Are you ... inflamed?

Inflammation Causes & Detection

Are you ... inflamed?
Are you ... inflamed?

In my opinion low carb primal is THE best way for all humans to eat. There are many variations within the “primal meal plan”… you don’t have to eat just as I do, especially if you are NON-diabetics.

Living according to “The Primal Blueprint” is the best way to live in my opinion because it reduces inflammation. It has helped me and many many others improve not only their blood sugar control but it has also improved their cholesterol and blood pressure numbers.

Reducing inflammation is THE key to improving our overall health and improving not only your longevity but also the quality of life.

How do we reduce Inflammation?

Meal plan is the primary method for me but by no means the sole method of reducing inflammation. There are other ways including exercising, playing, getting enough sleep, reducing stress and avoiding toxins as much as possible.

How do we know if we are successful in reducing Inflammation?

  • Tests
    • C-reactive protein (CRP) – this test measures the amount of CRP in the blood. As inflammation increases, so does the amount of this protein in the bloodstream.
    • high-sensitivity CRP (hs-CRP) – tests for the same protein but provides a higher level of testing.
    • Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate – this test measures the “fall rate” of red blood cells. When inflammation is present, red blood cells tend to clump together, causing them to fall at a higher rate.
  • Blood Sugar Level – this will need some explaining.  I recommend the tests above to KNOW your level of inflammation. However, being diabetic I can determine when certain events cause me inflammation because my blood glucose level will rise. This is due to more blood glucose (sugar) being added to the blood stream than can be “moved” out by insulin. This is caused by either high levels of glucose being added to the blood stream, not enough insulin being secreted by the pancreas or insulin resistance (or a combination of all three). So many factors can cause blood sugar levels to increase, nailing down exactly what causes fluctuations is difficult at best.  However, I do know that many inflammatory “events” do cause a blood sugar level increase for me. They are….
    • Excessive Carbohydrate Consumption is inflammatory. Your body must “process” the sugar so it goes through a series of steps to get rid of the excess sugar from your bloodstream. For diabetics, excessive carbohydrate consumption means taking drugs and or insulin (or suffer cell / organ damage). Mark Sisson’s posts here and here describes it much better than I can. :)
    • Lack of Sleep is inflammatory and studies show just one sleep deprived night can cause insulin resistance. I have experienced this myself although it typically takes more than one or two nights.
    • Stress – I don’t know of a study that shows stress causing an increase in glucose or insulin resistance… but I know it caused my blood sugar to spike last spring.  Originally, I thought it was too much protein in my diet but I’ve since ruled that out.  (Excess protein can cause a glucose response.)
    • Sickness/Illness/Infection – all of these can cause blood sugar to rise…. all are inflammatory, obviously.

9 thoughts on “Inflammation Causes & Detection”

  1. Sandra_Abernathy

    Steve, you are right on!! I had such an inflamation problem and an immune problem that went along with that before I started eating low carb and following the Primal Blueprint way of eating!! What I love about eating low carb or NO CARBS is that a person looses weight, yet eats and gets filled up. You have more energy. You it’s just the only way any Diabetic should eat!! Anytime I see grains, even, something inside me screams “Danger”! Not because there is anything wrong with grains by themselves, but because most diabetics do not process foods like a non diabetic anyhow. And as we know from research and experience, grains and certain foods quickly turn to sugars and starches and cause and create inflamation in our blood vessels, in our stomachs and bowels. It’s just not good for us. The ADA needs to stop and to start listening to all of us Diabetics who’ve been at this for awhile!! Anyhow, I’m so glad you keep on spreading the knowledge!! You know what you are talking about!! I hope everyone listens!!

  2. Michelle Trevino

    Very useful list! I often forget about sleep and stress, but my body sure doesn’t. For nondiabetics, I guess they can check if they have any one or more of the many inflammatory problems or diseases like arthritis, IBS, heart disease, MS, allergies, cancer, etc. The list is huge! Like you said, just follow a low carb meal plan and it will help. Besides, what do people have to lose by eating natural, whole, unprocessed foods?

  3. First time I was told my inflammation levels were elevated I was in my early 20s. They were so high that one doc was convinced I had RA or lupus. Fast forward 30 years and I start eating low carb….the levels drop but are still elevated. About 2 years ago I started dropping processed foods and increase my saturated fat intake….and now my levels are ALL within normal limits. I don’t have lupus, but do have RA….needless to say, my doc is dumbfounded!! He’s pro-low carb, but cannot believe it’s just diet that has made the changes!

  4. Here is something else that makes intermiitent fasting a good partner with low carb dieting. IF is anti-inflammatory as brought out in Dr. Eades blog. When I began doing intermittent fasting, I had some reseidual knee pain.I used to have a lot of knee and jpint pain which improved greatly on Atkins. I also continued experiencing auras although they had not flared up into full blown migraines after I began doing low carb. After beginning intermittent fasting, my resisdual knee pain vanished as did the auras. So I know that my inflammation also cooled when I added intermittent fasting to my regimen.

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