When it comes to reducing inflammation, going on an anti-inflammatory diet is a popular choice because we can control/see it the easiest. However, if you’ve tried that it isn’t quite getting you where you want to be (aka you can’t veer off it at all), there are other sources of chronic inflammation to consider.
5 SNEAKY SOURCES OF CHRONIC INFLAMMATION TO WATCH OUT FOR
There are so many things that can factor into chronic inflammation. The best way to start addressing this issue is to be more aware of what might be causing it in your body.
CHRONIC INFLAMMATION SOURCE 1:
Stress is one of our weekly topics here, and for good reason. Cortisol itself is fast-acting and is so pro-inflammatory, it has to be turned into CORTISONE (sound familiar… cortisone shot?), it’s anti-inflammatory counterpart appropriately to be excreted. While adaptive in short term, staying in fight or flight for too long…
How to lower cortisol: Pick something everyday that you could do consistently, such as meditation, taking 10 deep breaths, getting outside in nature (Dr. Bhat’s fave!), or light stretching. All of which help lower cortisol levels.
CHRONIC INFLAMMATION SOURCE 2:
Our body burden to environmental toxins (not ones we produce endogenously but ones we are exposed to exogenously: outside of the body) can be pro-inflammatory at high level. Examples include: tap water, pesticides, moulds/mycotoxins, chemicals in cleaning products, detergents, soaps, beauty products, household items (cookware, furniture/carpets sprayed with fire retardants etc.), heavy metals, dry cleaning chemicals, oh and even new clothes! New clothes are often sprayed with formaldehyde (to prevent mildew in transport and which is how they’re always to wrinkle-free looking).
If you are sensitive, always wash new clothes when you purchase them before wear.
CHRONIC INFLAMMATION SOURCE 3:
This falls more into endogenous toxins (produced IN the body). When the body or the gut is housing an infection of sorts (stealth pathogens, parasites, worms, fungi, bacteria, virus etc.), biotoxins are built up daily. For example, the LPS (lipopolysaccaride) shell on gram-negative bacteria (i.e. e.coli), sheds, and when it sheds, that is inflammatory (and immuno stimulatory, which is not good for the autoimmune crowd) for us to deal with. LPS is such a strong immunostimulant it can induce fever and even septic shock. Now, a small amount of this is normal/ok. For example, these LPS are so stimulatory to our immune system, that they are added to some vaccines as an adjuvant to purposefully kick up an inflammatory response and stimulate the immune system.
If you haven’t considered it, maybe time to pop on a call with us about stool testing to see if a stealth pathogen might be what’s up.
CHRONIC INFLAMMATION SOURCE 4:
(emotional, physical): Our body has a memory! If we are living in fight or flight, if we wake up everyday and that thought/feeling is on loop (even if in the background), this can be changing up our physiology. Sometimes trauma can create a survival mode mechanism and this mechanism can get locked in. We develop habits to keep ourselves ‘safe’ from more trauma in that survival mode, NONE of which are useful when we are trying to THRIVE. I’m gonna repeat that one again: the habits that keep you in SURVIVAL MODE (rushing, deadlines, skipping meals, excess caffeine/alcohol, not drinking enough water, staying up late, missing workouts), are NOT the ones that will help you THRIVE.
Make a list of habits that help you thrive, then see how you can make time and space for those in your day.
CHRONIC INFLAMMATION SOURCE 5:
Coming back to the nature thing — As humans we adapted to being one with outdoors/nature. Over the years we have come so far from that life. We breathe indoor air, we listen to our TV/radio, not so much to birds etc., we stare at screens, we don’t get out in the sun (or we block ourselves from it), we eat processed foods made in factories and flown miles to our plates, and we don’t “have to” move. And what I mean by “have to” is go get food etc., it all comes to us!
Get outside breathe fresh air, move your body, get in the sun, listen to the birds chirp, get out in nature.
PUTTING OUT THE FIRE:
HOW TO COMBAT INFLAMMATION
We have talked about some of the SIGNS of inflammation before in newsletters past, like this one. Things such as body aches and pains (come in for a FIIX visit!!!!), painful/heavy periods/PMS, poor digestion, low mood or energy, and headaches, fatigue, brain fog to name a few! At TMB, we can address the sources of chronic inflammation through a few different avenues, depending on the patient:
TMB’S FIIX TREATMENTS + ACUPUNCTURE
Acupuncture at TMB is used to address the root cause of body dysfunction, including sources of pain, with personalized treatment plans. Did you know that acupuncture has powerful points that decrease inflammation? The insertion of needles in the correct places for that person can powerfully down-regulate chemicals involved in inflammation, while simultaneously promoting anti-inflammatory effects through certain neural pathways.
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TMB’S FUNC MED TREATMENTS
Through advanced functional medicine testing, we can find the root cause of inflammation which can be anything from a stealth infection in the gut, lack of certain nutrients like amino acids (protein), excess free-radical damage, poor estrogen detox, excess cortisol and more. From here, we create a personalized plan of action to get you on a healthier path through diet, supplement and lifestyle changes.
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