Secret Source of Inflammation

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Did you know that your reaction to life, circumstances, events, people, family, work and more can impact your health?  It is a secret source of inflammation.  There are actually a variety of tests to measure it.  However, it is not a simple fix even when the lab results come in.  The answer is not to just take a pill and it is gone.  When you do the work to identify it and properly deal with it, the health benefits are palpable and worth your while to put in the work to reverse it.

So what could this secret source of inflammation be?  It is your stress response.  If you cope poorly with stress, your health will likely be negatively affected.  There is acute stress and chronic stress.  Stress is unavoidable, but remember – it is your reaction to stressors that matters most.  Learning how to recover from acute stress so that it does not turn into a chronic state of being is key.  It is beneficial to one’s mental and physical health to deal with acute stress as it comes.  I help many of my patients with this and talk therapy is one of my favorite ways to understand each of my patients.  One factor that is prevalent is how much stress people keep to themselves.  Once they release it by talking about it, oftentimes the perspective can shift.  Perspective is crucial in understanding the stressor as well as identifying how it’s negatively affecting you so that something productive can be done to deal with it.

If acute stress is not addressed and dealt with then it can develop into chronic stress. Some signs include physical body aches/pain, hypertension, insomnia, mood disorders, anxiety, fatigue, isolation, change in appetite, extreme weight changes, addictive behaviors: drug, alcohol, etc. Physical ailments can contribute to more stress, leaving people feeling hopeless and stuck in a detrimental cycle.

There are labs that I use to measure how stress is affecting people.  Watching these markers improve over time are encouraging to my patients.  Some values include:  cortisol, prolactin, and inflammatory markers.  Another factor is that any deficiency or excess in nutrients or abnormal values can also be stressful on the body.  These include B vitamins, magnesium, full thyroid panel, Hemoglobin A1C, iron/ferritin and toxic exposures.  Hormones are also largely affected by stress.

There’s good news though – you can choose healthy ways of dealing with stress.

Decreasing stress naturally is essential to not letting stress get the best of you.  Some of my favorite recommendations are a variety of breathing techniques, grounding exercises, proper use of essential oils, adequate diet including good forms of macronutrients: fats, carbohydrates and proteins.  Oftentimes people are depriving themselves of whole foods or overeating the bad stuff which only puts the body at risk of feeling stressed.  Exercise based on blood type is wonderful since each blood type releases cortisol, the stress hormone, differently.

Let’s face it – as humans, we all have stress.  The way we deal with stress can make or break ourselves.  If you or a loved one is dealing with acute or chronic stress let them know about the natural ways that can bring their body back to balance!