Recently I was lucky enough to attend the Women's Health Seminar with Dr. Sara Gottfried in South Africa. Of the many pearls that she shared with us, the role of 'inflammatory tone' in almost all lifestyle-related, chronic diseases, really stood out for me. For example, if you have high impact genetic variations on key estrogen detox genes, are estrogen dominant AND have high inflammation markers; you are 40% more at risk for an estrogen positive breast cancer. This is HUGE!
Reducing and quelling inflammation in your body could really improve your health span and quality of life. I felt that it was worth a closer look, so I pulled out my 8-year old DNA HEALTH report to refresh my memory on my genetic predisposition for inflammation. The result shows that I've high impact genetic variations on the key inflammation genes, in particular, the master gene in the inflammatory response pathway - the IL-1 gene.
This means that genetically I am predisposed to a slower "switch off" after being exposed to an inflammasome (bacteria, injury, virus, UV, radiation, acidity etc etc). Too many of these; too often means that I could be living with low-grade inflammation. As Dr Sara Gottfried explains, this creates a bad neighbourhood for DNA damage to occur.
Currently, I suffer from chronic inflammation in my neck and back. The pain from these areas makes it easy for me to identify the location of my inflammation. However, sometimes you may not get such a clear indication. Inflammation can cause belly fat, brain fog, skin problems and GUT problems that you may think is caused by something else.
Time for some serious biohacking of my own! I thought that while on I'm on holiday, I would add in some new anti-inflammatory choices and tools while removing inflammation stressors too.
Here's what I did:
1. Bristol Stool Chart: I checked my stool to determine whether my GUT was inflamed. This is a quick and easy way to ascertain the status of your GUT. If I had noticed the signs of inflammation, I would have ordered our Leaky GUT test for a more detailed lab result to assist me in improving the integrity of my GUT.
2. Mito Food Plan: We believe in 'food first', so I need to review my diet. My DNA diet results indicate that I am best suited to a Mediterranean Diet so the Mito-Food Plan (short for mitochondrial food plan) is perfect for me as it is a modified Mediterranean Diet plan with a keen focus on reducing inflammation and stimulating mitochondria health and growth.
3. Intermittent Fasting: Fasting overnight for at least 13 hours results in slight ketosis before you eat your first calories in the morning. Research has shown it helps to reset your metabolism, increase cytoprotection thus reducing inflammation and hormesis.
4. MCT oil: MCT oil is part of the Mito Food Plan and by adding in a tablespoon to my morning coffee, research tells me that I can improve my memory and reduce inflammation.
5. CBD oil: I started with 3 drops at night and couldn't wake up the next morning. I should have known better as I am a slow metaboliser of most things. Once I reduced the dose to a single drop, I slept so well and over time felt calmer. I also noticed that my neck and shoulder pain started to lessen.
6. Omega 3: A recent study on the benefits of a high dose of omega 3 in the treatment of chronic inflammation showed that 6g of Omega 3 daily has a significant effect on CRP bio-markers. So I thought that I would increase my intake to around 4g daily.
7. Curcumin: Curcumin is one of today’s most exciting dietary food supplements, impressing scientists around the world with its remarkable multiple clinical applications, health benefits and as a disease-fighting agent. Turmeric Curcumin is known as the 'Golden Spice of Life'. One of the healthiest and most important dietary supplement on the planet, it is known to improve your health and positive well-being. It’s well known for natural anti-inflammatory properties as well as its role in increasing circulation, and optimal joint health and mobility.
- I Reduced the frequency of my runs from daily to every third day and replaced my off days with walking and swimming.
- Forced me to relax. This is very hard for me and I need to coach myself on this one. I made mindful decisions to read, nap, do puzzles daily while on holiday.
- No more melatonin. Long-term use of melatonin can increase inflammation. I have been supplementing with melatonin on and off for 8 years so I decided to stop using it and try the CBD oil instead.
After these biohacking steps; I can honestly say that I have not taken an anti-inflammatory in 5 weeks, my sleep has improved, I lost weight on my belly and I have felt an improvement in my mood (this it could also be because I am on holiday!).
Visit our INFLAMMATION SHOP learn more. Start by ordering a DNA test so that you can determine your unique genotype for inflammation.
MY DNA CHOICES.