Some inflammation is necessary to stay healthy. For example, if you get an injury, white blood cells rush to the area resulting in swelling, redness and heat. These are all necessary responses for healing to occur. While acute inflammation is beneficial, chronic inflammation can be problematic.
Chronic low-grade inflammation leads to an over-reactive immune system, silently damaging your tissues, causing rapid aging and ultimately chronic health conditions. Some of the chronic health conditions that can result from low-grade systemic inflammation include: asthma, allergies, auto immune, heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s, and depression.
The good news is that you can reduce overall inflammation by minimizing significant contributors (e.g., poor diet, increased intestinal permeability, stress, inadequate sleep, and lack of exercise). Of these contributors, poor diet- specifically sugar, may be the most problematic. Sugar not only is nutrient deficient, but could be described as an anti-nutrient. Our bodies require nutrients to metabolize and break down food. If you eat a cookie, which is high in sugar but lacks nutrients, your body will pull the necessary nutrients required for metabolism from your body’s reserves. This can be compared with a bank account. If you keep making withdrawals (i.e. eating a diet high in sugar, processed, and refined foods) but never make any deposits (i.e. nutrient-rich whole foods), eventually your account will become depleted. When your body is depleted, your health and body’s functioning becomes hindered. How do you reduce inflammation? Enjoy a nutrient-dense whole foods diet, get adequate sleep and move your body!