For what inflammation is and its effects on the body, see this previous post.
Inflammation can be caused by many things, luckily most of them are within our control. It’s important to be aware of the many causes in order to avoid them and the diseases they would trigger.
Dietary sources of inflammation are everywhere in our society. Sugar, processed foods, trans-fats, alcohol, genetically modified foods, refined grains, and MSG are all causes. An intolerance to certain foods will also cause inflammation.
Poor sleep habits lead to inflammation. Not getting enough shut-eye, or having poor quality sleep can be triggers. Those who get less than 6 hours a night were found to have elevated markers for inflammation.
Damage to the intestines caused by poor diet, food allergies, or antibiotics allows partially digested particles of food into the blood stream. The immune system attacks these particles because they are not where they belong. This is often referred to as “leaky gut” and causes inflammation as well as other problems.
Chronic bacterial, viral or yeast infections, obesity, sedentary lifestyle, stress, hormonal imbalances, environmental toxins, allergens, and some medications are other causes.
Avoiding the foods that cause inflammation and adding anti-inflammatory food to our diet can be a big boost to our health. Ginger, turmeric, green tea, tart cherries, omega-3 from nuts and fish, fiber and vitamin E in dark leafy greens, beets, garlic, onions, and some all fight inflammation.
Using probiotics either in supplements or fermented foods can help heal damage to the intestines, blocking a cause of inflammation. Bone broths can also help with this.
Lifestyle changes such as adding regular exercise, getting plenty of sleep, and making time to de-stress are important in fighting inflammation. Adding a vitamin D supplement has also been shown to help.
Inflammation is a big factor in how we feel. By avoiding triggers and using some of the simple solutions in this article you can take charge of your health.
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