Tamping down inflammation is a must for people with chronic inflammatory diseases like rheumatoid arthritis or lupus. But you can be exposed to damaging inflammation without having a specific medical condition.
What is inflammation?
When your body encounters an offending agent (like viruses, bacteria or toxic chemicals) or suffers an injury, your immune system is activated and sends out its first responders: inflammatory cells and cytokines (substances that stimulate more inflammatory cells).
These cells begin an inflammatory response to trap bacteria and other offending agents or start healing injured tissue.
This can result in pain, swelling, bruising or redness. However, inflammation can also affect body systems in ways you can’t see.
Inflammation prevents the body from adequately reacting to stressors and puts the aging process on an unwanted fast track, increasing the likelihood of problems like heart disease.
The negative effects of inflammation can be so significant that leading researchers from the University of Bologna in Italy coined the phrase inflamm-aging. So making anti-inflammation lifestyle choices is good for everyone.
What are the symptoms of inflammation?
According to the Cleveland Clinic, inflammation can present itself in the following ways:
Acute inflammation may cause: