Health & Fitness: Understanding the ‘inflammation spectrum’ might be the key to fighting chronic inflammation - - PressFrom - United Kingdom
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Health & Fitness Understanding the ‘inflammation spectrum’ might be the key to fighting chronic inflammation

09:25  21 october  2019
09:25  21 october  2019 Source:   wellandgood.com

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What is inflammation ? Inflammation refers to your body’s process of fighting against things that harm it Over time, chronic inflammation may have a negative impact on your tissues and organs. What are the symptoms of chronic inflammation ? Acute inflammation often causes noticeable symptoms

Prolonged inflammation , known as chronic inflammation , leads to a progressive shift in the type of Inflammation on the other hand describes purely the body's immunovascular response, whatever the cause An acronym that may be used to remember the key symptoms is "PRISH", for pain, redness

a person talking on a cell phone: types of inflammation © Photo: Getty Images/ m-imagephotography types of inflammation

Typically when people talk about medical conditions, it's either in terms of something they do or don't have: I'm gluten-intolerant. My son has diabetes. My grandmother has Alzheimer's. 

But unlike many other medical diagnoses, inflammation isn't so black and white. In his new book, The Inflammation Spectrum, functional medicine expert Will Cole, DC, argues that inflammation occurs in degrees—and actually, some inflammation is good. Here, Dr. Cole and How Not To Die author Michael Greger, MD, explain what exactly the inflammation spectrum is, and how to pinpoint what's causing it in your body.

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Inflammation is the body's response to injury. It works to heal wounds, but it can also play a role in some chronic diseases. Chronic inflammation has been linked to certain diseases such as heart disease or stroke, and may also lead to autoimmune disorders, such as rheumatoid arthritis and lupus.

Inflammation aids wound healing, but chronic inflammation can cause conditions such as asthma or rheumatoid arthritis. While these dietary solutions do not alone hold the key to controlling inflammation , they can help prime the immune system to react in a measured way.

What exactly is the inflammation spectrum?

Here's the thing to understand about inflammation: It's not inherently bad. "Inflammation is a product of our immune systems and it's needed to fight viruses and bad bacteria, so that's the good part," Dr. Cole says. Dr. Greger adds that inflammation is the trigger for healing to begin. "Think about if you get a splinter," he says. "The area becomes red and swollen, which is the body's natural reaction to the irritation and alerts you to take care of the problem." Without inflammation, Dr. Greger says, the body would be compromised—whether it's by a splinter, bad bacteria in food, or something else—and the problem would go ignored and cause a major disruption later on.

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St. Jude Children's Research Hospital scientists have discovered a subset of helper T cells that may help to redefine understanding and treatment of chronic , debilitating These cells can also fuel the destructive inflammation in autoimmune disorders like multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis.

Chronic inflammation , or “silent” inflammation , works differently. It is not a response to sudden injury, but rather a constant, low-level process lasting several months or Reliv consumers have reported a wide range of health benefits over the years, and now science may be uncovering why that is .

  Understanding the ‘inflammation spectrum’ might be the key to fighting chronic inflammation © Getty Broadly speaking, there are two types of inflammation. "Short-term, localized, acute inflammation is good, but it's when it's high level and chronic that it becomes a problem," Dr. Greger says. Dr. Cole calls this balance the Goldilocks principle. "You need it to be just right," he says. "It's not inherently bad, but if it's out of balance, that's a problem."

  Understanding the ‘inflammation spectrum’ might be the key to fighting chronic inflammation © Getty This is where the "inflammation spectrum," which Dr. Cole coins in his new book, comes into play. He says that inflammatory symptoms exist on a spectrum with varying degrees of seriousness, and what moves it in one direction or the other depends on the individual. His goal with helping people understand inflammation existing in this way is for them not only to pinpoint their unique inflammatory triggers, but also to address problematic inflammation before it develops into a potentially chronic condition.

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to help tame chronic inflammatory diseases like multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis. subset of helper T cells that may help to redefine understanding and treatment of chronic , debilitating T-bet is associated with elevated levels of interferon gamma, a molecule that fuels inflammation and

Six Keys to Reducing Inflammation . Early symptoms of chronic inflammation may be vague, with subtle signs and symptoms that may go undetected for a long period. The most common way to measure inflammation is to conduct a blood test for C-reactive protein (hs-CRP), which is a marker of

  Understanding the ‘inflammation spectrum’ might be the key to fighting chronic inflammation © Getty Dr. Cole says there are many signs as to when inflammation is starting to get problematic, such as feeling tired all the time, irregular mood, a constant, low-level of anxiety, problems with digestion, trouble sleeping, difficulty losing weight, and brittle hair and nails. "Think of these signs as the check engine light being on," he says. "It's time to look under the hood."

What to do when inflammation gets out of hand

  Understanding the ‘inflammation spectrum’ might be the key to fighting chronic inflammation © Getty So what does a person do if they notice their proverbial "check engine light" seems to be on? Both Dr. Cole and Dr. Greger say functional medicine doctors will likely want to run lab tests to check out a patient's C-reactive protein (hsCRP) levels. "This is an inflammatory protein and the test will show how much of it you have," Dr. Cole explains. The reason both doctors recommend it is because high levels of it have been directly linked to chronic inflammation-based health conditions, including heart disease, arthritis, and infection.

For people worried about their general inflammation levels, Dr. Cole also recommends trying a temporary elimination diet to pinpoint any food-related causes that could be causing inflammation in your body. (He adds that gut health kits can help with this detective work, too.) What's tricky about inflammation, Dr. Cole says, is that there are some factors that can cause inflammation for everyone (such as sugar, environmental toxins, and chronic stress). But other culprits are unique to your body. Dairy, for example, causes inflammation in some people, but not all.

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Chronic inflammation often begins with the same cellular response, but morphs into a lingering state that persists for months or years when the immune system response fails to eliminate the problem. Alternatively, the inflammation may stay active even after the initial threat has been eliminated.

When seeking to understand the effects of inflammation , it helps to first understand the causes of inflammation and the differences between acute and In the case of chronic inflammation , you may not have to go any further than the end of your fork. Your diet is , by far, the most controllable factor in

  Understanding the ‘inflammation spectrum’ might be the key to fighting chronic inflammation © Getty

Of course inflammation isn't just linked to food. Not getting enough sleep or constant stress can also move the needle on the inflammation spectrum—which is why it's so important to manage stress and prioritize healthy sleep habits, too.

When it comes to viewing inflammation as a spectrum, what's most helpful is being aware of the first signs that your body is experiencing too much of it. Being in tune with your body and tweaking your lifestyle accordingly is a continual process that will benefit your health in the end.

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a person sitting on a couch: Inflammation is an immune response of the body trying to heal itself. But if the inflammation stems from a problem that is not treated, chronic inflammation can set in, which is an underlying cause of diseases ranging from arthritis to cancer. Understanding the hidden causes of chronic inflammation, as well as some lifestyle hacks to treat and prevent it, can go a long way toward helping you stay healthy. Here are signs of inflammation to watch for, common causes, and natural anti-inflammatories to include in your routine.    Note: The following is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice or treatment.      Related:    15 Weird Ways Your Body Is Telling You to Go to the Doctor

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