Inflammation – An Essential Life Process

INFLAMMATION: The essential life process that may be killing you!

Swelling, pain, heat, fever, redness, does this sound like a “good” thing to you?

virus example for inflammation blog by Ron Jahner

Ron Jahner Naturopathic CoachMost of us feel alarmed and are worried when we see these symptoms in ourselves or our loved ones.

And yet, these are all signs and symptoms of a healthy immune system response to trauma or infection!

Inflammation is actually the key process our body uses in fighting against infection, reversing tissue damage and preparing the way for healing a repair.

Inflammation is an absolutely vital, important life function of a health immune system.

Why is Inflammation Bad For You?

Well, it’s also true that inflammation is a key predisposing factor in almost all chronic diseases which disease, cancer, diabetes and long-term infections, chronic digestive tract disorders and auto-immune disorders.

Out of control inflammation is the killer!

The key is understanding how inflammation serves you and what occurs when it becomes a problem.

Let’s use the example of an urban renewal project. You have a number of old, run-down, damaged buildings and your job is to create a beautiful new complex on the site.

What has to happen first?

Well, of course, someone is going to have to tear down the old buildings to make way for the new. This is really the beginning of a 4 step process.

  1. First, blow up or demolish the old buildings.
  2. Secondly, clear up the debris by loading it up and hauling it away.
  3. Thirdly, assemble quality building materials using a skilled crew, and,
  4. Finally, assemble the brand new construction.

In general, inflammation is the key mechanism in your body’s immune system corresponding to the first step in the “tissue-renewal” process.

Inflammation is the essential process that targets infectious agents and damaged tissue for “demolition”. It does this in many ways with a complex biological cascade of molecular and cellular signals and substances that ultimately destroy damaged cells, kill viral and bacterial pathogens all while it also increases circulation!

This sets up steps #2 & #3 of our “tissue-renewal” project. It  transports debris out of the affected area and allow vital nutrients and healing factors back in.

The end result of all these complex processes is that the affected area is ultimately prepared for tissue regeneration and healing.

However, what would happen in our urban renewal project if all we ever did was just keep blowing things up?

  • What if we never hauled out the debris or just erected high screens around the area so no one could see the mess?
  • What if we just cover the whole area with dirt and some sod and pretend theirs no damage underneath?
  • What if we just build really cheap structures on top of this mess that fall apart as fast as we build them?

Is this going to work out well? ….. Of course not!

And, essentially, this is what happens when inflammation is not handled properly in the body and gets out of control.

Unfortunately, current medical thinking is that inflammation is the problem, not part of the natural immune response solution, so let’s just “turn it off” with steroids or other anti-inflammatory drugs!

This is sort of like stopping the demolition crews in the middle of the job and then still expecting quality buildings to show up as if by magic! It’s just not going to work.

When inflammation is arbitrarily blocked before it’s job is done, the underlying issues remain and continue unchecked to produce a bigger problem later on.

Look at heart disease as an example. Arterial tissue becomes damaged due to improper diet, emotional distress, lack of sleep, lack of proper exercise, etc.

Inflammation targets this damaged tissue to clean it up and prepare for healing.

Just “turning off” the inflammation doesn’t change the underlying condition anymore than giving an athlete a steroid injection in a damaged knee so they can keep playing fixes the underlying injury. In fact it opens it up to further harm.

When the damage continues in the circulatory system, the body sends cholesterol to the damaged area as a sort of “band-aid” to cover over the lesion and prevent further damage.

Again, just shutting down cholesterol doesn’t help the underlying condition and may make it much worse!!

So, what is the solution to chronic Inflammation?

In our urban renewal program, what would you do if the demolition team was not up to the amount of work needed to demolish the old structures?

What if the roads in and out of the work site were congested or there weren’t enough dump trucks to haul the debris?

This is the kind of thinking that a holistic approach to healing uses to deal with inflammation!

So, instead of shutting down inflammation, how do we help it do it’s job so it can stop naturally?

Here are the strategies I have used in some 30 years of work as a naturopathic health consultant:

  1. HYDRATE!! – Fluids, fluids, fluids. Drink at least 1 liter of water per 50 pounds of body weight daily to enhance the circulatory function inflammation requires to do its job.
  2. REST! – Inflammation is a healing-immune function. It requires the parasympathetic (resting) nervous system state to do it’s job. Most people never get the amount of quality sleep and rest the body requires to be healthy, especially when it is damaged or ill.
  3. NO SUGAR! – Eliminate refined carbohydrates that create havoc in the body’s digestive tract and metabolic function. Quality proteins and vegetables, especially vegetable juices, to provide easily – to – absorb nutrition to support immune functions.
  4. ENZYMES! – This is the first line of defense to help inflammation do its job. After you hydrate, rest and eliminate sugars, taking supplemental enzymes can have a miraculous effect on clearing inflammation and supporting healting.However, it requires a particular form of enzymes called “proteolytics”. These are concentrated protein digesting enzymes without the hydrochloric acid or bile salts or fiber in many digestive enzyme products.And you take them on an empty stomach, even hourly, and not just with food as you would digestive enzyme products.
  5. B-12 – Vitamin B-12 has enormous potential to help with inflammation and stress. It can be take frequently in a crisis to help speed up healing and tissue repair.
  6. BOSWELLIA – TURMERIC – GINGER. – These three herbal products have been used for generations to help reduce inflammation naturally while supporting the body’s healing processes.Taken as tea or in capsules they are often prescribed in Ayuvedic and Traditional Chinese medicine.
  7. Flavonoids are key nutritional pigments (red, yellow, orange, blue) found in natural foods, often with Vitamin C ascorbate complexes, which have been used extensively for enhancing immune response and reducing inflammation naturally.Flavonoids are very high in anti-oxidant activity and help neutralize free radical damage in tissues.
  8. EFA’s Essential Fatty Acids, oils that are necessary for health healing and regulating inflammation. These include Omega 3 and Omega 6 oils such as high-quality fish oil, virgin olive oil, Evening Primrose oil, sesame oil, etc.
  9. ATTITUDE! This may be the most important factor of all because it often enhances and makes everything above work effectively.Neutralizing the body’s stress overload with breathing techniques and emotional releasing processes can dramatically reduce inflammation and promote healing.

