Can inflammation be good? Absolutely! In this episode of Wellness Radio, we discussed the purpose of inflammation in the body so you can know when inflammation is good and when you need to do something to lower it.
Inflammation in the body has many root causes and leads to many different types of illnesses. Lower back pain, neck pain, headaches, fibromyalgia, chronic pain, digestive issues, irritable bowel syndrome, Crohn's disease and inflammation of small joints like fingers or toes are all things that can be symptoms of inflammation in the body.
This list is pretty wide and by no means exhaustive which is why instead of treating symptoms of each of these ailments, we believe it’s best to find the root cause of your discomfort to not only treat the symptom but heal the body totally so that they do not reoccur.
Inflammation is a healing process so it is beneficial when there’s a problem. If you were to see the inflammation process before your eyes, this might look like painfully rolling your ankle while running and seeing your ankle swell. As a result, it gets really hot and painful along with being swollen.
This happens for a number of reasons. Firstly, your body is signaling to you to stay off your ankle as it tries to heal itself, hence the pain if you try to walk. The swelling is a signal to your body to increase blood flow to that area to help rebuild damaged cells. The body is capable of healing itself and so if you allow the inflammation to run its course, you may be able to heal a small issue like an ankle swelling without taking medications that may have its own harmful side effects.
This will depend on your pain threshold and so may not be appropriate for larger and more painful root causes of acute inflammation. However, we’re pointing out the fact that it’s ok to allow the body to heal itself in some instances without being dependent on pills and potions for every discomfort.
Inflammation fights off bacterial infections, viral infections and even ailments such as cancer and heart disease, one study shows. The study researched how omega 6 and omega 3 works within the body to fight disease.
Can inflammation be used to fight cancer? Inflammation is, after all, a healing process and represents the body’s way of healing itself. One proven approach of treating cancer via therapeutic methods involves increasing inflammatory response in the body by way of introducing fever-inducing bacteria that the body must fight.
This approach is called Coley's Toxins and we invite you to read further on this and where it has led today.
We’ve established that acute inflammation is a one-off process where something goes bad in the body which triggers an inflammatory response that tries to heal whatever’s wrong.
Chronic inflammation happens when the response lingers, changing the makeup of the cells present in the inflammatory region. The actual cell membranes and mitochondria become inflamed and lead to illnesses and disease. Fibromyalgia, Crohn’s Disease, diabetes, arthritis, cancer and heart disease and much more are results of chronic inflammation. This is the bad inflammation that we need to heal.
Research shows that it is generally the imbalance of Omega 6 and Omega 3 in the body that leads to chronic inflammation. If we are able to manage this balance through diet and lifestyle choices, we can begin to heal many ailments in our body.
The optimal balance between Omega 6:3 in your body is anywhere between 2:1, 3:1 and 4:1. Omega 6 gets a bad rap as being unhealthy because of common sources of this fatty acid however we do need it to function.
Fast food and processed cooking oils are unhealthy sources of Omega 6 because the processing and high heat cause these oils to go rancid, which is very harmful to health. These oils are used to cook your fast food and are hidden in your ketchup, mayonnaise, salad dressings, dips, and favorite processed foods.
Instead, reach for good sources of Omega 6 such as unprocessed seed oils like cold-pressed coriander seed oil, sunflower oil, flaxseed oil, and black cumin seed oil. (Our favorite oils brand is Andrea's Seed Oil.)
You can also consume these foods in their natural form to get a balanced fatty acid ratio. These would include raw hemp seeds, chia seeds, sprouted sunflower and pumpkin seeds, flax seeds, raw nuts and even avocados, extra virgin olive oil, pastured eggs, meat from grass-fed cows, bison, and lamb.
Fish oil is mainly omega 3, which can still cause an imbalance in the ratio of fatty acids in your body. Supplements are meant to support a healthy lifestyle and are therefore not a priority if your diet is healthy. Making the right diet and lifestyle choices can help you to reduce the amount of supplementation necessary to remain healthy.
It is important to note that when you consume fish oil, it too turns it rancid in your body because of your body’s natural internal temperature. Rancid oil inside your body is a very harmful thing.
Pain has a purpose. It is informing you of a problem within your body. If you’re able to, let your body heal itself when pain arises. If the pain is unbearable, it becomes time to look at the root cause of the inflammation so that you can heal.
Chronic inflammation is not normal. No one should have to live with a lifetime of pain. Managing symptoms is not enough. Aim to balance the ratio of Omega 6:3 in your body naturally to allow it to begin the healing process.
Studies show that up to 132 days of cell dysfunction occur from consuming rancid oils just one time. It will take time to heal the body. Change the oils you’re cooking with and consuming at home.