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Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Inflammation Is the Source of Most Diseases, and Diet Is the Major Cause of Inflammation


When you hear the word “inflammation,” do you think of aches and pains in your joints, and address those symptoms with an anti-inflammatory drug like Advil?

Thanks to what I learned from Golden’s Body in Balance Wellness Center and its 8 Weeks to Wellness (“8WW”) program, I’ve come to think of inflammation differently — as a whole body syndrome that I may not experience yet, but which is quietly at work throughout my body, possibly leading to the development of one or more of these diseases:

Acid reflux
Heart disease                 
Multiple Sclerosis            

Inflammation is a root cause of all these diseases or disorders. But what causes inflammation? The short answer is our typical American diet, which includes more “refined” foods using ingredients that didn’t even exist decades ago when the rates of most such diseases was much lower. Lack of exercise and poor stress management also contribute to the problem.

In a previous column I described how the low-fat dietary movement which began in the 1950’s resulted in the creation of more sugary products, and how sugar is literally addictive, in that eating sugar makes you want more sugar. It turns out that dietary fat doesn’t cause body fat, sugar does.

At Body in Balance Wellness Center I learned that increased consumption of sugar and of those carbohydrates which convert quickly to sugar is what creates inflammation and, in turn, causes disease.

The medical industry prescribes drugs to address each syndrome’s symptoms instead of taking the less costly approach of reducing the cause of inflammation which led to the syndrome. That kind of shift would cost the drug industry big-time.

When you see how Americans are getting more obese and less healthy, it makes sense to conclude that something is seriously wrong with our lifestyle.

In 8WW I learned how to eat an anti-inflammatory diet, exercise in a way that reduces inflammation and handle stress in a way that prevents inflammation.  For me, that means living in a way that will support life to the fullest for a long time. At 69, Rita and I are feeling younger every year!

I’m inspired by the experience of Travis McGinnis, 38, who, like me, completed a program at Body in Balance Wellness Center, 755 Heritage Rd., Golden. His program was the 4-week Summer Blast; mine was 8WW. Like me, Travis lost most of his belly fat by eating the way I’ve been describing: removing sugar and high-glycemic index carbohydrates from our diet and replacing them with quality, non-inflammatory foods, and combining it with twice-weekly training sessions at Body In Balance’s fitness center.  Travis wanted to look better, feel better, and be around in the future for his 3 kids!  Here are his before and after pictures:

I see Travis at the fitness center when our appointments overlap. He attributes his weight loss and improved energy level to cutting sugar out of his diet and learning to work out in a way that was customized for his body. The results have been outstanding!

I’m also inspired by the example of Harold and Betty Payte, 86 and 85 years old, who recently won the Mayor's Award for Excellence in Golden. They completed the very first 8WW course two years ago and now lead 3-mile walks around Golden twice weekly — and take their own 3-mile walks the rest of the week. They attribute their strength and vitality to their experience of 8WW and continued chiropractic care, too.

Drs. Leah and Scott Hahn, the chiropractors who own and operate Body In Balance, teach free classes on the holistic principles — including nutrition, exercise, and stress management — behind 8WW and other programs. I encourage you to attend an 8WW information session next Wednesday, November 16th, at 6:30 pm. Call 303-215-0390 to reserve your seat(s). Travis & I will both be there to answer questions about our experiences and answer your questions.

Published Nov. 10, 2016, in the YourHub section of the Denver Post

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