Chronic Inflammation • Natural home remedies
Chronic inflammation is the long-term presence of inflammation in your body. Inflammation occurs in the first place as your body’s attempt to heal from an injury or harmful invaders like viruses or bacteria.
The purpose of inflammation is to clean up dead cells and tissues and to begin the process of repair. In chronic inflammation, your immune system in in a constant state of action, releasing pro-inflammatory cytokines. This can happen when you have an autoimmune disease where your body reacts to substances that are not normally harmful but that your own body mistakes as a foreign and harmful substance on an ongoing basis. Eventually, chronic inflammation will lead to other disease conditions.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS?
Some or all of these may be present
- Abdominal pain
- Chest pain
- Digestive problems
- Erectile dysfunction
- Glucose levels are high
- Joint pain
- Mouth sores
- Skin disorders
The NCBI estimates that the prevalence of immune-mediated inflammatory disease in Western society is 5-7%.
A diagnosis would be confirmed by blood tests. Your doctor may prescribe anti-inflammatory medications designed to relieve pain. Long term use of NSAID’s (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) can increase the risk of other harmful conditions.
A healthy immune system is always the first line of defense against disease and inflammation. To promote a healthy immune system, it is important to eat a balanced diet, with as much variety as you can manage, with lots of whole, fresh vegetables and fruits, quality protein and healthy sources of monounsaturated fat. The Zone is an excellent nutrition plan.
FOODS THAT MAY PROMOTE HEALING
- Bone Broth
- Fermented foods
- Fish from cold waters, preferably wild
- Grains–if you must eat grains, let them be whole grains
- Healthy fats like olives, nuts, avocado
- Leafy greens
- Olive oil
FOODS AND OTHER SUBSTANCES TO AVOID
- All inflammatory foods
- Fried foods
- Lean poultry
- Margarine and lard
- Processed foods of any kind
- Processed sugars
- Red meat (if you eat red meat, make it grass-fed)
TEAS AND OTHER LIQUIDS
- Licorice root
- Matcha green tea
HERBS AND SPICES
- Black pepper
- Celery seed
- Devil’s claw
- Fennel seeds
Essential oils can be administered via a diffuser for inhalation, administered topically in a carrier oil like coconut, or undiluted drops can be added to a hot bath.
- German chamomile
- Rosemary for pain
- Sweet Marjoram for pain
OTHER SUBSTANCES AND SUPPLEMENTS
The cost of having a blood test to determine if you have nutritional deficiencies is likely to be negligible compared to over-consuming expensive supplements that you do not need.
- Cat’s claw
- Devil’s claw
- Omega 3’s
- Vitamin D
- Willow bark
Water is essential and a main nutrient for the human body. Without it, you cannot survive for many days. Staying hydrated is fundamental for a healthy body, so how much is enough? There are so many differences in people (i.e., how much we sweat), as well as the diets we consume (a lot of water comes from healthy, whole foods), but a general rule is to consume enough water that your urine is clear, but not so much that you dilute your nutrients. If you are taking certain supplements that make your urine yellow, then you can start out with the formula of drinking ½ ounce to 1 ounce of water for each pound you weigh. If you weigh 130 pounds, drink 65 to 130 ounces of water a day. Definitely drink when you are thirsty.
Studies show that regular exercise programs help reduce inflammation. That exercise is beneficial for overall health is undisputed. If you are ill, you will want to take it easy, of course, but there is always something you can do to support your body. Do what you can without making yourself feel worse. Exercise in fresh air whenever possible.
Stay calm. Anxiety undermines health. Practice relaxation exercises, talk to a friend. Do what works for you to stay mellow. See the post for Stress if you have trouble relaxing.
OTHER THINGS YOU CAN DO
- Decrease excessive protein (what’s excessive? See the Zone Diet).
- Get adequate rest and sleep.
- Reduce stress.
- Test for food allergies or sensitivities and then eliminate or reduce any villains.
- Exercise moderately every day
- Acupressure (http://www.acupressure.com/blog/index.php/pain-relief-anti-inflammatory-acupressure-point-li-4/)
- Chinese Medicine
- Homeopathy (https://www.littlemountainhomeopathy.com/chronic-inflammation)
- A wholesome, balanced diet
- Regular exercise
- Low stress levels
- Quality sleep