The role of chronic inflammation in the development of disease is receiving increasing attention from the medical community.
Not unlike high blood pressure, it is increasingly looked to as the one factor we might be able to influence, which in turn could help us avoid a wide range of ailments ranging from cancer and heart disease to Alzheimer’s, diabetes, thyroid issues, arthritis, and so on.
In this free download, Dr. Baxter Bell discusses why inflammation plays such an important role in the development of disease and the role yoga can play in preventing or reducing chronic inflammation.
Age itself is a risk factor for developing chronic inflammation, Baxter notes. And, while we can’t change the fact that we’re getting older, we can influence other factors that trigger chronic inflammation.
Baxter further talks about some of the mechanics of how chronic inflammation causes the systems of the body to go haywire and trigger chronic diseases. Inflammation also appears to impact the gene expression, affecting which genes turn on and off, which again can accelerate the aging process or trigger a disease process.
Baxter goes into which factors increase and decrease inflammation in our body, and how our yoga practices can support choices that can help impact the levels of bodily inflammation.
Many people live low chronic inflammation without being aware of it, Baxter notes. It really requires a savvy health practitioner that you work with to become more aware of the presence of chronic inflammation and to do the necessary tests.
Working to reduce inflammation, he notes, is in many ways similar to Dean Ornish’s approach to reducing heart disease. You are not using drugs or surgical intervention, you’re learning how to use life-style options to self-regulate your health.
Yoga teachers, he notes, have a great repertoire that they can use to empower others. So, the hope is that this spreads not only from those of us that have the information we’re sharing, but also more evenly throughout the community.
Baxter further touches on research that shows that yoga appears to be a good tool to help lower systemic inflammation on a chronic basis. One study, for example, found that experienced yoga practitioners had much lower levels of inflammatory markers than novice practitioners. In fact, studies indicate that yoga asana practice, Pranayama, and meditation all offer useful tools that can be consistently used when studying yoga’s effect on inflammation.
You may also enjoy Baxter’s course, Yoga for Healthy Aging: Curbing Inflammation to Prevent Chronic Disease.