Moderating inflammation with quick lifestyle fixes

Inflammation is a life-saving response to injury or illness and protects us from the dangers of infection.  None of us enjoy waiting for redness, swelling, or fever to pass.


What if your symptoms never subsided?  Chronic inflammation is unfortunately a way of life for more and more adults in Australia, in fact, the Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy says that around 5% of Australians and New Zealanders are affected by auto-immune diseases, which can lead to chronic inflammation.


While serious inflammatory diseases should be treated by medical professionals, there are a number of simple lifestyle changes that could be useful to us all.


Regular exercise is a key component of managing our own wellbeing.  It boosts our emotional state, protects mental health, assists in weight control, and strengthens our hearts, bones, and muscles.  Not only that, exercise is now known to help in reducing inflammation.


In 2017, researchers at the University of California San Diego School of Medicine discovered that a single 20-minute session of moderate exercise had anti-inflammatory benefits, with the potential for positive effects on chronic inflammatory diseases such as fibromyalgia.  This is the encouragement we all need to get outside for a walk.  Exercising just a few times a week has a huge upside!


Diet is another easy way we can make changes and confront inflammation head-on.  Healthy, balanced eating is a great way to stay in peak health but consider adding anti-inflammatory foods to reduce pain or discomfort over time.  


Foods rich in antioxidants and omega-3’s are vital, and many of them are delicious additions to meals we’re already preparing.  A handful of berries, walnuts or flaxseed is easily added to breakfast; oily fish is a satisfying dinner option; and avocado and dark chocolate for dessert? Yes please!


Spices can also have protective effects on health, so don’t be shy about including a pinch or two of turmeric, black pepper, or ginger to your cooking, breakfast smoothies or desserts.


Elanya van Heerden, Editor-In-Chief at Health Wisdom magazine, says, “Chronic inflammation plays a role in almost every major disease, so it’s encouraging to know that with some relatively easy lifestyle changes, we can reduce our own levels of inflammation.


“Treat your body well – an antioxidant-rich diet, exercise, and avoid vices like alcohol and smoking – and you’ll be rewarded with improved health.”


For more tips on reducing inflammation and taking control of your health – Health WisdomMagazine.


4 April 2019.