10 Dec

It seems like the constant health concern is cancer. Maybe that's just my perspective. But a lot of health articles talk about the cure for cancer. Family or friends often talk about and ask for prayers for someone they are close to who is going through cancer treatment. Cancer is definitely unsettling and not something anyone wants to experience.  But there is a Silent Killer that lurks in so many of our bodies, often leading to cancer, Alzhemers, obesity, diabetes, heart failure, and so many other health concerns. The Silent Killer is inflammation. 

Most of us understand inflammation when it pertains to an injury. You roll an ankle playing basketball or by stepping in a hole. The tissue around the ankle swells the the size of a softball and becomes very warm. This kind of inflammation is helpful, it's our body's way of protecting the injured area, a layer of cushion to protect it while it heals. Ice and elevation are common solutions for this kind of inflammation. Within a few days or a couple of weeks the swelling goes down and the inflammation leaves. 

Many people in America have internal inflammation, something they cannot see just by looking at their body. It comes from any kind of irritant in the world around us such as air pollution, processed foods, tobacco smoke, Aspertame and other artificial sweeteners, and any of the tens of thousands of chemicals we encounter on a daily basis. Our bodies are amazing things and should naturally be able to get rid of these toxins, but with so many of them in our environment it's too much for our bodies to get rid of and instead the toxins settle in. As a protective mechanism our body creates inflammation.  Chronic inflammation leads to chronic dis-ease.

Chronic inflammation is like a fire, consuming everything in it's path. We may experience it as muscle pain, heart burn, indigestion, bloating or swelling, water retention, stiff muscles and joints, chronic diseases, difficulties focusing and remembering, or irritability. Putting out the fire internally is a great way to live a healthy lifestyle that supports the body.

It all starts with food. Remove as much sugar and refined oils from your diet as possible. Eat whole foods as close to their natural source as you can. Eat organic fruits and vegetables and pasture raised meats.  Some great anti-inflammatory foods are:

  • Leafy green vegetables like kale and swiss chard.
  • Onion and garlic
  • Leafy green vegetables like kale and swiss chard.
  •  Brussels sprouts, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower
  • Beans: all types (soaking them for a minimum of 12 hours)
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Spices (ginger, turmeric, cinnamon, cloves)
  • Herbs: parsley, rosemary, thyme, oregano, mint, tarragon, dill
  • Tea (black and green)
  • Red wine
  • Cocoa/chocolate (minimum sugar, maximum chocolate)
  • Flaxseeds and flax oil

Flaxseed and flax oil are high in Omega 6. It isn't difficult to get enough Omega 3 oil, it's pretty common in a lot of food. Without enough Omega 6 to balance it out having too much Omega 3 oil is not beneficial.  Omega 6 oil can be found in flaxseed and flax oil, nuts such as brazil nuts and macadamia nuts, and wild caught cold-water fish such as tuna, cod, and salmon. 

Taking a good magnesium supplement will also help with inflammation. It helps our body to relax and deal with stress. The better we deal with stress the more our body is able to function optimally. 

Turmeric, and ginger or two powerhouses in fighting inflammation. Incorporate these into the food dishes you make or drink them as a tea. Drinking "magic milk" can help to reduce reduced inflammation.

Magic Milk

-Warm 2 cups of your favorite nut milk (I like coconut milk)

-Stir in 1/2 teaspoon ginger powder (or you can use fresh ginger pieces and strain them out before drinking)

Stir in 1 tablespoon turmeric powder

Add 1 tablespoon coconut oil of ghee

I like to add 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon and 1 teaspoon of honey to sweeten

This drink is great to have before bed and you can add a little chamomile or lavender to help you drift off to sleep.

Being mindful of the inflammation our body holds and support it's natural methods to deal with it is a great way to ensure health, stamina, and longevity. 

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