Recovering The SelfA Journal of Hope and Healing

Health

5 Ways to Manage Inflammation Naturally

by Jeff Richards

If you experience chronic inflammation due to something like arthritis, or you’re experiencing acute inflammation due to injury, there are many reasons we may not want to turn to over-the-counter, prescription or more invasive treatment options. Here are 5 scientifically proven ways to manage inflammation naturally.

manage Inflammation

1. Get Some Sleep

You’ll see “get eight hours of sleep” in just about every health and wellness article you read, but that’s for good reason! Sleep is super important to many aspects of our health, but studies have shown that sleep deprivation, even losing a few hours a night, can increase pro-inflammatory processes in our bodies (1). If you have an autoimmune disease or other health condition that causes you to experience more inflammation in the body, making sure you maintain a healthy sleep schedule can be an important piece of the puzzle when it comes to managing your inflammation. 

2. Laser Therapy

Low Level Laser Therapy (photobiomodulation) such as the K-Laser services offered at Korsh Spinal Health and Wellness have well-studied benefits for treating many musculoskeletal conditions including swelling and inflammation(2). The best part? Laser therapy is non-invasive and entirely pain-free. Laser therapy helps treat inflammation by creating a physiological reaction that increases circulation and promotes healing in the area. The next time you visit your chiropractor or physiotherapist consider asking them if they offer Laser Therapy! 

3. Load Your Plate With Anti-Inflammatory Foods

One of the biggest things you can change that will naturally help manage inflammation is incorporating more anti-inflammatory foods into your diet such as leafy greens, nuts and fatty fish, and limiting foods that actively promote inflammation such as refined carbs, sugar, and red meat(3). While there may be other factors that contribute to a food being anti-inflammatory, foods high in antioxidants and polyphenols tend to be good choices when looking to manage inflammation. If you experience chronic inflammation consider speaking to your doctor or dietitian about an anti-inflammatory diet such as the Mediterranean diet. 

4. Acupuncture

The benefits of acupuncture for a wide range of symptoms and conditions, including inflammation have long been studied and proven but only fairly recently has acupuncture become a more “mainstream” staple to complementary healthcare. Acupuncture has been shown to trigger anti-inflammatory responses, making it a powerful management tool for chronic and acute inflammation(4)

If you’re using acupuncture alongside physiotherapy or massage consider visiting a multidisciplinary clinic like Total Health and Sports Performance helps to make management feel like less of a chore, and you have a whole team of healthcare practitioners working with you to achieve your health goals! 

5. Manage Stress

Just like sleep, this is a big one you’ll hear just about everywhere – manage your stress levels! In particular, nip that stress in the bud early and avoid prolonged periods of stress. Prolonged stress has been shown to impact levels of cortisol in the body in such a way that it begins to impact how we regulate inflammation which can lead to tissue breakdown and negative effects on our immune system(5).

The good news is there are many things you can do to manage stress; yoga has been shown to help manage stress and improve mood(6), talk therapy, meditation and breathing exercises, go for a walk in nature, or get a massage! Ultimately, the most important part about managing stress is becoming mindful of it and how it can impact your health.

If you’re looking to try more conservative and natural ways of managing your inflammation before resorting to medication, or you want to incorporate complementary therapies into your existing routine there are all kinds of natural ways to help with inflammation.

Citations

  1. Elsevier. (2008, September 4). Loss Of Sleep, Even For A Single Night, Increases Inflammation In The Body. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 12, 2020 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080902075211.htm
  2. Cotler, H. B., Chow, R. T., Hamblin, M. R., & Carroll, J. (2015). The Use of Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) For Musculoskeletal Pain. MOJ orthopedics & rheumatology, 2(5), 00068. https://doi.org/10.15406/mojor.2015.02.00068
  3. Publishing, H. (2014, June). Foods That Fight Inflammation [Web log post]. Retrieved December 14, 2020, from https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/foods-that-fight-inflammation
  4. Publishing, H. (2014, June). Foods That Fight Inflammation [Web log post]. Retrieved December 14, 2020, from https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/foods-that-fight-inflammation
  5. Stress, Inflammation, Immunity. RN.com. https://www.rn.com/featured-stories/stress-inflammation-immunity/
  6. Yoga for health. National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. https://nccih.nih.gov/health/yoga. Accessed Oct. 6, 2015.

About the Author

Toronto native Jeff has always had a love for writing. He first found this love in high school when he wrote articles for his fellow peers in the school newspaper. Since then, Jeff has successfully published two books, the first of which was published shortly after receiving his master’s degree in literature. With plans to write another book, Jeff’s passion for storytelling still continues

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