Certain foods are well publicized as having anti-inflammatory effects on the body. A lesser known fact is that regular exercise can result in the same relief from inflammation leading to a better quality of life.
You might wonder what exactly is inflammation and if you suffer from it. Inflammation can be the body’s healthy response to germs or injury, sending immune activity to fight infection or heal. But inflammation can be harmful. In the case of autoimmune diseases (diabetes, Crohn’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis), the immune system makes the mistake of attacking the body’s own tissues. There is also Whole Body Inflammation, a chronic condition which is believed to be caused by such factors as stress, environmental toxins, and a sedentary lifestyle.
What You Can Do About Inflammation
Some of your daily choices can counteract inflammation. Regular exercise has been studied to show a reduction of some of the markers that indicate inflammation in the body. One study was done by University College London and the other was done at Louisiana State University. Both studies show that regular exercise will decrease inflammatory markers in the blood, meaning a reduction of inflammation.
Science and body chemistry aside, how do you begin with regular exercise in your daily life? The best solution is to try and find an exercise that you like (or hate the least) that you can do for at least 30 minutes a day. Walking is the perfect exercise for novices. All you need is a good pair of shoes and a place to walk. If you feel self-conscious, get a simple pedometer and walk close to home or even inside your home until you feel more comfortable with the exercise. If you’re comfortable being out and about, swimming is a non-impact exercise that can benefit your whole body.
If you are not new to exercise, other options can involve something competitive to keep you motivated, such as tennis or shooting hoops. Yoga can also be a regular exercise that builds muscle and gets your heart rate up to a good level. Whatever you decide to try to get your body moving daily, make sure you have checked with your doctor and have the okay from him/her to literally move forward.
The studies mentioned above were based on an extended time period of at least 12 weeks. You should plan to make this daily exercise journey last for 3 months to help you gain the benefit of reducing inflammation. Write a quick schedule of the types of exercises you’ll do each day and/or the time of day you’ll do them. Keep yourself accountable to your schedule and know that you will feel better and better each day. The journey to health takes some commitment, but the benefits are worth the trip.