When you think of an infection you might think of a wound that is red and swollen or warm to the touch. But (chronic) inflammations can be invisible and seemingly unnoticed in your body. With all its consequences. Lowering your inflammation levels will do your health a lot of good, both in the short and long term. We will give you nine tips on how to keep the inflammation levels in your blood low.
Dangers of elevated inflammation values
Elevated inflammation levels are linked to many nasty conditions, either as a cause or a consequence. Type 2 diabetes, autoimmune diseases, heart disease, cancer and even Alzheimer's and dementia. They also lower your resistance, making you more likely to catch the flu and less likely to recover. By lowering these inflammation values, you can prevent many problems. Fortunately, you can do much in terms of diet, exercise and lifestyle. Here are the top nine tips:
Tip 1: Avoid stress
When you are constantly under stress, your body goes into fighting mode. This makes the body less sensitive to the regulatory effect of cortisol on inflammatory reactions. As a result inflammations can get out of hand. So take it easy, book a massage for yourself or take a walk in the woods.
Tip 2: Exercise ...but not too much
Regular and moderate exercise lowers your inflammation levels in your blood by 20-60%. But beware: excessive and irregular exercise has the opposite effect. So only in the weekend go crazy in the gym is not wise. A bit of walking, cycling or swimming every day is.
Tip 3: Avoid unhealthy foods
Trans fats and excess omega 6 fatty acids are big culprits when it comes to inflammation. It's found in fast food, cookies, chips and many margarines. Rather choose fish, white meat, nuts and plant-based proteins.
Tip 4: An extra scoop of leafy vegetables
Green (leafy) vegetables are full of magnesium, as are whole grain cereals and nuts. A mineral that most people don't get enough of. Several studies show that magnesium helps lower inflammation levels.
Tip 5: Get enough sleep
Sleep at least a good six hours a night. Those who sleep less run the risk of increased inflammation levels in the blood. So put away that tablet or phone in time, have a cup of warm milk and sleep well!
Tip 6: Roll out your yoga mat
Yoga is good for the body and mind. According to research, twice a week for 75-90 minutes of Hatha yoga significantly lowers inflammation levels. A good reason to roll out your mat right?
Tip 7: Take soy products
Two glasses of soya milk a day for three months can already have a positive effect. Responsible for the improvement is the substance Lunasine that, in combination with other proteins present in soy, does good things in your body.
Tip 8: Drink green tea
Coffee drinkers among us may not like to hear this, but: get on the tea. Green tea is packed with antioxidants that reduce inflammation.
Tip 9: Have a glass of alcohol
Too much alcohol is not good for many reasons. But moderate alcohol consumption appears to have a better effect on inflammation values than no alcohol at all. So feel free to enjoy your wine or drink.
Are my inflammation levels up?
Many people walk around unnoticed with chronic inflammation in their bodies. Often there are no specific symptoms that indicate an inflammation. Vague' complaints such as fatigue, loss of appetite, fever, night sweats, cramps or skin rashes, coughing or a runny nose can indicate inflammation in the body. A blood test may be conclusive.
Measuring C-reactive protein
If an inflammation occurs somewhere in the body, a lot of CRP circulates in the blood within six to eight hours. In response to inflammation, the liver produces the protein CRP (short for 'C-reactive protein'), which then enters the bloodstream. Taking a tube of blood from the arm is enough for a reliable test. An elevated value of more than 10 mg/l indicates an acute infection. The doctor will then carry out additional tests to find the cause and location.
High CRP values
CRP levels are often highest (>100 mg/L) in the following cases:
- bacterial infections;
Moderately elevated CRP values
Moderately elevated CRP levels (<100 mg/L) are more commonly seen in the following situations:
- viral infections;
- tuberculosis (TB);
- chronic inflammation.
More accurate measuring
To measure these low values accurately, Bloodtesting.nl uses the High sensitivity C-Reactive Protein (hsCRP) parameter. The HsCRP is very sensitive and therefore a better indicator of inflammation in the body than the normal CRP test. From 1 mg/l hsCRP there is already a slightly increased risk of cardiovascular disease. These values can be found in apparently healthy persons.
Hs-CRP; ultra-sensitive, is a test that can detect very low-grade inflammatory responses. Several recent studies have shown that the hs-CRP, especially when combined with total cholesterol and HDL cholesterol, is a strong predictor of future coronary disease (coronary heart disease is a disease caused by abnormalities in the coronary arteries) in apparently healthy individuals.
A subdivision was made for the low values of hs-CRP as a predictor of heart disease:
- Smaller than < 1 mg/l: No increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
- Between 1-3 mg/l: Slightly increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
- Greater than > 3.0 mg/l: High risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
This indicator is only applicable if acute inflammation can be excluded.
- Greater than > 10 mg/l: Indicates an acute infection, e.g. by bacteria
The CRP test is used to determine whether there may be inflammation, for example in the abdomen, to better understand inflammatory diseases, for example in some forms of rheumatism or autoimmune diseases. The CRP test is not specific enough to show a cause of inflammation. .
In healthy people without inflammation the CRP-value in the blood is usually lower than 10 mg/l.
Also want to know if your inflammation levels are okay?
For €19,- euro you can add an hs-CRP test to your research:
Add this test to your general medical check-up, for example .
At the National Health Check-up, the regular CRP is measured.
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