Inflammation is a response of the immune and cardiovascular system to some form of trauma. The trauma could be physical, such as stubbing your toe, or chemical, such as an allergen. Inflammation is actually an important part of the healing process, but it becomes a problem when the body’s response is inappropriate in strength, length of time, or location.
Chronic Inflammation is inflammation that has gone on for months or years. It leads to tissue damage and eventually necrosis, or tissue death. This often happens without the person having any clue that inflammation is to blame.
There is a simple blood test that can reveal your levels of inflammation. The C-reactive protein test measures the level of the protein that rises as inflammation occurs. Addressing this problem could be a lifesaver. In a study of elderly patients who were otherwise healthy, those with high levels of the C-reactive protein were 260 times more likely to die within 4 years. People rarely think to have this test until they are rather ill and damage has already been done.
Many diseases have inflammation as a root cause, and almost all modern diseases can count it as a factor. Heart disease, stroke, diabetes, autoimmune diseases, atherosclerosis, migraines, gum diseases, thyroid problems, dementia, depression, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, the list goes on and on. Even autism and obesity have been linked to inflammation.
What often happens is that people end up on multiple medications (often with nasty side effects). The underlying cause of inflammation is rarely addressed, but their symptoms are put under some semblance of control. Despite the person feeling normal, the damage to their body rages on.
Up Next: Inflammation: Causes and Solutions.
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