Inflammation is the body's response to injury. This is true regardless of whether the injury results from a cut, burn, bruise, infection, or even an autoimmune disease such as rheumatoid arthritis. The inflammatory response includes redness, swelling and an increased local supply of white blood cells. These changes are an attempt to ward off infections and to help repair damaged tissue.
Even after trauma, however, the inflammatory response may be excessive and result in unnecessary pain. In some conditions, as with rheumatoid arthritis, the inflammation serves no useful purpose and is actually a component of the disease rather than part of the healing process.
If tissue health is not restored, or if it continues to cause irritation, inflammation can become chronic.
Less common causes of elevated ferritin levels include the presence of chronic inflammatory disorders, acute hepatitis and Gaucher's disease.
Research published in the Journal of Neuroinflammation in July, 2012 has shown that chronic inflammation can leave the brain vulnerable to developing Alzheimer's.
Research shows that chronic inflammation is a major cause of premature aging: The cumulative damage caused by chronic inflammation often occurs without any apparent signs or symptoms, but gradually causes severe skin deterioration and accelerated skin aging.
Asthma is simply a chronic inflammatory condition of the airways rather than some other part of the body, such as the joints. People with asthma have inflamed, hyperreactive airways that produce excessive bronchial mucus.
The adrenal glands produce hydrocortisol, the major natural anti-inflammatory steroid in the body. Without enough circulating cortisol there may be a tendency to become easily inflamed.
In order to maintain proper balance of the antispasmodic and anti-inflammatory prostaglandins (PGE1 and PGE3) with the pro-spasmodic and pro-inflammatory prostaglandins (PGE2), it is critical to have the proper balance of essential fatty acids. Without adequate amounts of both Omega-3 and Omega-6 oils in the diet, prostaglandin production will be reduced and problems may result.
Curcumin comes from the spice turmeric. The rhizome of this plant has been traditionally used as an antiinflammatory agent in Ayurvedic medicine. Curcumin appears to reduce proinflammatory leukotriene synthesis and also promotes the breakdown of fibrin. In a double-blinded trial, patients receiving 1,200mg of curcumin per day experienced reductions in stiffness and joint swelling comparable to the effects of phenylbutazone, a potent antiinflammatory drug. Curcumin has also reduced inflammation in surgical patients.
Fasting promotes the resolution of inflammatory processes, as seen, for example, in rheumatoid arthritis.
Bromelain's most common application is in the treatment of inflammation and soft tissue injuries. Bromelain's anti-inflammatory activity appears to be due to a variety of physiological actions. It has been shown to speed healing from bruises and hematomas. Treatment with bromelain following blunt injuries to the musculoskeletal system results in a clear reduction in swelling, pain at rest and during movement, and tenderness. Administration of bromelain pre-surgically can reduce the average number of days for complete disappearance of pain and inflammation. [Fortschr Med 1995;113: pp.303-306]
Drugs that reduce inflammation are effective, but even the relatively "safe" ones such as aspirin can cause gastritis or even an ulcer.
Clinical trials have not yet examined the effects of the bioflavonoid quercetin in the treatment of inflammation. However, several inflammation-promoting pathways are known to be inhibited by quercetin.
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