What causes inflammation?

When your body recognizes anything foreign in your body, your immune system becomes activated. These foreign invaders include microbes, plant pollen, or chemicals. Activation of the immune system often triggers inflammation in purpose of threatening invaders to protect your body.

Although it is helpful that your body protects you from invaders, did you know inflammation can persist day after day, even without a threat to your body? This is called chronic inflammation, when your body’s defense system, can actually be your enemy.

Besides feeling uncomfortable, chronic inflammation has also been linked to cancer, heart disease, Alzheimer’s, diabetes, and even depression. This is why it is so important to reduce inflammation in your body and to start as soon as you can.

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How to Reduce Inflammation

Chances are, you don’t have to visit a pharmacy to reduce inflammation but rather solve it through proper lifestyle and diet protocols!

 

1. Limit foods that cause inflammation. These include:

  • Sugar
  • Saturated fats
  • Trans fats
  • Omega 6 fatty acids
  • Casein
  • Alcohol
  • Gluten
  • Canola Oil
  • Aspartame
  • Food you’re sensitive to

2. Consume more foods that help combat inflammation. These include:

  • Wild Salmon
  • Leafy greens
  • Walnuts
  • Berries
  • Chia seeds
  • Flax seeds
  • Omega 3 fatty acids
  • Olive oil

3. Reduce stress:

Chronic stress on the body increases inflammatory hormones such as cortisol. Reduce the unnecessary stressors in your life and make sure to set aside time for you to focus on what you enjoy

4. Get adequate amount of sleep:

Insufficient sleep causes levels to rise and inflammation to occur. Lack of sleep is also linked to GI disorders. As a general recommendation, try to get 7 hours of sleep a night.

5. Exercise, but don’t over do it:

Exercise suppresses pro-inflammatory compounds and increases anti-inflammatory cytokines (small proteins). Not only does exercise act as a natural anti-inflammatory, but it also up-regulates protein and enhances the antioxidant defense systems in the body. However, over-training can cause more inflammation to occur.

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Remember.. Getting an adequate amount of rest is CRUCIAL to not only your recovery, but your hormonal health as well

 

Click here to read about my top 20 tips to improve sleep!

 

 

Resource: Harvard Health Publishing. “Foods That Fight Inflammation – Harvard Health.” Harvard Health Blog, Harvard University, June 2014, Web.

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