How to Reduce Inflammation

Inflammation plays a significant role (as either a cause or effect) in many diseases, including autoimmune diseases, heart disease, arthritis, and cancer. The good news is that lifestyle changes, exercise, diet and natural pain relievers can be powerful tools against inflammation and pain.

Here are 5 tips on how to reduce inflammation:

1. Diet

Luckily, inflammation can be tampered down with just a few easy diet changes. If you are eating foods high in sugar or saturated fat they can spur inflammation by causing over activity in the immune system. While these tasty foods can harm our bodies, some just-as-wonderful foods can help curb inflammation.

Add helpful foods to your plate to help protect your system. Foods that are high in Omega- 3 fats such as tuna, walnuts, flaxseeds, and salmon can soothe your immune system. Some people have found success in taking fish-oil pills daily, so ask your doctor if these may be right for you.

2. Relaxation

Finding peace mentally is very important for the body’s overall health. Yoga is a great practice since it not only helps your body, but it helps to relax the mind and center yourself. Try a few hatha yoga classes each month and get your ‘om on.’

3. Treat yourself

While getting a massage is a pricey treat for yourself—it can be an essential part of staying healthy. Receiving a 45-minute Swedish massage can greatly lower levels of two key inflammation-promoting hormones. Lowering stress hormones will not only prevent inflammation in your body, but may make you and able to manage pain.

Next time you are going for that piece of cake as a reward for a long day, instead opt for a relaxing massage. Your body will thank you for it.

4. Catch more Zzzs

If it is hard to get the recommended eight hours of sleep every night, aim for at least six. Your body is more susceptible to inflammation when tired than those who have a solid night of sleep, according to research presented at the American Heart Association 2010 Scientific Sessions in Chicago.

5. Shed a few pounds

If you are looking to lose excess weight, here is another good reason. Light exercise and eating better both help your overall health and are a great way to lower inflammation. Working out, however, can lower inflammation even if you don’t drop any weight. Exercising at about 60 to 80 percent of your maximum heart rate—brisk walking—lowers levels of inflammation.

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