You already know that if you choose to eat a healthy diet, you’re more likely to live a longer, more active life than someone who fills up on unhealthy foods. However, researchers now think that what we eat has an even bigger effect on the dis-ease process than we may have thought.
That’s because, in recent years, scientists have connected a condition called
“chronic inflammation” with some of our most common and deadly diseases, including heart disease, stroke, cancer, Alzheimer’s disease and more; as well as difficult and painful conditions like rheumatoid arthritis and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). I have been doing a fair amount of research into 'chronic inflammation, and thought i would share some of my findings with you. I hope it will be informative for some of you.
Chronic inflammation, in part, has been directly connected with our diet, finding that in some cases, what we eat can influence how much unhealthy inflammation we have going on inside us. Inflammation is a complicated process and scientists, don’t have all the answers yet but are still figuring out all the angles. What we do know are three things:
Chronic inflammation is dangerous, and it’s affecting more and more people every day
Though there are a number of factors that can contribute to the development of chronic inflammation, diet is definitely one of them
Some foods can make chronic inflammation worse, and some foods can make it better
We can use this knowledge to avoid foods that stimulate chronic inflammation and choose foods that we know can help quieten it down.
What Is Chronic Inflammation?
Chronic inflammation is a malfunction of the immune system that creates damage inside the body. When things are normal, the immune system works as your personal bodyguard. It protects you from germs, fights off illnesses, and helps heal cuts and scrapes. Whenever it senses something that can injure you, it calls together various cells and hormones that work to fix the problem.
Inflammation is a key component in the immune system’s process of healing. You see it in the redness and swelling that forms around a cut on your finger. That’s a sign that the immune system’s cells are gathering to rebuild and repair injured tissues. You see the same thing when a spot forms on your face. The redness and swelling are the immune system’s response to the bacteria that invaded your skin, the cells working together to force out the damaging bugs.
Most types of healthy inflammation are “acute,” or quick-acting. You hurt yourself, and they hurry in to solve the problem. Once the wound is healed, they relax, and the redness disappears. You develop a cold, and they hurry in, fight off the bacteria or the virus and make you well. Once the bugs are gone, the inflammatory process stops, and your symptoms disappear.
Chronic inflammation is a different form of inflammation. Instead of solving problems for you, it causes them. Instead of rushing in to heal the cut and then relaxing once the tissues have returned to normal, it continues to cause swelling and redness and pain, and the wound doesn’t heal. Instead of doing its job and then going away, it hangs around like an unwanted guest, causing a low-level disturbance that wears down organs and tissues over time.
It’s been called the “silent killer” and a “hidden time bomb” because it often doesn’t cause any symptoms but continues to operate under the radar for months and sometimes years. Because inflammation causes heat in the body, chronic inflammation has been called “the slow burn,” and can be thought of as a low-lying fire that gradually burns up cells and tissues and organs until the damage is irreversible.
What Causes Chronic Inflammation to Appear?
It can be difficult to determine why chronic inflammation starts in the first place. There are a number of factors that can cause it, including the following:
Being overweight or obese
Sedentary lifestyle or lack of exercise
Autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis and lupus