Inflammation occurs when the body detects an intruder and sends out a response to it. The intruder could be a variety of things. It could be something like a paper cut or touching too hot of a pan. Inflammation also is a symptom of many chronic diseases, like arthritis or metabolic syndrome. We’ll discuss what inflammation is and how to tell if you have it or not.
What is inflammation
Regardless of the cause, there are 2 main types of inflammation that the body endures.
The first, known as acute inflammation, is the rapid change in response to something like cutting our finger. To heal the cut, our body sends out cells to come heal the injury. This recovery process increases inflammation in the short term in order to properly heal the body. The body typically heals quickly, and there is no long-term damage.
Chronic inflammation is the second type of inflammation. This occurs when the body continuously sends inflammatory cells our when the body isn’t in danger anymore. For example, for those with arthritis, your joint muscles are continuously attacked, which can lead to increased pain and selling over time. Chronic inflammation can wax and wane, however, usually presents for a long amount of time.
Signs of inflammation
Typically, those with certain chronic diseases such as diabetes, cancer, Alzheimer’s, or heart disease, have some degree of inflammation in the body. But for those without presenting diseases, it’s important to be in tune with your body and understand whether you are inflamed or not.
Inflammation presents in many ways and can even change over time. Symptoms of inflammation include redness pain, swelling, fever, low energy, bloating, constipation, diarrhea, trouble sleeping, or abdominal pain. When reflecting whether you have inflammation or not, think of your health status each day. Reflect on how you feel physically. Do you have aches and pains? Do you have physical pain in the stomach area? How do you feel mentally? How do you sleep? Reflecting on these aspects of your health can help to determine if you have inflammation in your body, and how severe it is.
Why inflammation is a bad thing
So you have some inflammation, what’s the big deal? When dealing with chronic inflammation, your body’s response can eventually start causing harm within. Long-term inflammation can damage healthy cells, tissues, and organs. Over time, this may even lead to DNA damage, internal scarring, or tissue death. Your quality of life may also be poor, causing you to feel ill both inside and out.
What to do about inflammation
If you feel like you have inflammation, there are some things that you can do to decrease or manage it. Unfortunately, with diseases, we can’t promise to treat or heal certain ones like cancer, heart disease, or arthritis. However, diet and certain lifestyle factors have been shown to help manage or decrease inflammation. To learn how to decrease inflammation through food, Pure Plates has you covered! We provide plenty of anti-inflammatory foods that can help to manage chronic inflammation. We cover more on this topic here.
Other lifestyle changes, outside of food, can also help to manage long term inflammation. First off, we recommend focusing on your sleeping habits. Quality and restful sleep is crucial when it comes to your health. Research shows that those with poor quality sleep have an increased risk of inflammation. Focus on establishing sleep routines or habits that will help you to improve your quality of sleep. We recommend limiting screen time before bed, eating balanced meals with Pure Plates, and meditating before bed.
It’s also important to manage your stress levels. Research demonstrates that high stress levels is associated with increased inflammation markers. Find ways to manage stress such as working out, meditating, or journaling.
Also focus on hydrating your body with plenty of water. Dehydration has been linked to increase inflammation in the body, making hydration crucial. We recommend consuming at least 8 glasses of water per day. To remind yourself to do so, we recommend putting a timer on your phone, setting up sticky notes at your workplace, having a water bottle near you, and eating water-rich foods with Pure Plates.
No matter how you choose to reduce or manage your inflammation, the first step is to identify signs and symptoms that you want to improve on. Next, pick 1-2 things that you can do to better your habits. Find realistic ways you can incorporate better quality sleep, healthier food, more water, and less stress in your everyday routine and life.
Pure plates can take care of the food part for you, the rest is up to you ;)