Inflammation is an indication that your body is trying to fight off a perceived threat or trying to heal itself. For some of us, the first thing that comes to mind is the physical reaction to an injury such as an ankle sprain. This would be an example of acute inflammation. Acute inflammation is a very important process and a natural part of our immune system trying to heal. Without it, things like bacteria, viruses, and microscopic organisms would reek absolute havoc on our bodies. Chronic inflammation, on the other hand, is a constant, low level inflammatory response that has your body under a constant attack. Chronic inflammation most likely starts in the gut and intestinal lining, resulting in symptoms such as anxiety, brain fog, cardio vascular damage, insomnia, headaches, fatigue, acne, digestive issues, getting sick frequently, and a long list of other dysfunctions.
Inflammation can affect all regions of the body including the stomach, nervous system and brain. There are a number of things that cam make your body feel under attack:
- Poor diet.
- Unknown diet restrictions.
- Poor sleep hygine.
- Environmental toxins.
- Poor movement patterns and a sedentary lifestyle.
These factors can contribute to chronic inflammation which can lead to chronic illness and dysfunctions including:
- Lowered immunity/Autoimmune disorders.
- An inflammatory diet.
- Trouble sleeping.
- Cortisol dominant state.
- Poor absorption of nutrients.
- Leaky gut/IBS
- Rheumatoid arthritis.
Often times people become so desperate to alleviate their discomfort that they turn to both over the counter and prescription drugs. These drugs do not cure the problem, but instead, merely mask the symptoms temporarily and generally worsens the root cause of the problem over time. These drugs can also affect your kidney, liver, and stomach if taken for any length of time.
There are several natural remedies that not only combat inflammation, but act as a preventative measure as well. Taking a simple, proactive approach, rather than reactive approach to chronic inflammation allows you to live a happy, healthy and SUSTAINABLE life! A life without constant pain and discomfort. A life that allows you you to work with your body, not against it.
Incorporate these FIVE easy techniques to combat chronic inflammation in your daily routine and watch your life change rapidly. Your sleep, stress response, gut health, feeling of well being, and so much more will improve.
Eat plenty of fermented foods
Since a lot of the people that suffer from chronic inflammation are making their symptoms worse through their diet, it makes sense that combating the inflammation begins in the gut microbiota. Gut health is nothing to take lightly. Our gut is constantly communicating with our brain and every other part of our body. This is why when we are experiencing some anxiety our stomachs might become upset and vise versa.
Fermented foods are huge in keeping what is considered a healthy, diverse, and robust ecosystem in our tummies. The fermenting process creates healthy organisms known as prebiotics. These are what feed the good bacteria in our bodies, probiotics, that create countless hormones and signalling molecules which directly attenuate our physiology.
Examples of fermented foods to add to your diet include:
- Apple cider vinegar.
Curcumin is most commonly known for the bright yellow/orange color that it gives the turmeric root. It is a bioactive substance that protects us from inflammation at a cellular level.
Try having a cup of this turmeric punch daily to help combat chronic inflammation.
Turmeric Punch Recipe
- 1 cup warm water
- ½ lemon
- 1 tablespoons of maple syrup or honey
- 1 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
- ¼ teaspoon of turmeric
- Pinch of cayenne pepper
Protip Prepare a weeks worth of turmeric punch to save yourself some time and make it convenient.
Avoid ingesting things that inflame you
One of the main contributors to inflammation is the food that we eat. When we put foods into our bodies that is perceived as toxic, the immune system responds with inflammation in order to protect itself. Different things we consume can also cause our gut microbiomes to be imbalanced which also results in an inflammatory response. Simply removing these harmful substances or at least actively working to consume less of them can decrease the inflammation levels in the body.
Here are some examples of things to think twice about before you consume them:
- Processed sugars.
- Saturated fats.
- Trans fats.
- Refined carbohydrates.
- Artificial sweeteners, such as aspartame.
Supplement with and eat L-Glutamine:
There are 20 naturally occurring amino acids in dietary proteins. L-Glutamine is the most abundant one in the bloodstream, taking up 30-35% of the amino acid nitrogen in the blood. L-Glutamine is crucial to both immune health and preventing muscle wasting. A few places you can get L-Glutamine from include:
- Animal Protein.
There are also different types of dietary supplements to help you hit your daily consumption goal. Although, getting our micronutrients from the food we eat is always better than supplementing it, when possible. Ideally, we should be consuming two to five grams daily. L-Glutamine has shown to be extremely effective at combating the chronic stomach conditions caused by inflammation of the gut such as:
- Leaky gut.
- Stomach Ulcers.
Arguably the most important one: RELAX!
Stress is one of the most harmful things our bodies encounter on a daily basis. Its causes mayhem on our hormones, cognitive function, and immunity.
An abundance of research conducted at the Carnregie Mellon University has expressed that putting yourself under frequent stress directly affects immunity and puts you at a much greater risk for chronic disease. That’s right, taking time to relax is imperative to your health and physiological well-being. Here are a few things that you can do every day, in thirty minutes or less, to reduce stress and anxiety.
- Breathing Exercises.
- Getting enough sleep.
- Avoid giant peaks and valleys in your blood sugar.
- Exercise regularly.
- Restricting your intake of caffeine.
Tackling something like chronic inflammation can seem so big and overwhelming, but like most things in life, it is just about taking one step at a time. Setting an intention to incorporate at least one practice to combat inflammation into your daily routine is a great start. Just taking the initiative to form one healthy habit can get you out of pain and discomfort!