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It seems like everyone is talking about inflammation these days.  And rightly so! More and more studies are linking chronic inflammation to serious health issues and diseases like: cancer, diabetes, heart disease, depression, fibromyalgia and Alzheimer’s just to name a few.  SONY DSC

Wait a minute!  Isn’t inflammation a healthy response to an injury? 

You’re right! But, there are 2 types of inflammation: acute and chronic.  Acute inflammation is the body’s natural response to an injury or infection. We depend on acute inflammation to help us heal when we get hurt.   Inflammation becomes chronic when it doesn’t shut down and persists over time.    Chronic inflammation is the body’s response to ongoing lifestyle stresses like: poor diet, lack of sleep, stress, and lack of exercise.   Has your body been trying to warn you that something is wrong?  Common warning signs of chronic inflammation include:

  • Digestive Issues
  • Frequent Headaches
  • High Blood Pressure
  • Sleep Issues
  • Low Energy
  • Skin Issues
  • Chronic Fatigue
  • Aching Muscles and Joints
  • Allergies
  • Mood Issues

Reduce Inflammation –  Naturally! 

Did any of the warning signs above ring a bell?  The most important thing is not to ignore the signals your body is sending you.  Left unchecked, chronic inflammation can lead to serious health issues and disease over time.  The good news is there are ways to reduce inflammation – naturally!  Try to include more of these anti-inflammatory foods in your diet:

  • Fresh Whole Foods (fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts and seeds)
  • Omega 3 Fats (wild salmon, flaxseeds, walnuts, extra virgin olive oil)
  • Green Tea
  • Garlic
  • Herbs (basil, chili peppers, curcumin, turmeric, ginger, parsley, rosemary, and thyme)

To reduce inflammation, reduce or avoid the following:

  • Processed, Packaged and Prepared Foods
  • Hydrogenated and Trans Fats (found in margarine, shortening, lard or products made with them including commercially baked goods)
  • Smoking, Caffeine, and Alcohol
  • Fried Foods (French fries, chips hamburgers etc)
  • Sugar and Sweets
  • Synthetic Sweeteners (Aspartame, Splenda, Nutrasweet)
  • Red Meat
  • Dairy Products
  • Wheat Products and Other Grains Containing Gluten

Unfortunately, there is no miracle cure for chronic inflammation.  A natural approach may take a little more time and effort but your health is worth it!  What will you do to reduce inflammation in your body?   Please share in the comments section below – I’d love to hear from you!  Do you know someone who suffers from chronic inflammation?  Feel free to share this blog with them.