You train HARD! You put the work in, eat right, get your protein in, and even try to get a good amount of sleep. However instead of feeling rejuvenated, energetic, strong, and vibrant you feel run down, a bit tired, watery looking, and downright achy!
Inflammation: The silent KILLER of Results
Inflammation is a localized physical condition in which part of the body becomes reddened, swollen, hot, and often painful, especially as a reaction to injury or infection. Your body rushes blood to the area to bring healing blood and nutrients to deal with the damage. It’s part of your immune system’s natural response to heal an injury or fight an infection. However, the inflammation that most of us deal with is chronic inflammation. In addition to reducing recovery time, joint pain, loss of muscle, and loss of mobility in our joints chronic inflammation can be an even bigger issue leading to heart disease, dementia, arthritis, diabetes, and a host of other ailments.
Top 5 Causes of Chronic Inflammation
1. Omega 3 fatty acids (anti-inflammatory) out of balance with omega 6.
2. Chronic stress goes 8 or more hours per day which leads to prolonged and elevated levels of the stress hormone cortisol.
3. Chronic smoking & drinking both lead to chronic inflammation.
4. Poor nutrition/micronutrient diets that are high in sugar and low in vitamins, minerals, and electrolytes can lead to chronic inflammation.
5. Lack of sleep & high caffeine intake over time can lead to adrenal fatigue which can cause chronic inflammation.
Closely linked to inflammation, oxidative stress is an even larger concern. Chronic inflammation and oxidative stress are major causes of age-related diseases and cancer. Unlike inflammation oxidative stress is unavoidable. Oxidation happens under several other circumstances including when our cells use glucose to make energy when the immune system is fighting off bacteria. In fact, there are millions of processes taking place in our bodies at any one moment that can result in oxidation. Oxidation increases when we are physically and/or emotionally stressed.
Combatting Oxidative Stress
Some health professionals advocate increasing your antioxidant consumption to combat the body’s free radical production. The key is to have our cells produce their own antioxidants, so you can neutralize free radicals, feel younger, and live healthier. Some natural herbs that do this are turmeric, bacopa, ashwagandha, milk thistle, and green tea.