Sometimes we mistake extra weight for inflammation.
The extra fat around your midsection, neck, and legs could actually be inflammation.
What this means is that your body is working to keep you healthy. Something that you ate, added stress, an allergen, or an injury is irritating your immune system and causing your body to flood with inflammation to protect you.
Would you believe me if I told you that the best way to lower inflammation is self-care and diet?
That’s what I’m going to share with you today. After you read this article, you will have a better idea of the changes you could make to lower the inflammation in your body.
What is Inflammation?
Inflammation is your body’s defense mechanism to fight off anything that poses a threat to your wellbeing.
The swelling, redness, and pain are all symptoms that work together to heal your body. Your immune system orchestrates it.
When something happens, your immune system kicks into high gear to send white blood cells and structural proteins to the area in trouble to save you from infection and further injury.
Chronic inflammation is more severe than acute inflammation because it can last for years to come. Living with chronic inflammation over time negatively impacts your body’s ability to take care of itself.
With time, your wound healing response will be slower. Your chances of developing a chronic disease like arthritis, diabetes, depression, gastrointestinal disorders, obesity, and heart disease increase.
Chronic inflammation is a risk factor for disease and close to 50 percent of deaths worldwide.
Collectively, diseases related to chronic inflammation account for 50% of deaths worldwide.
Obesity is a risk factor for inflammation. It drives inflammation because the body is overworking to maintain itself. It lowers mortality and vitality.
Extra weight puts pressure on our joints and arteries, making them work harder to maintain us.
I’m not just talking about ten extra pounds. I’m talking about thirty or more extra pounds.
Once you lose weight, you will notice how much easier it is to move. Losing weight can ease joint pain, lower your blood pressure, diminish diabetes, lower the stress on your body and organs, and enhance your ability to move.
The truth is if you have been obese and lost weight, you start to feel when you have added pressure on the joints and when you have shortness of breath from climbing stairs.
Advising against obesity
The problem with being advised to lose weight for health reasons is complicated because it often involves politics, medical bias, social status, body image, stigma, and socioeconomics.
As a result, advising against obesity has also become a health issue that often isn’t addressed in the same medically effective and objective manner as other medical conditions.
But I’m here to tell you that if you are carrying around fifty extra pounds, it impacts you at one level or another. The main level is it increases your chances of developing a chronic disease.
The mediterranean diet
The Mediterranean diet will help you focus on eating more whole foods. The diet calls for fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. You can eat moderate amounts of fish and dairy. Chicken, red meat, eggs, and alcohol are consumed in moderation. Definitely look into it further to see if it’s something that works with your lifestyle.
It’s a great place to start if you are having trouble figuring out what you can eat to lower inflammation.
Foods that exacerbate inflammation
Just to give you an idea of the foods that cause inflammation, here’s a shortlist of the silent killers.
- Refined carbohydrates, such as white bread and pastries
- French fries and other fried foods
- Soda and other sugar-sweetened beverages
- Processed Meat like bologna, sausage, and hot dogs
- Unhealthy oils like vegetable, soybean, corn, canola, sesame, and grapeseed
Foods you should eat more of
These are foods that will give your body the nutrients it needs to thrive without the added side effect of developing a chronic disease.
- Olive oil
- Green leafy vegetables, such as spinach, kale, and collards
- Nuts such as almonds and walnuts
- Fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, tuna, and sardines
- Fruit such as apples, cherries, and oranges
- Eggs (yolks included)
- Nuts like walnuts, almonds, peanuts, and hazelnuts
- Seeds like pumpkin, flax, sunflower, and hemp
- Dark leafy greens like kale, collards, and spinach
- Vegetables like carrots and sweet potatoes
- Berries like strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, and acai berries
- Fresh fruit like red grapes, cherries, peaches, pears, and apricots
- Dried fruit like raisins, dates, and plums
- Dark chocolate, preferably 90% or more cacao
How allergies operate
I’ve mentioned allergies before in the Guide To Getting Abs Fast and Keeping Them, but it’s worth mentioning again.
When you have an allergic reaction, even though it may seem isolated to one part of your body, it is actually impacting your entire body.
Overeating sugar causes some to experience itchy skin. That’s the symptom you notice. The itchy skin is your immune system attempting to flush out the problem.
In some cases, the individual may experience joint stiffness because all immune system efforts have abandoned ship of protecting the rest of the body to stop the sugar from wreaking havoc on your digestive system.
Dealing with trauma
Trauma can inflict any part of your being, including the mind, body, and emotions. That is because imbalances in any of these systems will cause hormonal imbalances that result in inflammation.
So, taking the time out every day to meditate, even if for only 5 minutes, can help keep your mind and emotions in a better balance to lower the risk of increasing cortisol levels.
If you have a physical injury, avoiding further trauma by resting, eating a healthy diet, drinking water, and knowing your limits.
Doing too much, too fast will only cause more trauma.
It is essentially stress management that will help you manage and lower inflammation.
Water is your ally
Water is something else I’ve already mentioned when talking about inflammation.
Whatever our body is made up of, it needs it to survive. Since it’s about 70 percent water, it’s safe to say that one should drink water for healthy brain function and clarity, good energy levels, and physical stamina and performance.
We can live 40 days without cakes and pies and achieve better health, but we cannot live 40 days without water and achieve optimal health.
Think about it.
Sleep is another ally
Sleep and water go hand in hand as they help the body do what it’s made to do, protect us, heal us, and reach heights we never knew existed.
Getting adequate sleep every night, specifically between 10 pm and 2 am, with at least 3 hours of fasting before, lets the kidneys and liver detox toxins from your system and gives you a clean slate each day.
For more on how sleep impacts your overall health, check out 9 Reasons A Lack Of Sleep Hurts Your Overall Wellbeing.
You’re dieting too much
Now I know this may seem crazy but dieting too much will wreak havoc on your gut health. Suppose you are eating Atkins one day, the potato diet the next, and eating cake and ice cream for the next 3 days. In that case, your body will experience some form of inflammation.
Eating too much of one thing can deprive your body of some of the nutrients it needs, resulting in inflammation.
That’s why I recommend carb cycling, the Mediterranean diet, or meal prepping because they give you the ability to eat proteins, fats, and carbs moderately, all of which your body needs to do what it was made to do naturally. It can also help you control your portions while still enjoying the foods you love to eat.
The more deprived you feel, the higher the chances are of you rebounding and sabotaging your progress.
Inflammation is a sign that your body is protecting you from an internal or even external threat. While it is impossible to completely prevent it, we should tune in to our bodies.
The more we pay attention to our bodies and listen to what it’s telling us, we will know what we need to avoid to lower inflammation and be healthier.
If eating dairy causes you to wake up the following day with a stuffy nose, then it’s time to limit dairy. Be mindful this can happen to people who have eaten dairy for years without these symptoms.
Once you decide to limit or cut out what’s causing issues in your body, you will find a healthier replacement that’s better for you in more ways than one.
The less inflammation you have, the more those abs will show.
If you have any questions or concerns that I can assist you with, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I am here to help you feel, look, and become healthier.
And remember, don’t play with your body, you only get one!