your body. It can also mess with your mind if you happen to see a Dr. who is not open to doing the proper tests for you, and now you think it’s all in your head.
So how do you find out the level of inflammation in your body? A simple blood test called Hs-CRP which is a easy and low cost.
Once you know your levels, then you can treat it naturally with diet and supplements, and here are some dietary tips on taming the inflammation if you know you have it, or to prevent it:
- Eliminate sugar, refined and processed foods, high fructose corn syrup, trans fats (hydrogenated oils are in packaged foods), most vegetable oils (except olive oil and coconut oils which are good oils), and artificial sweeteners
- Eat the good stuff such as high quality protein (organic, or grassfed), green non starchy veggies, limited starchy veggie such as sweet potatoes, nuts, seeds, oils such as olive and coconut, organic butter, and low sugar fruits such as berries.
- There are many supplements and herbs that can also assist in lowering inflammation, a few examples being fish oil or Omega 3’s, curcumin and boswellia.
So the bottom line is that if you don’t feel well, have pain, digestive issues, hormone imbalances, weight gain or allergies (just to name a few) get your inflammation levels checked. Find out the cause and you can work for a cure.
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