Silent inflammation is truly dangerous. Understanding what you may be facing is the first step, followed by supporting your body’s ability to fight it. But as the well-known proverb says, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
There was a time when doctors and scientists alike believed that fat was just fat, a tissue that cushioned our body, provided warmth, and helped store energy. But things have evolved since then, and in the last 20 years, more has been discovered about our fat or adipose tissue. Our adipose tissue is actually an incredible endocrine (hormone-releasing) organ, performing integral functions throughout the entire body.
Carrying much of this responsibility is a hormone named adiponectin. Adiponectin is secreted by our adipose tissue, and healthy levels have been reported to be negatively correlated with cardiovascular disease and diabetes. A major way it protects our body from these common chronic diseases is by exerting protective effects against silent inflammation. Also known as a disease of the affluent, silent inflammation interferes with the body’s healthy tissues, and, unfortunately, is an inflammation you can’t feel. Here are three tips to help you determine the amount of silent inflammation you may have and what to do about it.
GET TESTED FOR C-REACTIVE PROTEIN (CRP). CRP is a marker for circulating silent inflammation. It is a simple blood test that will help you understand the degree of silent inflammation you may have in your body and how aggressive you should be to get your inflammation down.
LOSE THOSE EXTRA 5 OR 50+ LB. Being overweight or obese is hazardous to your health in part because the more overweight you are, the less adiponectin your adipose can secrete, putting you at greater risk for silent inflammation. Diets low in refined carbohydrates, the Mediterranean diet, and consuming food higher in omega-3 and lower in omega-6 have been beneficial for weight loss and lowered inflammation in the body. Losing just 5% of body weight has major health implications.
SPICE UP YOUR LIFE. From tree bark to spices, nature has created many options to combat silent inflammation. Extracts, including pycnogenol from pine tree bark and curcumin from turmeric, are wellknown anti-inflammatory and antioxidant nutrients that promote healthy cytokine signalling throughout the body and even in the brain. Early research suggests they can also help improve circulating adiponectin levels, acting as crucial warriors in the battle with silent inflammation.