Inflammation is the body's protective response in a variety of situations. The body uses white blood cells for protection against germs and foreign organisms. White blood cells comprise about 1 percent of the blood system, but they are the main force that protects the body from disease. After an injury, white blood cells move to the injury site to eliminate germs and clear away dead cells. Gradually, the cells work in this area to help the body heal. Sometimes, however, white blood cells become overactive and a person may develop symptoms that suggest an exaggerated response.
When the body's immune system is overactive, white blood cells actually attack healthy tissues in the body. Rheumatoid arthritis and systemic lupus are two examples of autoimmune diseases that involve overactive white blood cells damaging tissues. When this happens, people experience inflammation. With rheumatoid arthritis, the inflammation often occurs at the joints and causes swelling and pain. Over time, the excessive inflammation actually damages the joints permanently. With lupus, the white blood cells attack joints, nerves, and organs such as the lungs and the kidneys, causing damage.
Other Risks of Chronic Inflammation
People who experience chronic inflammation may be at risk for other health issues as well. Heart disease and some cancers are common problems in people who have chronic inflammation. Alzheimer's disease is also connected with chronic inflammation. And systems of the body can be overloaded by excess fluid that builds up due to inflammation, which causes stress on the body and requires it to work harder than it should.
What Is an Anti-Inflammatory Diet?
Someone struggling with symptoms of an overactive immune system or chronic inflammation may find relief from symptoms by following an anti-inflammatory diet. What is an anti-inflammatory diet? This type of diet is not like other popular diets or regimented eating plans for weight loss. Instead, following an anti-inflammatory diet involves eating foods that are known to be healthful with high amounts of fiber, vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, and phytonutrients. In general, following this type of diet involves choosing the most healthful and nutrient-rich foods possible and avoiding empty calories.
Benefits of Anti-Inflammatory Diet Plans
Someone exploring anti-inflammatory nutrition usually wants to improve their health and reduce unpleasant inflammation symptoms such as stiffness and pain. A physician often cautions that anti-inflammatory nutrition is not a magic cure, but choosing a more healthful diet tends to be an approach for inflammation problems. By avoiding foods that cause inflammation, swelling and excess fluid levels often decrease.
Alternative Therapies for Pain
At Kinetic Sports Medicine, led by Dr. Richard Kim, the team specializes in non-operative treatments to help reduce pain, including common strategies like dietary changes and rehab exercises as well as innovative therapies like stem cell injections and platelet-rich plasma injections. These treatments have shown encouraging results for people with sports injuries or who experience chronic pain. Both procedures are non-surgical and minimally invasive. Contact us to make an appointment to learn more about our services.