What is inflammation?
Simply put, inflammation is one of the body’s defense systems. It is like your computer’s anti-virus protection and comes into action when alerted by a potential invader.
It can occur all over the body, inside and out. Most of the time it is a healthy and necessary protective response as a result of injury or infection – this is known as acute inflammation and usually lasts from a couple of hours to a few days. However sometimes, and in some people, the inflammatory response misfires. People who suffer from chronic (meaning persistent or continuous) inflammatory diseases, for example, have an immune system that confuses its own cells for foreign and harmful invaders, meaning the inflammatory response always has the green light. Even people without an inflammatory disease can experience inflammation on a too-regular basis. Today’s lifestyle and standard diet have a lot to answer for, and a lot of the time is the cause of unnecessary and unwanted inflammation.
THE 5 SIGNS OF INFLAMMATION
- Loss of function
WHY IS UNNECESSARY/UNWANTED INFLAMMATION BAD?
First of all, it completely drains your energy. Eczema meant that I was in a constant state of inflammation. My body was continuously trying to protect and fight which drained my energy stores, leaving very little for healing and repair.
Secondly, and more importantly, chronic inflammation can lead to a whole host of diseases, from the fairly common to the very serious.
Therefore, it is up to us not to cause inflammation unnecessarily.
COMMON CAUSES OF INFLAMMATION
- Injury (necessary inflammation)
- Infection (necessary inflammation)
- Psychological stress (unnecessary inflammation)
- Pro-inflammatory diets containing excesses of Omega-6 Fatty Acids, meat, dairy, gluten, sugar and refined grains (unnecessary inflammation)
- Lack of sleep (unnecessary inflammation)
NATURAL WAYS TO REDUCE INFLAMMATION
Often, people reach for over the counter medication to reduce inflammation. Unfortunately, these can come with unwanted side effects. I prefer to go au-natural and there are many, very effective, natural ways to reduce inflammation, some of which are listed below;
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Probiotic rich foods
Anti-oxidant rich foods
Regular, gentle and restorative exercise
Adequate vitamin D