Inflammation is the body’s natural response to injury, viruses, pathogens, bacteria’s. We need inflammation to kick protectors into doing their job and then switch off. The problem with inflammation is when it doesn’t switch off and when it becomes chronic.
When you fall down and get a cut on your knee, the area around your knee swells up and it becomes red because your vessels dilate and rushes blood towards that area to heal it. The blood also starts clotting and it slows down so that you don’t bleed to death. Now your immune system starts producing a high amount of WBC’s that’s white blood cells to fight any infection or bacteria. At the same time your cells around the injured area start multiplying and dividing to repair the injured area quickly. All of this is inflammation.
Sometimes even when you get sunburned or when you are exposed to too much of sun the redness that you see is inflammation kicked in by your immune system to protect the healthy cells around the area. That’s good inflammation. We need it to protect us. The problem is when inflammation doesn’t go back to its normal.
Inflammation kicks in to protects you, it does its job and then it needs to switch off. Chronic inflammation is the number one cause of most diseases. Right from heart attacks to strokes to cardiac arrests to cancer because we all know cancer is an inflammatory disease and when you find it difficult to lose weight, the reason could be chronic inflammation.
Stress also causes chronic inflammation. When we are stressed the body may not multiply the number of WBC’s but it increases a certain protein marker in your blood called CRP that is C – reactive protein and when there is more protein because of an emotional issue that causes chronic inflammation in your body that can lead to further disease.
Your heart has vessels and these vessels and arteries when clogged with plaque or cholesterol causes cardiac arrest. But inflammation is the number one cause because you have endothelial cells that line your vessels in the heart and this inflames. Sugar, salt, improper lifestyle, too much of overeating all of that causes inflammation and irritation of these endothelial cells that induces inflammation. Inflammation sends out signals to your immune system, your immune system over reacts when the inflammation is chronic and we have heart disease.
IBS which is irritable bowel syndrome, colitis, indigestion, flatulence, bloating and Crohn’s disease is nothing but chronic inflammation. Most of the digestion of food finally happens in your small intestine. Your small intestine then breaks down all this food into a nutrient which moves between the intestinal wall into your blood and that’s how nutrients move from the food that we digest into your blood. But in most cases undigested food sometimes moves between this intestinal wall into your blood and when undigested food moves into your blood your immune system kicks into overdrive. Because that undigested food is a foreign particle in your blood and your immune system flares up trying to attack it because it’s a foreign body. This constantly happens because of the kind of food that we eat, the way we eat when we eat too fast when we don’t have enough of digestive enzymes to break down the food molecules into smaller molecules that can be digested assimilated and moved into your blood. Then we have IBS, constipation, bloating, stomach cancers.
So IBS is mainly stress-related and proper improper digestion of food. It is one of the most easily curable diseases because it’s all related to lifestyle and the way we break down food. So sometimes this intestinal walls are broken because you have a larger food molecules passing through these walls and seeping into your blood, which means you have chronic inflammation at all times and chronic inflammation causes disease.
Inflammation could be the reason why you don’t lose weight. When you have inflammation because of the junk food that you eat too much sugar too much of salt you now have insulin resistance which means your cells stop responding to insulin and you have higher blood sugar levels and higher levels storage of fat. When you have chronic inflammation your metabolic rate decreases, you have hunger cravings which mean you upset the biological chemical and physiological working of your cells. You have a hormonal imbalance and that is what prevents you from losing weight even though you may start eating right and you may start exercising.
Reduce inflammation and you have a stronger immunity that’s not working in overdrive. Immunity is great for us but immunity that’s constantly working in overdrive can actually be fatal that can actually produce innumerable amount of diseases and ailments. Arthritis of the knees is caused because of inflammation. There is pain, your body responds to pain by putting on the inflammation switch that because of our bad lifestyle habits because of excess salt and sugar and inactivity the inflammation switch does not go off and that makes your arthritis worse.
How to Reduce Inflammation
We reduce inflammation by changing the way we eat. It’s not just what we put in our mouths, that’s how we do it, how we assimilate it in that digestive system and how it gets digested. So we use saliva from chewing that generates enzymes that help you digest your food better. We eat the right kinds of foods. We reduce the amount of junk and process which causes nothing but inflammation in the arteries of your heart, in your body, in your joints everywhere. Cancer for example; more stomach cancers and most colon cancers are caused because of the kind of food that we eat and the way we eat. It’s not just smoking it’s not just obesity today. Most colon cancer patients and stomach cancer patients have never smoked in their lives. This means that the kind of food that they’ve been eating is the number one cause of their cancer along with lifestyle. So no matter how much outside food you eat whether it’s a five-star hotel or whether it’s a good restaurant you have no control over the ingredients they use, the oil they use, the salt they use and the way of preparation. You are better off with home food and that should be a goal for every one of us.
We can control inflammation by moving to a plant-based diet for two weeks and you will reduce inflammation in your arteries and in your body. Remove dairy for two weeks and you will see that your inflammation levels come down consistently. My book, The Great Indian Diet has enough of natural foods which are anti-inflammatory in nature ranging from your onions to your turmeric, cinnamon, garlic, tomatoes which are cooked. All your fruits are anti-inflammatory in nature; all your raw vegetables are anti-inflammatory in nature. You need to remember that cooked food also creates inflammation in the body. Cooked food when enters your intestines produces more WBC’s because your WBC is actually raised to handle the toxins from cooked food because cooked food is devoid of raw enzymes that actually help you to digest.