Inflammation is a complex biological response of our body to harmful stimuli and pathogens that consists of five cardinal signs, i.e., Redness, swelling, heat, pain, and loss of function. Inflammation is the body’s defense mechanism against harmful stimuli. It involves various cells of our immune system, including neutrophils, macrophages, monocytes, lymphocytes, and monocytes.
What are the Causes of Inflammation?
There are various causes of inflammation that include physical, chemical, biological, and environmental causes.
- Physical causes include frostbite, trauma, blunt injury, burns, etc
- Environmental causes include splinters, dirt, debris, and ionizing radiation.
- Chemical causes include toxins, alcohol, toxic gases like carbon monoxide, etc
- Biological causes include pathogens like bacteria, fungi, viruses, parasites, etc., stress, and hypersensitivity reactions.
- Psychological causes include excitement.
How do Toxins Cause Inflammation?
Toxins like carbon monoxide, benzene, halocarbons, ketones, nitrosamines, etc., cause the production of reactive oxygen species in our bodies. These free radicals react with normal body tissues and destroy them, causing chronic inflammatory conditions.
What are the Types of Inflammation
There are two types of inflammation:
- Acute inflammation
- Chronic inflammation
What is Acute Inflammation?
Acute inflammation is a short-term process that is a response to tissue injury. It appears in minutes or hours after injury. It involves neutrophils and lymphocytes.
Mechanism of acute inflammation:
It involves the following steps:
Recognition of microbes or foreign agents:
Cells have certain receptors called Toll-like receptors that recognize foreign agents and microbes. Certain plasma proteins and cytosolic sensors of cell damage are also involved in the recognition of microbes.
When tissue injury occurs, there is increased blood flow and increased vascular permeability. At first, there is transient vasoconstriction followed by vasodilation. Vasodilation causes increased vascular permeability; as a result, there is leakage of fluid out of vessels, which causes hemoconcentration that leads to the slowing of blood flow. Slowing of blood flow causes the arrangement of WBCS along vessel walls or Margination.
The cells adhere to the endothelium, detach and adhere; this process is Rolling.
Cells attach to the endothelium permanently; it involves LFA, ECAM, PCAM.
The next step is the recruitment of leukocytes and neutrophils towards the inflammation site; it occurs by chemotaxis. In chemotaxis, certain chemicals attract neutrophils towards the site of inflammation. These include products of phagocytosis, chemokines, and components of complement like C5a.
Once neutrophils reach the damaged area, they begin phagocytosis. At first, there is the formation of the phagosome. Later, the phagosome is destroyed by reactive oxygen species (ROS).
Outcomes of acute inflammation:
- Complete resolution
- Fibrosis and scar formation
- Chronic inflammation
- Abscess formation
Mediators of acute inflammation:
- For vasodilation: Histamine, Leukotrienes (LTC4, LTD4), Bradykinin, Prostaglandins (PGI2, PGE2, PGD2, PGF2) Complement (C3a, C5a),
- For chemotaxis: Interleukins (IL-8), PAF, Complement (C5a), Histamine
- For phagocytosis: C3b
- Interleukins (IL-1, IL-6), TNF-α,
- Prostaglandins (PGE2), Bradykinin, Histamine
Chronic inflammation is a long-term response to tissue damage or inflammatory stimuli. It is characterized by macrophages and lymphocytes. It occurs when:
- The agents causing inflammation like mycobacterium tuberculosis, bacteria, fungi, viruses, etc., are not removed from the body. The inflammation, as well as the attempts at tissue repair, coexist.
- Acute inflammation leads to chronic inflammation when the damaging stimulus is not removed.
- Autoimmune disorders like rheumatoid arthritis in which body tissues are recognized as foreign agents and immune responses are produced.
- Oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction
- Continuous exposure to low levels of chemical irritants or toxins
Mechanism of chronic inflammation:
Progression of acute inflammation to chronic inflammation results in the production of macrophages and lymphocytes. They are activated by chemokines and cytokines, and they also release cytokines and other mediators of inflammation. Phagocytosis occurs as a result, of macrophages.
Role of Macrophages in Chronic Inflammation
Macrophages are recognized as the central player of inflammation. They are derived from monocytes in the circulating blood. Activation of macrophages causes an increase in protein synthesis, size, and phagocytic activity of lysosomes. They also produce certain mediators of inflammation like interferon-alpha and -beta, interleukin-1, -6 and -8, TNF-alpha, etc. M1 macrophages are involved in all this and cause phagocytosis.
M2 macrophages produce interleukin 10. They cause remodeling, angiogenesis, and scavenging and are also involved in the repair process.
Diseases Involving Chronic Inflammation:
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Cardiovascular disorders
- Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
- Crohn’s disease
Mediators of Chronic Inflammation
Mediators of chronic inflammation are leukotrienes, prostaglandins, kinins, interleukins, and platelet-activating factors.
