In today’s fast-paced, high-pressure world your body is continuously under attack from two potentially deadly killers:
And both these killers produce the same result in your body:
Amazing piece of engineering that it is, your body generates inflammation to fight off these killers much of the time without you even noticing.
But sometimes these potential killers, and the inflammation your body generates to fight them, get the upper hand and that’s when you start feeling the symptoms:
- Asthma or breathing difficulties
- Joint or muscle pain
- Difficulty sleeping
- Frequent minor illnesses (coughs, colds or minor stomach upsets)
- Increased agitation or moodiness
- Development of allergies
- Loss of sex drive
Although pollution and stress are the triggers, it’s an excess of inflammation that your body generates to deal with them that actually causes these symptoms.
Help your body defeat inflammation
Scientific research and development means that today there’s a wealth of knowledge about diet and supplements (all natural) that address inflammation and the stress and toxicity that causes it.
And the benefits they offer include:
- Easier breathing
- Relief from joint and muscle pain
- Relief from stress
- Improved quality of sleep
- Less frequent minor illnesses but shorter duration and much quicker recovery times when you do get them
- Greater resistance to serious longer-term diseases like cancer and cardio-vascular problems
But let’s take a step back: why does your body generate inflammation?
Inflammation is your body’s first line of defence against toxins, bacteria and viruses – it’s part of your immune system and without it you would probably be dead.
In normal circumstances, as soon as your body detects an ‘invader’ – a toxin, virus or bacteria that should not be there – the inflammation process attacks it.
Once the invaders have been dealt with the inflammation process recedes and the healing process starts.
Or it should do.
But sometimes things go wrong and the inflammation process doesn’t end – that’s what the doctors call ‘chronic inflammation’ and what we usually experience as persistent pain, heat or swelling – and sometimes all three.
What else causes your body to generate inflammation?
As I mentioned earlier: pollution, and it’s almost impossible to avoid.
Most of the world’s population live in or near cities, many of which are industrialised. Even if they’re not, there is still vehicle traffic and, in the coastal cities, ships.
The huge container ships that use Hong Kong’s container terminal (one of the largest in the world) are major contributors to the atmospheric pollution we have here.
So the toxins you take in through:
- The air you breathe, particularly if you live in (or down-wind from) an urban or industrialised area
- The water you drink (remember all those chemicals that are used to ‘purify’ it..?)
- The food you eat (intensively farmed with all sorts of chemicals used to improve production and yield)
… are all seen by your body as ‘foreign invaders’.
These all cause your body to generate inflammation
In many cases your body deals with these toxins without you even knowing it. But, in some cases, the inflammation they cause leads to problems, among them:
- Difficulty breathing (inflammation of the respiratory system)
- Irritable bowels, flatulence and other digestive system problems (inflammation of the digestive system)
In these cases the inflammation process is attempting to deal with the toxins you’ve taken in, for example through the air you’re breathing, but, in doing so, it’s creating problems in your respiratory system.
And there are other sources of inflammation too, among them stress, lack of sleep, lack of exercise and being over-weight.
The fact is: we lead an inflammatory lifestyle
What happens when your inflammation process goes wrong?
Sometimes your inflammation process simply goes wrong. It mistakes healthy tissue for harmful pathogens and attacks them.
Or, as can happen to people with gluten allergies, it confuses the biological signature of gluten with the biological signature of cartilages in your joints – and attacks your cartilages.
This type of inflammation (chronic inflammation) can last for years because, in this situation, your body is literally at war with itself.
This is at the root of persistent joint and muscle pain and it’s where your doctor may prescribe anti-inflammatory treatments.
Inflammation is a major cause of heart disease
Even more serious than inflammation that causes pain is inflammation that does not cause you pain: inflammation in your arteries or heart (and other major organs).
Despite nearly 60 years of low fat diets and billions of dollars spent on statins and other drugs, the incidence of heart disease continues to rise.
The reason is because, for decades, doctors believed that high cholesterol levels were the cause and so prescribed cholesterol lowering diets and drugs.
But, while it’s true that cholesterol is involved, it is not the underlying cause.
Inflammation is the trigger
… because inflammation causes roughness on the walls of your arteries, which traps the cholesterol causing it to build up and create blockages. Without this arterial roughness cholesterol would flow smoothly through your body, doing what it is designed to do.
Don’t believe me? Read this
The reality is that cholesterol is something your body actually needs in order for you to maintain peak health.
By addressing the cholesterol level itself, not the underlying cause, all those billions spent on statins and other drugs have not been able to stop the increase in heart disease. (I have a keen interest in this subject for the reasons I explain on this page).
More details, including a link to an article by an experienced heart surgeon who covers this point in detail, are set out in my guide on reducing your inflammation.
In this video clip Dr Andrew Weil talks about how inflammation affects your body and how it’s the common underlying factor in many serious diseases:
How to reduce your inflammation
This site is all about using natural methods and products to reduce inflammation.
That’s how I manage my inflammation and here’s why: if you use a prescription treatment there are broadly two types:
- Treatments based on steroids (steroidal treatments)
- Treatments not based on steroids (Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs or NSAIDS)
And both generate nasty side-effects.
Jay D Foster, a Miami-based nutritional biochemist (here’s his website), has written a paper that details the side-effects caused by both steroidal and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory treatments and some of the statistics he quotes are shocking.
If you’re looking for an anti-inflammatory treatment I urge you to read his paper before choosing to go the prescription anti-inflammatory route.
A far better choice, in my view, is to use natural treatments, as I do, and skip the side-effects.
In addition to whichever treatment you choose to take, though, you should also recognise that you can greatly improve the results by modifying your diet and following a routine of detoxifying your body.
There are several additional steps I’ve taken to reduce my inflammation and they are set out in detail in my guide on inflammation, along with descriptions of the natural treatments I’m using:
A 15-page guide on inflammation: its causes and, importantly, how to reduce it …
I used to suffer from plantar fasciitis, which is an inflammation-related condition. After finding an effective treatment for it I began to learn as much as I could about inflammation generally, and I’ve captured my findings in this guide:
To the natural reduction of your inflammation!