What Your Chiropractor Knows About Chronic Inflammation
Chronic inflammation is being discussed a lot in wellness circles lately, but the average person may not know much about this mysterious condition that’s the cause of some of the deadliest health conditions known to man. Here’s what your chiropractor knows about chronic inflammation (that you should know too).
What It Is
Inflammation in itself is not harmful. In fact, it’s a normal and healthy attempt by the body to preserve itself. Inflammation helps remove harmful debris like irritants and pathogens from the body so that the healing process can begin. The problem begins when regular inflammation becomes chronic. At this point, the body creates more inflammation in direct response to the existing inflammation—a cycle that can have dire consequences.
What Causes It
Chronic inflammation is caused by an imbalance in the immune system. Your acquired immune system develops over time via exposure to our environment and exposure and the more successes it has, the stronger it becomes. That’s why it’s important for us to avoid taking unnecessary antibiotics—learning to fight bugs and allergens makes our acquired immune system stronger. In addition, certain foods and lifestyles can increase the risk of chronic inflammation. Not getting enough rest, too much stress and a high carbohydrate diet are all a good way to increase your risk of chronic inflammation. Chronic inflammation can also be the result of the body’s inability to eliminate the cause of acute inflammation or an autoimmune response where the immune system mistakes healthy tissue for unhealthy pathogens.
Signs and Symptoms
Most people don’t find out that they have chronic inflammation until they’re diagnosed with a disease that’s associated with it. Rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease and multiple sclerosis are all conditions that are frequently associated with chronic inflammation. However, you don’t have to wait until you’ve been diagnosed with a life threatening illness to treat this condition. Other signs include:
- Allergies and asthma
- High blood pressure
- Fatigue and lethargy
- Skin problems
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Pain in the joints
- Frequent infections
- Shortness of breath
- Weight gain
How Your Chiropractor Can Help
Your chiropractor is the best partner you could ever ask for in the fight against chronic inflammation. Studies have shown that adjustments help reduce the production of two inflammatory cytokines, which can reduce inflammation throughout the body. However, your chiropractic team can assist you in the fight against chronic inflammation in other ways too.
Chronic inflammation responds very well to lifestyle changes. Your chiropractic team can talk to you about how to begin an anti-inflammation diet that’s filled with nutrient-dense, low calorie foods like fresh fruits and vegetables, lean meat and fish. Supplements like vitamin D and magnesium may also provide relief from chronic inflammation.
Many chiropractors are suggesting that their patients increase the amount of essential fatty acids in their diet. Most Americans don’t eat enough omega-3 fatty acids like those found in dark green leafy vegetables, nuts, canola oil, flax and fish. While supplementing can help some patients, most experts agree that we should all endeavor to eat fish like salmon that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids at least twice per week.
Exercise, proper nutrition and regular chiropractic care can go a long way toward treating a variety of health problems, including chronic inflammation. If you’re experiencing the symptoms of chronic inflammation, it’s time to make a change. Contact your chiropractor today to find out how to finally reach a level of wellness you never thought possible.
Always consult your chiropractor or primary care physician for all your health related advice.