“Chronic inflammation has been linked to cancers of the lung, esophagus, cervix, and digestive tract, among others.” – health.com
What is inflammation?
You’ve probably heard the term ‘inflammation,’ but do you have a good understanding of what it is?
Inflammation is a vital defense mechanism of the body. Without it, we wouldn’t be able to neutralize things like bacteria, viruses, and toxins.
A response of the immune system, inflammation is the activation and deployment of proteins with “the aim being to remove harmful stimuli, including damaged cells, irritants, or pathogens – and begin the healing process.”
You’ve cut yourself before, right? What did the wound look like shortly after? Most likely, the skin around the cut appeared red and swollen. This illustrates the immune system at work. The red and swollen area is a byproduct of the inflammatory response.
How is chronic inflammation different?
Chronic (long-term) inflammation is not a good thing, however. Monsour Mohamadzadeh, Ph.D., and director of the Center for Inflammation and Mucosal Immunology at the University of Florida explains the difference:
“In a healthy situation, inflammation serves as a good friend to our body. But if immune cells start to overreact, that inflammation can be totally directed against us.”
WE’RE GOING TO DISCUSS SOME CAUSES OF CHRONIC INFLAMMATION, AND STEPS THAT YOU CAN TAKE TO COUNTERACT THEM.
1. BEING OVERWEIGHT OR OBESE
Studies have shown that overweight people have higher concentrations of inflammatory proteins in fat cells. Obese women are especially at risk, and are likelier to have higher levels of the inflammatory protein “AIF-1” than those within a healthy weight range.