What You Don't Know About Inflammation
You've probably heard the latest science by now, that rampant inflammation and oxidation are the reason why we have disease and chronic symptoms.
So it makes sense that reducing inflammation by determining its underlying cause helps people to reverse their symptoms, often quite dramatically. This is the basic principle of functional root-cause medicine.
And it really does work.
But here's something deeper that not everyone in the Functional Medicine world is talking about: Anti-oxidants, and how they play a critical role in reducing inflammation.
Since knowledge is power to overcome your illness, I want to teach this to you in a way that we all can grasp.
So let's get down to the basics.
Our bodies were created to maintain a beautiful balance between oxidants and anti-oxidants.
In our very simplified version, oxidants cause damage. They are produced when there's any kind of "insult" to the body, whether this be a virus, an injury, chronic stress, or any kind of "toxin". Oxidants are even produced during normal metabolism and cellular functioning. So they can destroy invading pathogens, which is a good thing. But if there are too many of them, and they aren't cleaned up, they hang out and cause tissue damage and disease.
Our bodies have an answer: Anti-oxidants. Anti-oxidants clean up the oxidants so they can't cause trouble to our own tissue.
Rampant inflammation is an imbalance between oxidants and anti-oxidants.
Rampant inflammation = tissue damage and disease.
This part of our biochemistry is very simple and elegant.
So, if you have an autoimmune disease or chronic symptoms of any kind, you have an imbalance between oxidants and anti-oxidants. This is where the disease process starts, so to reverse disease, we must go to this fundamental root of the problem.
So, WHY do you have too many oxidants, and not enough anti-oxidants to clean them up?
First, we don't eat enough anti-oxidants. Our bodies are designed to eat about 8-10 cups of vegetables and fruits, healthy oils and quality protein each and every day. These foods are loaded with all the nutrients we need to supply enough anti-oxidants under normal circumstances.
Second, our bodies are continually being bombarded with toxins that create oxidants.
So, think about this. We eat countless toxins in our processed foods. We eat GMO and non-organic foods sprayed with glyphosate (Roundup) and other dangerous neurochemicals that directly destroy our cells. We breathe toxins in our air. Our houses off-gas toxins. Our clothing and furniture is made with toxins. We overwork ourselves and think negatively, which create oxidants in our brains. And I could go on and on.
Eeek! Is it any wonder why we are all so overloaded with oxidants? This is what we call "Oxidative Stress".
But before you freak, there's a simple answer that you can start doing today.
Start practicing an "In with the good, out with the bad" lifestyle.
You're doing the most important thing right now: You're learning that you must balance your oxidant to anti-oxidant ratio to get better, and prevent ongoing damage and disease.
To practice "In with the good", we put in the nutrients -- the basic building blocks -- our bodies need to function optimally. Clean water and organic food consisting of 8-10 cups of veggies, proteins and fats. Every single day. Until we are better, most of us need to supplement with higher doses of anti-oxidants like liposomal vitamin C, Glutathione, ALA, Astathanthin, and others. It's important to test and work with a functional medicine specialist to determine exactly what your personal body is lacking, and what needs to be supplemented. Otherwise, you could create other imbalances that could be harmful, and be throwing money in supplements down the drain.
To practice "Out with the bad", you must stop putting the toxins in. We don't like admitting this, but we all know that it's true. What we eat is the single largest factor in how toxins get into our bodies. That means, we have a huge measure of control over this toxin battle. We have to stop eating foods that cause our oxidation and tissue damage. This means sugar, processed foods and preservatives, fast food, and inflammatory foods such as gluten, dairy, corn, soy, and even white potatoes.
Now of course, there's much more to reversing autoimmune and chronic illness than this. For instance, we need to correct our gut microbiome health and leaky gut and learn how to detox safely and effectively so we can remove excess toxins. We need to find the other sources of oxidation and inflammation, such as pathogens and invisible infections and genetic imbalances.
Working with a practitioner who is trained in functional medicine is the answer to solving chronic illness problems.
However, if you don't get the fundamental nutrition part down, you simply will continue to progress in your illness. And that's scary, but it's really the truth.
In fact, more and more functional and integrative doctors have decided that they will not even see a new patient until they've worked with their nutritionist and taken care of these basic nutritional fundamentals. Because they know now that without these basics in place, the more advanced protocols won't give them the desired results: True Reversal. This creates patients who run from doctor to doctor, looking for "new" answers, never to find them.
The truth is, we have the answer already. We just need to "do".
I remember the day when I finally broke down and realized that I had to make some major changes in my eating habits. I literally became angry and depressed for a few days over the fact that my genetics could not tolerate gluten and dairy... my ultimate comfort foods. I remember clearly pounding my fist on the kitchen counter, and screaming, "It's not fair!" because I couldn't eat my favorite foods without being ill.
But I had to make a choice:
1) Eat the damaging foods and continue in my disabled, painful existence
2) Eat the foods which help me to heal, and change my life in ways I never imagined.
I stumbled a few times, but I finally chose door number 2. Now, being on the other side of health and wholeness, I would never dream of eating those so-called "comfort" foods again. Because this amazing new vibrant life that I am living now means far more to me and my family, than food ever could.
And that's why I spend my life helping others now, and I believe that my suffering is serving a more important purpose in the world.
I've created True Wellness Today and our Facebook Group
Heal Autoimmune Disease Now to teach and empower you to live the life you were created to live. Come and learn, and get your life back!
Love and Ultimate Health,
Dorinda A. Smith, MS
Autoimmune Research Scientist
You may contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or 760-315-1021.