Ways to Take Control of Your Inflammation

Did you know that millions of pathogens attack your body every day! Some are known to cause deadly diseases and complications. 

And yet, we seem to be doing just fine without doing much whatsoever. 

This is the work of our immune system. It attacks and destroys any organism which may have breached the skin barrier. However, its working process, inflammation, is not something you would like to experience for no reason.

Learn how it can even arise from a poor lifestyle followed by ways you can manage it.

What is Inflammation?

Inflammation is the body’s natural response against a pathogen or damage. 

Woman sitting on the beach.

As the name suggests, the body sets itself on a temporary attack mode. Consequently, your systems alter the body’s normal functioning. For example, raising the normal body temperature and cytotoxic (cell-killing) cells.

However, sometimes this response is triggered without any pathogen or illness. As there is no organism to fight, the body launches an attack on itself. If it persisted, it starts to damage blood vessels and tissues permanently.

It can occur because of an unknown or idiopathic reason. However, studies have shown that a poor lifestyle can increase inflammatory responses against the body. It includes factors like taking too much stress, not getting enough exercise, and a poor diet.

Nonetheless, it is further classified into two types: acute and chronic. Understandably, both types of inflammation treatment differ as well.

Acute Inflammations

These inflammations are generally short-lived and involve the action of neutrophils.

Generally, a bacterial attack may cause acute inflammation. However, this kind is generally less severe than chronic.

Chronic Inflammations

Chronic inflammation is long-term inflammation. In contrast to acute inflammation, the action of leukocytes is seen. Leukocytes are the trump card for the body’s immune system. They also produce antibodies. 

Viral or fungal infestation usually triggers chronic inflammation. However, autoimmune diseases also exhibit chronic inflammation. 

Stress and lifestyle changes seem to involve chronic inflammation. Therefore, proper and quick inflammation treatment becomes essential.

How To Reduce Inflammation

Our bodies are constantly exchanging signals in the form of cytokines. Therefore, under normal circumstances, inflammation subsides itself. 

However, in conditions such as autoimmune disorders or stress-induced inflammation, treatments and precautions are needed.

There are different treatments for chronic and acute inflammations as their activation is different. 

Acute Inflammation Treatment

Pain, swelling, and redness are the classic signs of acute inflammation. It can be painful and irritating if left entirely unaided.

The treatments for acute inflammation involve managing the associated symptoms as the body cures itself.

Resting

The best way to manage acute inflammation is to let the body do its work. 

By reducing the external stress, you can enable the body to focus entirely on eliminating pathogens. Symptoms can worsen if one overworks oneself during an infection.  

Icing

Redness and heat are classic signs of an infection. Cooling the inflamed spot can temporarily manage and reduce the pain.

Elevating

The swelling on the infected site during acute inflammation is due to the leakage of blood vessels. Cytokines such as heparin and histamines are responsible for this leakage.

Elevating the infected site is a simple way of allowing the drainage of these fluids, e.g., raising the infected foot above the head by a pillow while sleeping. People get relief from pain by the reduced swelling. 

Compressing

Another way to reduce the swelling is to apply compression to the wound. The mechanical stress pushes the fluids away, helping in the drainage via the lymphatic system

Chronic Inflammation Treatment

Due to the longevity of chronic inflammation, many organ systems start to deteriorate. 

Studies have shown that chronic inflammation can cause and exaggerate deadly ailments like diabetes, heart diseases, liver disease, and even cancer.

NSAIDs and Corticosteroids can provide a decrease in inflammation. However, by reducing the activity of the immune system, a person becomes more prone to otherwise trivial infections. 

Following are some natural and healthy ways by which you can reduce inflammation while maintaining the integrity of the immune system.   

Diet

Managing and controlling your diet is the best way to manage chronic inflammation.

You want to aim at foods that reduce inflammation and prevent those that aggravate it. 

Studies have shown that the Mediterranean Diet is an excellent choice for anti-inflammatory food. It includes taking foods such as:

  • Vegetables
  • Fruits
  • Nuts
  • Legume
  • Potatoes
  • Fish
  • Seafood
  • Eggs
  • Yogurt
  • Poultry

In addition to this, you may also eat red meat, but only occasionally. 

Antioxidant-rich fruits such as oranges, cherries, peaches, raspberries, and strawberries also show results in reducing inflammation.

A low-carb diet has also been shown to reduce inflammation, especially in people with obesity and metabolic syndrome. 

Sugary foods and anything that raises insulin levels in the body has produced insulin tolerance and inflammation. Refined and processed food should be avoided. They include, but are not limited to:

  • High sugar corn syrups
  • Cookies
  • Cake 
  • Ice Cream
  • Chips
  • Pretzels
  • Processed meat
  • Deep-Fried Foods
  • Margarine

In addition to that, people consuming high amounts of omega-3 and 6 fatty acids show increased signs of inflammation

A glass of beer.

Excessive alcohol intake can increase the oxidants in the body. This not only damages the kidneys and liver but also promotes inflammation in the body. 

Exercise

A sedentary lifestyle and lack of physical activity are always detrimental to health. It is commonly associated with obesity and coronary heart diseases. 

In addition to that, studies have shown lack of activity promotes inflammation. The main culprit behind this is insulin dependency in obese people and the tendency to eat inflammation-promoting foods.

Therefore, at least incorporate a 30-minute walk or an exercise routine in your daily life. 

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Stress Management

Stress has a direct relation to chronic inflammation. Studies have shown stress can directly induce inflammation.  

During stress, many inflammations boosting cytokines are released, which can promote chronic inflammation. In association, stress can cause hypertension which can damage blood vessels. Repairing the damaged blood vessels can lead to further inflammation.  

Incorporate stress-relieving activities such as yoga, walking, and hanging out with friends in your day.

Conclusion

Inflammation is a natural process. However, abusing the body by ingesting unhealthy food and stress can promote inflammation. 

It is much better to prevent rather than treat inflammation. Living a healthy and stress-free lifestyle can save you from many menacing diseases.

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