man with back pain bent over his desk

When something foreign enters our body (viruses, bacteria or toxic chemicals), or we get injured (cutting a finger), the immune system activates.  Our immune system sends our cells to trap bacteria or start healing injured tissue. This is considered an acute inflammation with flushed skin, pain or tenderness, swelling and heat.

When the body continues sending inflammatory cells even when there’s no outside danger, is considered chronic inflammation. These symptoms may be abdominal pain, chest pain, fatigue and/or insomnia, fever, joint pain and stiffness, and gastro issues including diarrhea, constipation and acid reflux.

Conditions associated with chronic inflammation are Type 2 diabetes, heart disease and high blood pressure, depression & anxiety, certain cancers, autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis, Crohn’s disease and inflammatory bowel disease.

Some of the causes of chronic inflammation include: untreated or repeated episodes of acute inflammation, exposure to toxins, autoimmune disorders, high body mass index, too much or not enough physical activity, chronic stress, smoking, bad gut bacterial flora, and elevated glucose and insulin levels.

 Care & Treatment:

  •  Acute – rest, ice and good wound care.
  •  Chronic – supplements = Vitamin A,C,D and zinc may reduce inflammation and enhance repair, Fish oil, spices: turmeric, ginger & garlic. (need to discuss with your health care provider for the appropriate supplements).
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS)
  • Steroid Injections – not more than 3-4/year in the same body part.
  • My favorite = anti-inflammatory lifestyle = manage stress, increase exercise, limit alcohol, limit processed foods, healthy fats (proper development of the central nervous system, energy production and storage, regulation of inflammation, oxygen transport) lots of vegetables and fruit, appropriate amounts of whole grains and plant-based and healthy proteins.
  • Another of my favorite = hydration = water or non-caffeine herbal teas.  Helps lubricate the joints by nourishing the blood and synovial fluids. 
  • Fish – 2 servings a week =SMASH= Wild Salmon, Spanish Mackerel, Anchovies, Sardines, Herring have the highest rate of Omega 3 and lowest mercury
  • The attached link has 30 smoothie recipes to help fight inflammation, I am sure there are a couple everyone will like….click here 
  • Free range eggs have the healthiest omega 3’s compared to conventionally raised.  More information on Free Range …..click here

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