Autoimmune and inflammatory diseases are becoming more prevalent and include Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, Grave’s disease, Celiac’s disease, type 2 diabetes, arthritis, eczema, asthma, irritable bowl syndrome and Crohn’s Disease.
Most of us know someone with one of these, and some of us are unlucky enough to have one ourselves.
These diseases occur when our immune system goes wrong and attacks parts of our body, like the thyroid in my case, and/or when our immune system is constantly triggered into activation – Chronic Inflammation.
If having one of those diseases wasn’t bad enough, chronic inflammation also increases the risk of heart disease and stroke (Kristensen et al. 2013) and is linked with 25% of cancers (Eiró and Vizoso 2012). Click here to read my about experience as a carer for Cancer.
It’s really important to be aware of inflammation and to keep it as low as possible.
4 signs of chronic inflammation:
- You’ve been diagnosed with an autoimmune or inflammatory disease
- Tiredness and fatigue
- Muscle and joint aches and pains
- Strange things are happening with your digestion – e.g. you feel you have developed food intolerances, you have lost or gained weight or you are bloated.
(the last 3 points are general signs that something might be wrong and may need further exploration in collaboration with your doctor).
How to reduce inflammation
The best way to ensure we don’t put our body through any unnecessary inflammation is to avoid situations that tend to provoke it. Unfortunately, usually the foods we eat and the lifestyles we lead tend to promote chronic inflammation.
Here are 5 things to cut out today:
- Refined sugar and starches – These trigger the release of inflammatory messengers (cytokines) and are linked with increased intestinal permeability. Want to quit sugar? Contact me HERE.
- Alcohol (see my post “Why I’m going Dry for January”)
- Red meat – the NHS guidelines suggest a daily intake of 70g/day. See what Cancer Research UK has to say about it HERE.
- Stress – does what it says on the tin. Our bodies weren’t designed to be in constant fight or flight mode. Take time to relax, be mindful and look after your body.
- Chemical irritants – Get rid of unnecessary chemicals in and around your home! Help your family and the environment at the same time. Hints and tips for going eco-friendly coming soon!
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Your body and lifestyle are unique and so your inflammation triggers will be.
Get in touch to work out what yours are and start feeling well again!