- Parent Category: Library of Health
Inflammation – Epidemic of Epidemics by Gloria Gilbère, N.D., D.A.Hom., Ph.D., D.S.C., EcoErgonomist, Wholistic Rejuvenist
Yes, there IS a silent killer on the loose in developed nations, particularly in America, and most of us will fall victim at some point in our lives.
This silent killer is mostly preventable, yet most of us do little to avoid it, and do even less to educate ourselves about its risks. Unfortunately, conventional medicine mostly deals with this epidemic with drugs – medications often more lethal than the condition(s) they’re meant to treat. When wholistic rejuvenation principles are applied, relief and reversal of symptoms deal with inflammation through lifestyle and nutrition-based medicine.
These inflammatory disorders not only compromise our quality of life, they are painful, debilitating, largely mis-diagnosed, over-medicated, and even fatal.
If you doubt in the least that inflammatory disorders has reached epidemic proportions, look closer at the terrifying statistics:
• Cardiovascular disease is the Number-One Killer in the U.S. Americans diagnosed with some form is 80 million (2006), and it killed 1 million in 2005.
• 23.6 million people have diabetes (2007), an increase of 49% from previous ten years. Annually, 1.3 million cases are diagnosed and 200,000 deaths are attributed to it and its complications.
• 50 million Americans are victims of allergies; double from 20 years ago. Hay fever and seasonal allergies in developed countries have increased 100% in each of the last three decades; allergic dermatitis tripled from the 1960s.
• 20 million Americans have asthma, the sixth most common chronic disease.
• 65% of American adults, and 16% of children, are overweight.
• 70 million Americans are victims of arthritis; that’s one in three people – twice as many as two decades ago.
• 15 million people in the U.S. suffer from eczema, the most common skin condition in children under age 11.
• 3 to 6 million people in the U.S. are diagnosed with fibromyalgia, not accounting for those not diagnosed, which is estimated to be closer to 12 million. 90% percent of fibromyalgia cases in the U.S. occur in women.
• Over 1 million Americans are victims of inflammatory bowel diseases.
Inflammation in general makes up the combination of factors that is the underlying cause of almost every illness, because those are the conditions that are causing congestion of the ducts and vessels of circulation and elimination, such as the bile ducts of the liver, the digestive tract, the blood and lymph vessels, the urinary tract, the meridians (Chi ducts) and the hormonal pathways (endocrine system).
Historical Perspective & Human Evolution
After WWII, our society experienced a paradigm shift like no other generation. We shifted from rural areas and backyard vegetable gardens to urban areas where individual gardens are rare, and store-bought, mass-produced food is commonplace. Our grandparents, and those before them, didn’t encounter what is now prevalent – processed and engineered food.
Cell Communication Thwarted
Components in our modern food supply lead to mixed messages to our white blood cells. As stated by Floyd Chilton, Ph.D., “These changes have dramatically turned the volume up on our immune systems causing them to become our enemy. Our bodies are revolting; our white blood cells have overreacted resulting in a plague of inflammatory diseases.”
Too Much of a Good Thing
Our bodies require balance, just as everything in life – they rely on just enough inflammation to fuel natural regeneration of cells and ward off infection and disease. These responses are a basic mechanism of our immune systems. While a healthy body will usually experience periods of inflammation, chronic inflammation is extremely destructive. When the immune system can no longer contain the raging fire of inflammation within the body, it becomes chronically systemic and spurs on other disorders and diseases.
Chronic inflammation upsets the delicate balance of our major body systems: endocrine, central nervous, digestive, cardiovascular, and respiratory. When the body systems are in balance and communicating with each other, all is well. In inflammatory conditions, the cell-to-cell communication becomes over-stimulating and messages get translated incorrectly.
Inflammation Relief through Avoidance of Two Chief Saboteurs
A study was conducted at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Gainesville, Florida to determine if inflammatory conditions, specifically fibromyalgia, were affected in any way by excitotoxins; namely monosodium glutamate (MSG) and Aspartame (artificial sweeteners). The study group were patients diagnosed from two to 17 years and had undergone multiple treatment modalities with very little, if any, success.
After eliminating MSG and aspartame from their diets, all had complete, or nearly complete, resolution of their symptoms within months. Additionally, recurrence of symptoms manifested whenever MSG or aspartame was ingested.
Keep in mind that another huge saboteur are the foods in the nightshade genre, as I’ve written about for more than twenty years. Refer to my book, “Pain & Inflammation Matters" for details of what to avoid and why. Nightshades accelerate an inflammatory condition, so as long as you continue to consume them, it is my experience you will never be completely free of soft and connective tissue pain.
Annals of Pharmacotherapy 2001 Jun;35(6):702-6