Patterns of inflammation
There are the following patterns of inflammation:
- Serous inflammation that involves watery, protein neutrophils-rich effusion. For example, in blisters.
- Fibrinous inflammation in which a large amount of fibrin deposition occurs.
- Abscess formation is when a localized collection of fluid occurs inside the tissue.
- Suppurative inflammation in which suppuration occurs in deeper body tissues.
- Ulceration is when mucosa of the mouth, stomach, or endothelium is digested and shed off.
Granulomatous inflammation is a histologic pattern of tissue reaction that appears following cell injury. Granulomatous inflammation is caused by a variety of conditions including infection, autoimmune, toxic, allergic, drug, and neoplastic conditions.
Diseases involving granulomatous inflammation include:
- Crohn’s disease
- Cat scratch disease
- Rheumatic fever
What Foods Cause Inflammation?
Inflammation is part of your body’s natural defense against things that adversely affect health, like bacteria, viruses and toxins. But your immune system is complicated, and its components are sometimes triggered by unexpected things — including certain foods. The five types of foods that cause inflammation include:
- Red meat and processed meats, including bacon, hot dogs, lunch meats and cured meats
- Refined grains, including white bread, white rice, pasta and breakfast cereals
- Snack foods, including chips, cookies, crackers and pastries
- Sodas and other sweetened drinks
- Fried foods
Your body is programmed to metabolize and use the nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that vegetables, fruits and whole grains provide. It requires these things, in fact, because they help coordinate essential functions necessary for existence.
The refined forms of sugars, fats, and grains that are packed into processed foods are a different story. They’re not needed. Plus, your body doesn’t always know what to do with them — especially when they’re consumed in large amounts.
Best Foods To Reduce Inflammation
An anti-inflammatory diet is a dietary pattern that is thought to aid in reducing the risk of disease that’s associated with chronic inflammation. The typical anti-inflammatory diet emphasizes fruits, vegetables, lean protein, nuts, seeds, and healthy fats.
Here are six popular anti-inflammatory foods you should add to your diet:
Raspberries, blackberries, strawberries, and blueberries are packed with fiber, vitamins and minerals and rich in antioxidants. Berries contain antioxidants called anthocyanins, which are phytonutrients with anti-inflammatory effects that may reduce your risk of inflammatory diseases. Goji berries, an orange-red fruit native to China are very high in antioxidants and increasingly popular for their anti-inflammatory properties.
Papaya contains papain, a protein-digesting enzyme. Vitamins E, C, and papain found in papaya reduce inflammation and improve digestion. Papaya is also high in fiber and water content which supports a healthy digestive tract and elimination.
Pineapple contains bromelain, an enzyme that aids in the soothing of indigestion, healing of trauma and reduction of swelling and inflammation in many conditions or injuries. Bromelain also decreases the inflammation associated with joint pain, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), and arthritis. Bromelain is used in many OTC natural-based anti-inflammatory supplements for arthritis.
The Omega-3 fatty acids found in fish can help block the formation of antibodies and proteins that cause inflammation in your body. Patients with rheumatoid arthritis who eat fatty fish two or more times a week experience significantly fewer arthritis symptoms than people who never eat fish. Eat a 3-6 ounce serving of fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, or sardines two to three times a week to reduce arthritis inflammation.
5. Olive Oil
Olive oil is rich in phenols and similar phenolic compounds. One of the phenols found in olive oil, oleocanthal has similar analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties to ibuprofen. This may be one of the reasons behind the Mediterranean diet’s positive impact on heart health and blood pressure. Choose virgin or extra-virgin olive oil to ensure your olive oil has the maximum amount of these beneficial compounds.
Several of the best anti-inflammatory foods you can eat are in your spice cabinet. The healthy polyphenol compounds found in many herbs and spices can disrupt your body’s inflammatory process. Tumeric and the curcumin found in turmeric block inflammation as do ginger, cinnamon, clove, black pepper, and garlic.
Where Can You Learn More?
After one year in development, the NEW Spencer Institute Holistic Nutrition Coach Certification is LIVE. And, you will also get a VERY comprehensive online and offline coaching business system as our gift to you.
If you are a health and fitness pro, the knowledge you’ll gain in this course is the missing key to helping your clients reduce that fatigue, lack of recovery, or inflammation your clients want solved.
If you currently offer nutrition coaching/consulting, you will want to add these skills and this credential to your resume.
If you focus your work in the “holistic” areas of health, fitness, and wellness, THIS is your next step. Without this knowledge and certification, you won’t have everything you need to help all your clients.
If you are looking for CEUs, we got you covered. Completion of this course also gives you 4.0 CEUs.
You will want to click over now to learn what the buzz is all about. This is unlike any other nutrition certification offered in the industry.