Welcome to the second post on “30 days to change your life!” I’m taking the time to share with you why I did a Whole30 this past January and how it changed me. Please remember, I am not a dietitian or physician. I am a scientist and I used my body and health as my laboratory. I encourage you to pick up It starts with Food and read it cover to cover before starting your own Whole30. And if you missed it:
We hear this word often, but do we know what it means? In a nutshell, inflammation is your body’s way of telling you that something just isn’t right in the world. It is your immune system responding to some change in the body’s environment. There are two types:
Acute: meaning short lived. This is the type of inflammation you see when you cut your finger or scrape your knee and it gets red and filled with pus. It happens over seconds, minutes, hours and usually resolves in a few days.
Chronic: meaning long term. This is the type of inflammation that the Whole30 addresses. Chronic inflammation happens when something triggers an immune response in the body but the body does not shut the response off or the body initiates an immune response because it’s gone a bit haywire due to a lack of balance (aka homeostasis.) This lack of balance can take the form of excessive caloric consumption or elevated blood sugar levels, both hallmarks of a “typical” Western-style diet. This immune response just keeps going and going and going. This sounds like a good thing, right? Having immune cells constantly on patrol and killing?
While your body does have cells that go on “routine patrol” for invaders, having a constant stream of the full force of the immune system is taxing on both your immune system (those cells have to come from somewhere) and on your body tissues. Once the immediate threat is gone, in a chronic inflammation situation, the immune cells start attacking self. That means you.
Chronic inflammation can lead to many other health problems: heart disease, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and stroke to name a few. Not. Good.
How does the Whole30 address this inflammation? It requires you to cut out the foods that cause hormone imbalance (insulin, leptin, glucagon and cortisol) and gut-damage (your immune system’s home base in your gut… healthy gut=healthy immune system.) In short, the Whole30 allows you to push a “reset” button on your body, allowing your body to recover from the strains of our typical sugar saturated diet.
So, if you are finding yourself having a hard time dropping those last few pounds, or you have a cold or allergies that just won’t go away, or if you avoid activities because of that “bad” knee you’ve had since high school… you may be dealing with chronic inflammation.
What are you going to do about it?
Next time, we’ll chat more about hormones, calories and fat!
P.S. I forgot to mention! Change is a-comin’!! Stay tuned and keep an eye out for a change the the blog in the next few weeks!