Inflammation … The new trending word and concept in health these days. Everyone knows that too much inflammation is bad, but it’s also the body’s response to something that is insulting the tissues. In that sense, the inflammatory response is actually an attempt to remove a cellular toxin or pathogen.
Knowing this, you can reposition your client’s goal to make it about reducing cellular toxicity, thereby eliminating or reducing the body’s inflammatory response.
It’s important to help clients understand what may be causing inflammation. Stress is a major cause. When we are stressed, our adrenals secrete cortisol. This is natural, but in high amounts over time, cortisol becomes extremely inflammatory in the body.
When it comes to their diet, if someone has food sensitivities and is eating those foods regularly, it can cause inflammation in the digestive system over time. This leads to uncomfortable symptoms like gas, bloating, pain and the inability to properly eliminate and have healthy stool.
Long term, the inflammatory response may even cause damage in the intestines and a leaky gut. When the gut is leaking, undigested foodstuffs and bacteria can leak out into the body and end up in the blood and lymphatic system. This can be a major cause of skin conditions, including acne.
So, it’s extremely important to find out about food sensitivities and completely eliminate them. There are two types of blood testing for this: an IgE and an IgG test. IgE looks at allergies, meaning the person is having an immediate allergic/histamine reaction to the food. The IgG would signify a sensitivity. You can refer clients to get these tests from their doctors.
Consider a Cleanse
One option for resetting the body and reducing the inflammatory response is a full body cleanse. Ideally, a cleanse will include a combination of ingredients that support all of the elimination organs, including the liver, kidneys and digestive tract.
Look for ingredients like bentonite clay and activated charcoal, which will absorb toxins in the digestive tract so that they can be eliminated via the bowels. Dandelion root is great for supporting the liver, and uva ursi has antiseptic and diuretic properties that benefit the kidneys. Meanwhile, burdock root is a blood-cleansing herb, especially beneficial for acne and eczema, and Oregon grape helps remove metabolic waste and has natural antimicrobial properties that are perfect for fighting acne.
A quick note when it comes to cleansing: People always want to cleanse after a big event like a wedding or holiday, because they think that it’s better to party first and cleanse after the fact.
This thinking is backwards; you don’t want to dump more inflammatory elements into an already inflamed system, right? Let these clients know that the most beneficial time to cleanse is actually before a big event. That way, their system is clean and can better handle an altered diet and increased alcohol intake during a special occasion.
Once someone has eliminated foods that are giving them allergic reactions or sensitivities, there are great herbal supplements that they can take to help heal the gut and thereby eliminate the inflammation. First, you want to greatly increase consumption of fruits, vegetables and purified water, as this will repopulate the gut’s proper enzymes and probiotic bacteria.
Next, supplementation will come into play. Here are some of the best ingredients that are beneficial for fighting and healing inflammation:
Aloe vera: A cooling, mucilaginous herb that will “cool down” inflamed tissues and help repair gut lining, while encouraging healthy bowel movements.
Apple pectin: A great soluble fibre that will help heal and move the digestive tract along. It can also be ingested by adding an apple a day to the diet!
Cascara sagrada or psyllium hulls: These are natural laxatives that can keep things moving along while the person works on cleaning up their diet.
Marshmallow root: Moistening, soothing and nutritive to the intestines and the skin, it's also helpful for easing inflammatory bowel disease, especially ones that alternate urgency and constipation.
Other general herbs and supplements that are wonderful for balancing the inflammatory response include turmeric and ginger (which will also aid digestion). These can be easily incorporated fresh into a smoothie or consumed via tea, in addition to getting them in capsules.
A daily dose of antioxidant vitamin C (from a food-based supplement) will help the body fight free radicals. Vitamin C also holds the collagen matrix together, which is why this ingredient is in so many anti-ageing lines. So, getting it internally will do wonders for the body and the skin, fighting signs of aging from within.
Omega fatty acids are responsible for the building blocks of every cell in the body and they’re anti-inflammatory, making them another ideal ingredient for body balance.
When it comes to stress, adaptogenic herbs are the answer for managing the body’s stress response. Clients who often break out when they’re stressed will find these adaptogenic herbs extremely beneficial:
Ashwagandha reduces the effects of stress while promoting energy and vitality.
Schizandra improves blood flow; minimises inflammation; and balances adrenal fatigue, anxiety, chronic fatigue, stress and nervous exhaustion.
Eleuthero rejuvenates adrenal function, especially when withdrawing from caffeine.
In addition to supplements, it is very beneficial to physically reduce stress. This includes activities like yoga, meditation or cardio; anything that gets the heart rate up and burns those stress hormones. The person may need to calm the mind, burn off that extra anxiety or maybe a combination of both.
For more about inflammation-fighting nutrition, research the anti-inflammatory diet, which focuses on removing foods that are known to have higher histamine levels
Clients are always amazed at how great they feel when they’re able to minimise internal inflammation. Helping the body deal with inflammation and find balance will keep them feeling well and happy!
The Vintage Avenue Team x