top of page

Inflammation... The Reason & The Downfall.

I think we’ve all heard about inflammation in one way or another. This post is about the good reasons we have inflammation and how inflammation can be harmful.


Let’s look at why inflammation happens. We injure a joint, or sustain an impact. Our body responds by sending out extra fluids that can help heal tissues and/or fight infection. YAY body! Good right? That is acute inflammation.


Inflammation due to injury of hand

Now, if you’d read a few of my posts already, this next reaction may sound familiar.


What happens when your body senses danger like stress or anxiety and decides to send out the same response? If that happens once in a while, not so bad. But it this response is happening everyday, this is where there is a chronic inflammation problem.


Now, I know what you may be thinking. No, this isn’t happening, my body wouldn’t react like this. I feel fine for the most part, I just have pain.


Well, it is possible. Apart from the obvious stress & anxiety, would you like to know another reason why the body has so much inflammation?


Ultra Processed Foods (UPF) leads directly to inflammation!

Lifestyle & diet also play a part. Smoking, alcohol, sugar (1), & ultra processed foods (2) are all huge contributors to the levels of inflammation in our body. So let’s cut that out! Argh, don’t jump the gun too fast. We all know that if we make huge changes, strict rules, all at once, we are bound to fail.

Recommendation: Take the next 2 days and write down everything that you eat/consume. Here is the trick. Do this WITHOUT judgment. Can you? Try it. Remember though, no judgment. This is a process. Trust it. Next step… look at your list 2 days later and choose one thing to adjust. Not strip out, not drastically change, just find a way to adjust it towards a step forward.

Now, there is one more concept that leads itself to increased levels of inflammation in the body. That is the amount of fat stores that we have on our body.


Increased fat stores on our bodies lead to increased inflammatory responses.

First. I don’t want this to be about weight. Though I do want you to know that the higher amount of fat that you store in your body increases the inflammatory reaction that your body has. So if you have more fat stores then your body will perpetuate the inflammatory response.


Now, how do we recognize this response in the body without making it about weight? Well, that is the grey area we need to live in.


Ever since I’ve learned this, I have been shifting this into a level of curiosity. Last summer I wasn’t as active as I usually am and I gained weight. I noticed in the fall my back pain was coming back and becoming more of an issue in my day to day life. So, with all the learning that I have done, I turned it on myself. In learning the relationship between fat stores and inflammation I added in ‘watching my pro-inflammatory intake’.


To be honest… This is not something that I do (i.e. watch my weight), but I was curious. So I weighed in at 164lbs and made conscious decisions for the next 2 months about habits and food intake. Basically I lowered my sugar (chocolate) intake and alcohol intake. While I am already conscious of my ultra-processed food intake, I did pay a little more attention here as well (it is phenomenal how UPF is everywhere!).


Yes, I am already fairly active, walking my dog 2-3x a day (about 3-5000 steps each walk) and strength & mobility training, but that one inactive summer (almost no cycling or hiking) combined with a lack of schedule and likely more eating out, made a big difference in my fat stores.


So where am I at now? Last time I checked the scale I was sitting at 152lbs. In terms of how my back is feeling, I still have moments when it is cranky, but nothing like it was last fall when I was positive that I would need another nerve ablation (yes, even I rely on the medical system for procedures if needed).


Make life bigger! Pain smaller.

I didn’t make any drastic changes, I just became more conscious about the decisions I made.


So, what do you do now with this knowledge? First, pat yourself on the back for learning a little more today! Then scroll back up and read the ‘recommendation’ again. That is your first step. Remember, this isn’t about making drastic changes, small changes over time produce better results.


Need a little more guidance? Message me and we’ll build your path back to wellness together!


 

1

Ma X, Nan F, Liang H, Shu P, Fan X, Song X, Hou Y, Zhang D. Excessive intake of sugar: An accomplice of inflammation. Front Immunol. 2022 Aug 31;13:988481. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2022.988481. PMID: 36119103; PMCID: PMC9471313.


2

Elizabeth L, Machado P, Zinöcker M, Baker P, Lawrence M. Ultra-Processed Foods and Health Outcomes: A Narrative Review. Nutrients. 2020 Jun 30;12(7):1955. doi: 10.3390/nu12071955. PMID: 32630022; PMCID: PMC7399967.

9 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Comments


bottom of page