There's no doubt that people with certain health conditions should take anti-inflammatory supplements. These products ease pain, reduce disease flare-ups, and generally improve your symptoms.
Anti-inflammatory supplements also help prevent chronic health conditions. That means you may benefit from taking supplements even if you currently feel healthy and well.
But there's more to taking anti-inflammatory supplements than grabbing a random product off the shelf and hoping it works.
There are things you should know before you take a daily supplement. For example, it’s important to know the supplement's quality and whether it causes side effects or interacts with medications you take.
The best way to decide if you need an anti-inflammatory supplement is by consulting Behnam Khaleghi, MD, here at Pacific Rheumatology Medical Center. As an expert in inflammatory diseases and anti-inflammatory supplements, he can guide your decision and make sure the supplements you choose are the best for your unique health needs.
Causes of ongoing inflammation
Inflammation is a natural immune response that's essential for fighting illnesses and healing diseases. In this role, inflammation has a time limit. It does the job and then goes away.
But sometimes the inflammation doesn't go away. There are many reasons why this can happen. You might have an ongoing low-grade infection, you may be exposed to toxins (like mold, chemicals, or cigarette smoke), or you could have an autoimmune condition.
In some cases, cellular and biochemical processes in your body fail to work properly. As a result, they cause oxidative stress and inflammation, or they may fail to halt the ongoing inflammation.
Dangers of bodywide inflammation
When inflammation sticks around too long, it damages healthy cells and tissues. Then scarring develops that prevents organs from working properly. Eventually, the cellular damage reaches your DNA and causes cellular death.
The physical changes caused by inflammation lead to serious health conditions such as:
- Heart disease
- Type 2 diabetes
- Certain cancers
- Chronic kidney disease
The chronic inflammatory diseases in this list represent the top causes of death.
Benefits of anti-inflammatory supplements
The first step toward preventing and treating chronic inflammation is to change unhealthy lifestyle habits. The foods you eat can either reduce bodywide inflammation or contribute to it. Losing weight also makes a significant difference.
Weight and inflammation share an upward spiraling cycle. Inflammation promotes weight gain, while excessive fat triggers a state of chronic inflammation.
Anti-inflammatory supplements are one of the best weapons in your fight against damaging inflammation. Here are just a few examples of anti-inflammatory ingredients available in supplements:
Curcumin, an active ingredient in turmeric, is one of the most potent anti-inflammatory supplements. It significantly reduces inflammation associated with most chronic health conditions and may even be effective in diminishing inflammation caused by cancer.
However, your body can't absorb curcumin unless it's combined with piperine, a component of black pepper.
Omega-3 fatty acids
Fish oil is a rich source of two types of fatty acids: eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). These fatty acids directly affect the function of cells and actively block inflammation-causing substances.
Cannabidiol (CBD) oil comes from hemp plants. CBD activates your body's natural endocannabinoid system, which produces cannabinoids similar to the substances that come from hemp.
Your body's cannabinoids regulate many activities in your body, including anxiety, sleep, and mood. Cannabinoids also significantly reduce inflammation. CBD oil triggers the same system, making it a powerful anti-inflammatory agent.
If you have a chronic inflammatory disease, it's important to consult with us before you take anti-inflammatory supplements. We can recommend the best type of supplement for your specific condition, and we can tell you the optimal dose for producing therapeutic results.
To learn more about anti-inflammatory supplements and how they can help you, call Pacific Rheumatology Center or book an appointment online today. We have offices in Tustin and Laguna Hills, California.