What Contributes to a “Pro-Inflammatory” Lifestyle?

I have written many times about the many and myriad negative implications inflammation has on the body and mind. You could say inflammation is the root of all pain and most illness. The problem with treating inflammation is that it has many sources and western medicine only has one primary treatment for it: anti-inflammatory drugs. Non-steroidal and steroid anti-inflammatory drugs both pack a whole boat load of side-effects, which many times outstrip the inflammation itself in terms of impact on the body. As always, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. So how do we prevent inflammation? First, become aware of the many causes of it so you can then begin to prevent each one.

  1. High Sugar Foods: You immune system is suppressed for 2-4 hours after ingesting it…don’t!
  2. High Fat Foods: Especially foods with arachidonic acid and saturated fats (dairy and animal fats primarily). The right kind of fat is beneficial and anti-inflammatory.
  3. Food Allergies: Allergens form immune complexes and lead to inflammation. Do the ALCAT test to check for yours. It’s $445 out of pocket, or many times at least partially reimbursed by insurance. Our NAET or Aura PTL Laser protocol will remove food and environmental allergies for life!
  4. Foods that promote bacterial overgrowth of the small bowel: Simple sugars and complex carbohydrates that are quickly digested such as refined flour and white potatoes. A complete stool analysis will quickly tell if there is yeast or bacteria growing in the small bowel.
  5. Insufficient Fiber: Fiber pulls toxins from the GI tract and acts like a broom to sweep them out.
  6. Insufficient Phytonutrients: Phytonutrients are primarily found in fruits, veggies, nuts, and seeds and act as anti-inflammatories and anti-oxidants, which quench inflammation.
  7. Insufficient Exercise: Exercise helps to reduce adipose tissue (fat), which is pro-inflammatory and it increases lean muscle mass which reduces inflammation by improving insulin sensitivity.
  8. Vitamin D deficiency: Causes inflammation, promotes autoimmunity, and expedites the progression of osteoarthritis. A simple blood test (paid for by insurance unless you have Regence, who has decided that even though you live in the Pacific Northwest, they won’t pay to have your D levels checked any longer) will quickly tell how much you should be taking.
  9. Fatty Acid Imbalance: Insufficiency in Omega 3 and 6 fats, along with excesses of saturated fat and trans-fats lead to inflammation. A fatty acid test can tell what your balance is and which fats you need to focus on ingesting less or more of.
  10. Vitamin and Mineral deficiency: Especially magnesium, which is seen in 20-40% of the most “industrialized” populations. A hair mineral analysis will tell what your mineral levels are or the Nutreval test from Genova Diagnostics. It’s $169 with their “Pay Assured” program (unless you have Aetna insurance and then it’s all out of pocket because Aetna does not participate in this program).
  11. Xenobiotic/Toxin Accumulation: A xenobiotic is a chemical which is found in an organism but which is not normally produced or expected to be present in it. It can also cover substances which are present in much higher concentrations than are usual. Specifically, drugs such as antibiotics are xenobiotics in humans because the human body does not produce them itself, nor are they part of a normal diet.

Natural compounds can also become xenobiotics if they are taken up by another organism, such as the uptake of natural human hormones by fish found downstream of sewage treatment plant outfalls, or the chemical defenses produced by some organisms as protection against predators.

However, the term xenobiotics is very often used in the context of pollutants such as dioxins and polychlorinated biphenyls and their effect on the biota, because xenobiotics are understood as substances foreign to an entire biological system, i.e. artificial substances, which did not exist in nature before their synthesis by humans.

  • Emotional Stress and Toxic Relationships: High stress has been shown to impair wound healing, decreases the immune system, and promotes inflammation of the body as well as the mind. The enneagram, The Heart Math Solution, and heart centered clinical hypnotherapy are all tools we use to help with coping with stress and learning better self-awareness and boundary setting tools so stress does not wreak havoc with the body and mind.

Take the time to go through each of these categories and circle which ones you need to work on and then begin to chip away at it by introducing a healthier alternative…one step at a time. Simple inflammatory markers done with blood testing can reveal the level of inflammation, as well as your own symptoms like skin disorders, joint pain, gastric esophageal reflux, digestive issues, menstrual cramps, hot flashes, autoimmune disease, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obesity, mood swings, depression and anxiety, insomnia, and more. Give yourself the gift of a long healthy life with a mind that remains sharp until the day you die.

Sorry, comments are closed for this post.