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Posts tagged ‘chronic inflammation’

Baby, You’re A Firework! The Role of Chronic Inflammation In Premature Aging

Foreign seeds can be caught anywhere, includin...

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One of the common issues associated with aging is chronic inflammation. This manifests as symptoms a lot of people are so familiar with, such as arthritis, allergies, headaches, asthma, weight gain, etc. Inflammation in general, is a natural process that protects us in certain situations. Chronic, unregulated inflammation however, could cause more harm to our selves more than we all know. It is a major factor in all chronic degenerative diseases or the aging process in general.

One of the reasons behind this surge of inflammatory disorders lies in our diet. A deficiency in omega 3 fatty acids due to the process of refining our foods, has led to this epidemic. Studies show that a person needs at least 4,000 mg. of EFAs to prevent symptoms of deficiency. In my practice, I’ve recommended 8,000 and upwards of EFAs for cardiovascular and neurological problems. I always start with dietary recommendations like the avoidance of hydrogenated oils or trans-fats. I recommend primarily a plant-based or anti-inflammatory diet. There are those people who actually do better with animal protein in their diet (small, cold-water fish; organic, free-range poultry; grass-fed beef; wild game; etc.). What this really means is that, we need to consider each person’s biochemical individuality when it comes to making dietary and supplement recommendations (even exercise recommendations, for that matter). Regarding the use of EFA’s, the key words to look for when purchasing them are “molecularly distilled” and “free of PCBs and heavy metals”. It’s best to refrigerate the bottle once it opened. More info on this in future blogs.

Rhythm is the Answer

Overview of biological circadian clock in huma...

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There is a rhythm in life. You see it everywhere in nature. Moon cycles, seasonal changes, circadian rhythms, migratory patterns, growth spurts, planting/harvesting times, etc. There is nothing static in nature. Everything is in a constant flux. The only thing that’s static is death. At least, that’s what we know for now. If there are rhythmic patterns in our bodies, doesn’t it make sense to give hormones (if a person’s symptomatic, deficient or has sub-optimal numbers) in a rhythmic pattern as well? This idea was actually brought forth by a person named TS Wiley. She’s trained as an anthropologist and unfortunately (or fortunately?) is not an MD. Otherwise, a lot of doctors, especially in the anti-aging community would have jumped onto the bandwagon of prescribing bioidentical hormones in a rhythmic manner. That is, changing the dose every so often, to mimic nature. Doctors, just like every one else, are creatures of habit. Nobody wants to mess with the status quo. A German philosopher named Arthur Schopenhauer put it succinctly, “All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.” Anyway, hormonal imbalance is just one of the causes of accelerated, symptomatic aging. Other factors such as nutritional deficiencies, chronic inflammatory processes, toxicities, oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction need to be addressed as well if a person wants to age well.

Is Aging a Disease?

This is the topic at a conference on aging held in London last week called “Turning Back The Clock.” The topic I think is more than a decade too late. The American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine has been advocating anti-aging therapeutics for more than a decade now. I guess it’s better late than never, huh? Anyway, if you read the article further, the experts recommend taking a different approach to this biological process, one that recommends it as a condition that can be manipulated, treated and delayed. It further recommends the search for drugs that treat multiple illnesses at the same time. Sounds good, huh. Honestly though, this approach of just looking for drugs to “treat” aging won’t yield optimal results. We need to look at the basic issues that contribute to aging and address those. Factors such as nutritional deficiencies, oxidative stress, mitochondrial dysfunction, chronic inflammation, toxicity and hormonal imbalances are among the basic things that need to be addressed. Treating the root causes of disease rather than just treating symptoms yield far better results. As far as what armaments to use in the “fight against aging”, we need to look at nutrition, nutraceuticals, natural hormones, gene therapy, homeopathy, detoxification treatments and other modalities along with pharmaceutical agents. A holistic approach to aging is the way to go.

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