Systemic inflammation is the body's defense in action as it protects us against pathogens. However, when inflammation increases in our bodies as we age, ingest toxins, or eat high-fat foods and decrease our intake of healthy fruits and vegetables, it begins attacking our body in unfavorable ways!
For instance, it attacks our endothelial cells. What are these? Simply put, they make up the lining of many of our tissues such as blood vessels and the digestive tract, as examples. Needless to say, this is how heart disease, cancers, accelerated aging, and many other degenerative diseases begin to smolder in our body, only to rear their ugly head one day!
You learned earlier about the perils of Oxidative Stress. Well, oxidative stress can actually cause systemic inflammation and systemic inflammation can cause oxidative stress!
Sounds hopeless, doesn't it? Well, it is not hopeless. Remember there are ways to avoid inflammation and oxidative stress. You can do this by eating an Anti-Inflammation Diet, that includes eating your five servings of fruits and vegetables, taking a pharmaceutical grade, whole-food based supplement for inflammation, such as TrueBasics A/O and TrueOMEGA, and adding certain spices and foods to your diet!
More and more research is pointing to the fact that heart disease, the world's number one preventative cause of death, is a disease caused by inflammation, not necessarily cholesterol!
You may be surprised to know that eating a healthy diet that includes raw almonds, reduces chronic inflammation as well as a first generation statin drug! This was the result of a study regarding C-reactive protein by researchers in 2005 (Jenkins). Why almonds? Because they contain gamma tocopherol, which is another subject for another time! Food facts such as these can be found in our Special Report, Anti-Inflammation Diet.
C-Reactive Protein, called CRP, is an identified clinical marker of inflammation. There are several clinical markers of inflammation but this is the principal one. In other words, if you have High C Reactive Protein, you are much more inclined to have a heart attack. In a study by Harvard cardiologist, Paul Ridker, he identified that those with low levels of CRP (less than .5mg/L) rarely have heart attacks. However, those with levels greater than 3 mg/L have three times the risk of heart attack or stroke (Ridker,2002)!
Again, the research points to the risk of heart disease occurring and being predicted by levels of CRP, rather than high cholesterol. He does go on to state that high cholesterol can pose a danger if previously weakened by oxidative stress or inflammation. Sounds like a vicious circle!
According to MacWilliam (2007), systemic inflammation is involved in the following diseases:
The bad news is that systemic inflammation is often very silent and is occurring without your knowledge. However, you can take preventive measures to reduce inflammation and reduce your chances of contracting these diseases.
Make sure that you include a high-grade fish oil with high-dose omega-3 oils. Include polyphenols and lipoic acid, commonly found in high quality nutritional supplements, such as TrueBasics A/O. Of course, Vitamin C needs to also have a place in your daily eating habits. To find more detailed information, sign up for our free report, Anit-Inflammation Diet, and ensure that you are taking steps in preventing inflammation in your body!
Jenkins, DJ. (2005). Direct comparison of dietary portfolio vs statin on c-reactive protein. Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 59(7), 851-60.
Ridker, PM. (2002). Prospective study of C-reactive protein, homocysteine, and plasma lipid levels as predictors of udden cardiac death. Circulation, 105(22), 2595-9.
MacWilliam, l. (2007). Nutrisearch comparative guide to nutritional supplements. Vernon, Canada: Northern Dimension Publishing.