Inflammation

Inflammation is often called the silent killer because it’s not widely understood yet. Many people don’t know that it’s because of inflammation that they have pain in various parts of their body. This chain reaction occurs in the body as a result of trauma, injury or repetitive motion – or due to poor diet and lack of exercise. The phrase move it or lose it definitely applies here.

Many people think that having arthritis or fibromyalgia means they can never move again without excruciating pain. But many doctors actually recommend moving to keep joints lubricated and muscles strong. Initially yes, it is going to hurt, but like most things gets easier in time.

Dr. Weil is my favorite go-to guy for all things anti-inflammatory, so I frequently visit his website and view his pyramid for a reminder on foods, herbs and spices that quench this annoying fire in the body. Some things I’ve learned from him and various other studies/doctors is that the following can help reduce inflammation if done consistently:

  1. Turmeric – This warming spice is the one that gives curry its color and is even used in some mustards. It has been used for centuries by Indians and other cultures in cooking. Unlike curry powder, to me the spice lends more color than flavor to most dishes, and is very versatile. I have used it in everything from spinach or cabbage to black beans and quinoa.
  2. Wild Alaskan Sockeye Salmon – While I don’t eat meat, I completely agree with the health benefits this wonderful fish offers. Wild is best because farmed fish could be fed with corn or grain, whereas the wild fish have more room to roam and eat like fish were meant to do. I tend to like things in their natural state too, so wild just makes more sense. Sockeye is extremely high in Omega 3’s, a common deficiency in vegans if we don’t take supplements from algae. This fish has been proven not only to help your brain, joints and pain, but also makes your skin nice and pretty.
  3. Extra Virgin Olive Oil – There has been a ton of controversy around this simple oil, and you may not even know about it. Many so-called olive oils are actually blends of several different oils which don’t offer the health benefits of true EVOO. To get the full benefits of this healthy fat, make sure it is PGI certified. I’ve found some great ones at Whole Foods, and the certification was right on the front of the bottle. This certification means it is guaranteed to be from where they say it’s from, and it is what they say it is. Bottom line – it’s the real deal. Much like buying organic, if you don’t see the stamp or seal, you can’t really be certain.
  4. Green Things – Ideally anything green, leafy and that grew with sunshine and water should be eaten every day. I try to eat spinach, broccoli and/or cabbage daily to prevent or reduce inflammation in my own body. I’ve noticed a huge difference in how I feel when I eat alkaline foods that are green, rather than simple carbs and sugars or things like coffee or sodas. Not only can disease not thrive in an alkaline environment, but it’s nearly impossible not to feel better when you’ve been eating whole, organic veggies for a while. Always remember to go organic on the leafy greens, bugs like them too much so they’re frequently over sprayed with pesticides.
  5. Asian Influence – Organic green tea and medicinal mushrooms like shitake and maitake are perfect here. I believe there’s a reason Asians lived longer and healthier than us before the fast food chains took over – green tea. Yes, other factors contribute and form a symphony of good health – close family ties, walking or biking everywhere, eating lots of fish and veggies – but I think there’s something to this green tea thing. I used to drink it before I ditched caffeine and I really think it helped keep me trim. Dr. Weil also talks about the medicinal mushrooms and how they can help with inflammation so I’d check his website out as well. One sidebar – an article by the BBC states that any kind of tea or coffee can block your absorption of iron, a much-needed mineral by most everyone. Organic Rooibos would be an exception because it has no caffeine or oxalates, and is low in tannins. So just be aware of that, and drink in moderation. Like most things, everything in moderation is a good idea.

So in conclusion, these are just a few of the things I’ve read that can help you get a handle on inflammation. In addition, simply walking each day can do wonders for resetting your cells and helping to boost your immune system. But more than that, eating right and working out just makes you feel better. You’re more confident, you sleep better and you tend to have fewer sick days. What’s not to like?

Disclaimer

These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, treat or cure any diseases. As with everything, check with your doctor first. All content is provided for general information only and should not be treated as a substitute for the medical advice of your own doctor or any other health care professional. Shauna Carpenter is not responsible or liable for any diagnosis made by a user based on the content of her personal WordPress blog. Shauna Carpenter does not endorse any commercial product(s) or service(s) mentioned, and is not paid by any of the sites or people mentioned.

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