Yes, inflammation can be a curse, or it can be a wonderful blessing.

Which it is for you is often in your control.

Nurture the immune system’s inflammatory mechanisms well and it will protect and heal you.

Ignore it at your peril.

More about the blog poster:
Ron Jahner is a Naturopathic Healer, Coach, Trainer & Educator with 30+ years of experience in natural healthcare. Find him on Facebook,

Leaky Gut – It’s really Inflammation

Leaky Gut

How Does Inflammation in the Gut Impact You 

Leaky GutMost people think of inflammation as something that happens in the joints or when there is an external injury. The one place commonly unrecognized for inflammation is in the gut. This creates damage to the lining of the intestinal tract which can even create holes that allow undigested food into the bloodstream. This is known as leaky gut and it leaks dangerous toxins into the bloodstream that inflame internal organs such as the brain.

These toxins are seen as a physical invasion by the immune system and it reacts. When the immune system reacts to an undigested food particle it creates an acquired food allergy. This can also lead to autoimmune diseases. The immune system is left on high alert and it eventually wears out.

What Foods Contribute to Leaky Gut?

Some of the most common foods that cause inflammation in the gut are gluten, (the protein in wheat), casein, (the protein in dairy), corn, sugar, and soy. These foods should be reduced or eliminated, especially if digestion is a problem. For additional information on foods impacting the gut read Breaking the Vicious Cycle by Elaine Gottschall. She talks about using the Specific Carbohydrate Diet to help reduce inflammation and heal the gut. 

How Can You Heal a Leaky Gut?

Some supplements can assist in reducing inflammation in the body. Specific enzymes and probiotics can assist in reducing the inflammation and healing the gut. One of my favorites is also omega 3 fatty acids for their multiple uses. They reduce inflammation, assist vision, and help the brain to function while also protecting it. Bone broth is also very healing to the gut.

Karen Thomas

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Listen to Karen’s radio/podcast at www.autismone.org.

Enzymes for Therapeutic Reduction of Inflammation

Enzymes are well known for their benefits in digestion, but they can be very effective when it comes to reducing inflammation. When enzymes are taken away from food, 30 minutes before or 60 minutes after a meal, they can offer different benefits depending on the formula.
Inflammation can have many causes. Allergies, autoimmune issues, joint pain and arthritis are just a few. It can be isolated in one area or become systemic throughout the body as in rheumatoid arthritis and many autoimmune disorders.
Enzymes are both natural and safe and can automatically target inflammation anywhere in the body when used therapeutically. When talking about enzymes the word “therapeutically” refers to treating something specific, and being taken away from food, so that they do not get used working to digest, and are free to work elsewhere in the body. There are no harmful side effects like there are with aspirin or pharmaceutical drugs.

Two Great Enzyme Products to Assist Reducing Inflammation:
1. The enzyme product Wobenzyme N is one of the best sources for the natural, and safe reduction of inflammation. It has been used for over fifty years and is trusted by Olympic athletes to help assist in healing injuries by over 50%. Wobenzyme helps to clean up toxic debris in the body, and is known for its ability to reduce blood clots, therefore, helping lower the incidence of stroke. It also helps to reduce heart attacks by lowering cholesterol. This offers a safe alternative to dangerous pharmaceutical drugs.
2. The enzyme product Serrapeptase is also a great choice for reducing inflammation. It is known to ease both pain and swelling. Serrapeptase has a twenty five year history of being both safe and effective.

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When Clean Eating Doesn’t Cut it: Gut Health for Better Fitness

Gut Health for Better Fitness

 

You dedicate your life to a healthy routine: clean eating, supplementation, workouts, and a 10:30 pm bedtime. But what if all that hard work is being undone by poor gut health?

The digestive system is really the engine of our well-being, as it is involved in so many processes. If our digestive system is in check, we feel awesome, we can perform at the top level, and we even can push ourselves harder to make bigger gains in the gym.

Read more When Clean Eating Doesn’t Cut it: Gut Health for Better Fitness

Veggies with Benefits: DIY Fermented Veggies

homemade pickles

A five-year study headed up by the Human Microbiome Project, which includes 200 researchers from 80 universities, found that the human body is made up of more microbes than human cells.

That’s right–we’re all just sacks of seething bacteria! Now before you freak out, remember that the word ‘bacteria’ has been given negative connotations by the hand sanitizer-fueled paranoia of the germ police. Bacteria come in good varieties too.

Read more Veggies with Benefits: DIY Fermented Veggies