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What you need to know about the critical link between your immune system and inflammation!
Fundamentally, inflammation is actually the way our bodies naturally react when “under attack”. Inflammation is how our body protects itself. It is how our bodies react to “foreigners”. Take T lymphocytes as an example. They are cytotoxic killer cells that eliminate “foreigners” from your body. They work hard to protect you, however, in this process they create a ton of inflammation. Don’t get me wrong, your body needs inflammation to fight off the bad guys, but that inflammation should be temporary. TEMPORARY is the key word here. Your body’s immune system is supposed to be able “turn on” and “turn off”. Things start going downhill when inflammation loses its ability to “turn off”. This is called CHRONIC or acute inflammation.
Both chronic and acute inflammation impact the body’s cells, not just in the gut. Chronic inflammation may result in chronic muscle pain (fibromyalgia) or chronic joint pain (rheumatoid arthritis). Acute inflammation, on the other hand, may result in bouts of brain fog, fatigue or bloating. Failure to reduce acute inflammation can lead to more chronic conditions.
Hold up. What really triggers inflammation in your body? What creates dysbiosis in the gut? One of the answers is simple: FOOD.
Be aware that food is most certainly not the only agent responsible for temporary or chronic inflammation but it is the easiest variable control. Stress and anxiety are two other big players that trigger inflammation, but, they take more time and effort to reduce or eradicate the harmful consequences and side effects of inflammation. Depending on who you are and your bio-individuality, certain foods trigger the release of inflammatory molecules and antibodies in your body. These “trigger foods” are due to either the food allergies or the food sensitivities that one may have. Food can be the root cause of chronic inflammation. This is why eating foods that keep YOUR immune system and gut in check, is a great place to start.
HOW TO HEAL INFLAMMATION?
Now, it’s one thing to identify the source, but it’s another to find your solution. So how can you get rid of inflammation? There are many answers to this question.
1. Cutting Out Inflammatory Foods is a MUST
Over the past decade, we have learned just how harmful refined sugar is to our health. When you eat sugary foods, immune cells start actively releasing inflammatory molecules. These little suckers travel throughout your entire body and wreak havoc. Avoiding high glycemic foods should be the first thing you do such as refined carbs which include white flour, juices, soft drinks, cookies and candy off of your daily regime will be greatly beneficial.
Trans and saturated fats
These type of fats are also pretty nasty for your health. Trans fats and saturated animal fats turn into inflammatory molecules once digested. That being said, Omega 3 fats are extremely anti-inflammatory! So, swap the processed meal for a piece of farm fresh fatty fish like salmon. The kind of dietary fats you consume are extremely important since dietary fats influence cell function.
Discover my go to anti-inflammatory foods here!
2. Consider an Elimination Diet
If taking a food allergy test is not your thing, or you simply don’t have access to one nearby, I recommend you try an elimination diet. These kinds of diets help you pinpoint what food groups may be causing the problem. The idea behind this diet is that every week or two you eliminate a food group, such as dairy or gluten and observe how your body reacts to it. But keep in mind you must commit to removing the food group entirely for the two weeks, your body needs time to adjust so you can deduce how you truly feel. And remember to start small! Don’t start by cutting out everything at once, start small with only dairy or only sugar.
3. Restore your Microbiome
Restoring your microbiome is essential in reducing inflammation. This can be done by taking probiotics and prebiotics, for example, The Super Elixir is a great (and easy) way to start integrating pro and prebiotics into your diet on the daily. The Super Elixir is formulated using a combination of 40+ naturally derived ingredients including whole-foods, herbal extracts, vitamins, minerals and pre & probiotics. The careful mix of pre and probiotics support digestion and create a healthy gut pH balance which equals less bloating and a flatter tummy.
“This is why eating foods that keep YOUR immune system and gut in check, is a great place to start.”
The moral of the story is: there are many integrative solutions and ways to reduce inflammatory reactions. Returning to a balanced and homeostatic state is crucial if you wish to be in optimal health, build a stronger immune system and achieve overall wellness. Check out my easy peasy recipes for inspiration next time you’re in the kitchen!
Live your life. Adopt the Global Glow Lifestyle.
Image credit: @patriciabrochuphotographe