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Inflammation – this usually happens when we have an injury or illness. It is the body’s natural response and method, however, there are times when the body has inflammatory responses to environmental toxins, chronic stress, autoimmune issues, pesticides in our food. Our military lifestyle does not help with burning the candle at both ends, keeping the home fire lit and worrying about the ins and outs of our spouses’ jobs even when we tell ourselves not to worry!
So what does that mean? Well acute inflammation is responsible for injuries and illnesses, but chronic inflammation is responsible for the breakdowns of parts of our bodies. It leads to things like diabetes, heart disease, poor sleep, poor serotonin production, a desire to inhale excess carbs, especially things that boost our happiness level and that in turn leads to gut inflammation. All of this chronic inflammation, advanced aging, and higher levels of oxidative stress.
What can you do to combat chronic inflammation?
One of the first things you can add to your weekly routine is yoga. Even if you do not like the posture portion of yoga, the breath work will add to your quality of life. Yoga has been proven to significantly lower cortisol levels, slow the aging process, lower blood pressure, and reduce inflammation. Additionally, it also increases Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) when this protein is elevated, it increases the neuroplasticity of the brain and promotes brain development which in turn lowers risks for Alzheimer’s, depression, and anxiety. This is the type of breathing I would suggest if you would like to forego the actual yoga class: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8VwufJrUhic)
Meditation and Journaling
Meditation and Journaling are a lot like Yoga in the benefits it offers. When you retain the mind and focus on calming techniques, or use a journal to let go of your thoughts (all of them not just the ones you think are bothering you), it actually releases endorphins. Endorphins reduce physical pain, relaxes the muscles reducing inflammatory markers such as balancing the adrenals and lowering cortisol levels.
I’m a firm believer that food is medicine. Harvard Health has a fantastic anti-inflammatory diet.
(https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/foods-that-fight-inflammation) However, if you feel like you are having autoimmune inflammation the AIP or autoimmune protocol is a better choice. (https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/aip-diet-autoimmune-protocol-diet)
These two are lifestyle overhauls and I recognize that’s a huge change. So that said, here is a list of simple things to add to your diet to support yourself.
Herbs that lower inflammation specifically:
Garlic, Ginger, Cardamon, black pepper, ginseng, green tea, cinnamon, rosemary, bromelain, vitamin d, spirulina, curcumin, resveratrol, fish oil, ashwagandha,
Okay, so what do you do with all of this?
You can take a high-quality pressed fish oil
You can do those all individually. I actually did for years. You can hit the local Vitamin Shoppe and buy the cleanest version of each herb you can find! If you want them individually, I do like the ashwagandha as a tincture.
After a while, this got to be a little too difficult.
Now I take something called Protandim NRF2, Nrf1. These 2 hit almost all the herbs above.
NRF2 – is turmeric, bacopa, ashwagandha, green tea, and milk thistle
Nrf1 – is quercetin, coQ10, grape extract (resveratrol), Alpha Lipolic Acid,
Vitality Stack on LifeVantage
A little info on Protandim – https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/?term=protandim&sort=pubdate
One of the last things I can recommend Is fasting. If you fast for 48-72 hours your body will use the food loss as a means of reducing your inflammation, improving cognitive function, and helping reset the body to improve chronic inflammatory issues.
If you’re not eligible to fast, you could look at NAD. NAD is the precursor to sirtuins and they regulate inflammation.