Body pain… caused by inflammation is one of the biggest issues we deal with in America today. Inflammation is the root cause of so many diseases and illnesses and aging. In the last 10 years, much attention has been paid to inflammation and the issues it creates.
Obvious conditions like Asthma, Allergies, Arthritis and auto-immune disease are what we might expect to be the result of chronic inflammation. However, there is a secondary level to this component, Chronic – low level – Inflammation. This silent or systemic inflammation has now been linked with diseases ranging from heart disease, diabetes, and cancer to depression, Alzheimer’s, and osteoporosis. There is also the observation that inflammation appears to be a key factor in skin aging as well as other signs of aging.
The relationship of inflammation to these conditions is yet to be determined. The good news is…
THERE IS HOPE!
Inflammation is a vital part of a health immune system… seems contradictory right? Well, it isn’t. Without the inflammation, our immune system would not function the way it is supposed to. The normal responses of the immune system to defend the body from bacterial and viral invaders and even cancer cells to healing the body from injury is what we would expect to happen. So on a good note… inflammation is not a disease or a bad thing, too much of it on the other hand is the issue.
BALANCE! This is the key word. Diet & Lifestyle are the major contributing factors to the body over producing inflammatory chemicals in our system. Pair this up with the fact that on average we just do not get enough nutrients to naturally reduce inflammation. We have become a society of fast food junkies, with the food industry pretty much destroying the foods that come to market. The push is on for organic food and the funny fact about the cost of these… organic foods were the norm in your grandparent’s day. Today, because of the chemical industry, and the preservatives added to most foods, whether they are pre-packaged or grown in non-organic farms are loaded with chemicals. These are all culprits in creating the additional inflammation in the body. The chemicals are the foreign substances ingested that the immune system does not recognize and sets out to attack thus raising the level of inflammation in the body… kind of a common sense thing if you think about it.
LIFESTYLE! Another factor in whether or not the inflammation is out of control in the body. Regular exercise, maintaining a healthy weight, minimizing stress, not smoking… all will help in reducing inflammation. The biggest factor in contributing to low level inflammation is the food you eat every day!
This is why at Change Your Diet, Change Your Life… I truly believe going organic, as much as possible, primarily beginning with the clean 15… will make an enormous difference in how one feels. It is time to stop the over production of inflammatory chemicals. It is time to add the much needed nutrients BACK into your daily diet. It is also necessary to focus on developing an overall healthy lifestyle beginning with how you feed your body.
Did you know that fat cells produce inflammatory chemicals, AND they are produced at a far greater rate than other cells? By either gaining weight or failing to lose weight, the additional burden of inflammation increases your risk of disease thereby increasing the aging process. The additional factor, which is compounded by this… IT MAKES IT DIFFICULT TO LOSE WEIGHT!!!
NATURALLY TREAT THE EFFECTS OF INFLAMMATION like arthritis pain normally treated with NSAIDS… with TURMERIC! YES… TURMERIC!
Not only is this a golden in color herb, it is like gold for the body. Turmeric is the cousin to ginger, it is commonly used in curry dishes, adding visual appeal to many foods. The scientific name is Curcumin and is used to treat everything from skin ailments to infections and inflammations. Research is beginning to show it also helps to reduce Alzheimer’s. ((1) www.cancer.org (2) www.dailymail.co.uk)
Does it work better than NSAIDS… studies are showing that it does. Phytotherapy Research reported that curcumin, in high bioavailable form has shown it is more effective in reducing tenderness and swelling of the joints in rheumatoid arthritis, and a higher improvement altogether has been reported by patients. Only about 14% reported side effects (articles.mercola.com). The curcumin group reportedly showed the highest percentage of improvement and it is significantly safer. This study “provides the first evidence for the safety and superiority of curcumin treatment in patients with active RA.” (onlinelibrary.wiley.com).
NSAIDs are much more dangerous and damaging to the gastrointestinal, kidney, and cardiovascular systems. It is time to consider using the fresh turmeric root to create delicious dishes, in tonics and teas.
Turmeric Tea: the recipe is simple, and you can experiment with the ingredients and flavorings until you find a combination that suits your taste. Try ginger, cardamom, cinnamon, nutmeg…
- Bring four cups of water to a boil.
- Add one teaspoon of ground turmeric and reduce to a simmer for 10 minutes.
- Strain the tea through a fine sieve into a cup, add honey and/or lemon to taste.
Anti-Inflammatory Golden Milk
While turmeric tea is among Dr. Weil’s favorite beverages (particularly the refreshing iced version), he offers this recipe for Golden Milk Tea as another great way to get the many benefits of turmeric on a daily basis, along with the antioxidant power of ginger and black pepper.
Perfect for an evening drink just before bed, here’s Dr. Weil’s recipe for Golden Milk:
Heat 2 cups light unsweetened coconut milk (or almond or soymilk) with 1 tablespoon peeled, grated fresh ginger and 1 tablespoon peeled, grated fresh turmeric and 3-4 black peppercorns. Bring to a simmer and simmer covered for 10 minutes. Strain and sweeten to taste (if desired).
Simple and delicious – enjoy!
Turmeric Paste – Ideally this should be made with Spring water or Distilled water… NEVER use tap water!
½ c water – ¼ c turmeric – *note – turmeric stains, be careful not to get this on your clothing. Also as it heats, it will boil up and out of the pan, so watch carefully. Add water as it begins to thicken, heat to a medium consistency. Store the mixture in an airtight glass container in the fridge for no longer than 2 weeks.
Use ½ to 1 tsp per serving… add to pan, with 2c of desired milk of choice. You can sweeten with honey, stevia, agave, brown rice syrup, barley malt. Add ¼ tsp. oil – Sesame Oil, Udo’s oil which
The paste can be added to your smoothie in the morning as well.
Udo’s Oil contains the following ingredients: Flax oil*, sunflower oil*, sesame oil*, coconut oil*, evening primrose oil* (13 mg GLA per tbsp.), rice germ and bran oil, soy, lecithin (GMO-free), oat germ and bran oil*, tocotrienols (*certified organic)