The Inflammatory Score: Tracking Chronic Inflammation and Its Effects on Health

What is Inflammation and Why Does It Matter?

Inflammation is the immune system’s defense response to threatening agents like viruses, bacteria, and toxins. It sends white blood cells to the injured or infected site to remove the offending substance and begin the healing process.

Without an inflammatory response, the agents threatening the body wouldn’t have anything holding them back from spreading to nearby tissue, nor would there be anything to initiate tissue repair. That said, inflammation can become a problem if it lasts longer than necessary, which we will discuss further in this blog.

The rest of this blog will look at the following topics:

Overview of the Theriome 12 Metabolic Blood Test

Theriome’s metabolic blood test offers a unique approach to health assessment that sets us apart from other at-home microbiome test kits. We focus on 12 essential metabolic pillars to provide a comprehensive view of your well-being. These include,

  • Liver Health
  • Gut Health
  • Cardiovascular Health
  • Inflammatory Score
  • Environmental Toxin Exposure Index
  • Neurocognitive Index
  • Nutritional Index
  • Mutation Load
  • Aging Index
  • Integumentary Health
  • Reproductive Health
  • Mitochondrial Health

For each pillar, you’ll receive your results in a personalized score from 1 to 10, empowering you to take control of your health journey.

Spotlight on the Inflammatory Score as a Crucial Metabolic Pillar

At Theriome, we recognize the significance of inflammation in the body. The inflammatory score will tell you where your chronic inflammation levels are at and how these levels are affecting your health. With this knowledge, you can analyze your current lifestyle and other factors contributing to your score.

Understanding Chronic Inflammation

The Difference Between Acute and Chronic Inflammation

Acute inflammation is the body’s proper response to harmful stimuli. It recognizes the problem, removes the unwanted substances, and begins the process of healing. In chronic inflammation, the body continues to send out white blood cells despite there being no danger. This can lead to severe complications as the body attacks itself without a real threat.

Causes and Triggers of Chronic Inflammation

Bodily threats like pathogens, damaged cells, and toxic compounds cause inflammation. When chronic inflammation occurs, this is typically the result of one of the following:

  • An allergic reaction to external stimuli (Hypersensitivity)
  • Prolonged exposure to toxins
  • Autoimmune disorders
  • Autoinflammatory diseases
  • Untreated acute inflammation

Along with this, certain risk factors are associated with a higher risk of chronic inflammation, including obesity, smoking, and older age.

The Systemic Effects of Prolonged Inflammation

Systemic inflammation that goes untreated can harm healthy cells, tissues, and organs of the body. As a result, internal scarring and permanent damage may occur along with the development of incapacitating and fatal conditions such as heart disease and certain cancers.

The Health Implications of Chronic Inflammation

Chronic Inflammation and Cardiovascular Diseases

Chronic inflammation can significantly contribute to cardiovascular problems, including heart disease. Similarly, untreated inflammation can lead to the formation of blood clots, which is the leading cause of heart attacks and strokes.

The Role of Inflammation in Metabolic Disorders

Metabolic disorders create abnormal chemical reactions that disrupt vital processes, triggering the body’s inflammatory response. Inflammation is a defense mechanism against harmful stimuli and can help fight viral infection. That said, metabolic disorders create a chronic, inflammatory state that puts you at risk of healthy cell, tissue, and organ damage.

Inflammation’s Connection to Autoimmune Diseases and Allergies

Autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and multiple sclerosis trigger inflammation in the body. These conditions are categorized as inflammatory diseases because the immune system attacks its own tissue in response. Likewise, when the body has an allergic reaction to external stimuli, it produces inflammation in an attempt to reverse the effects of the allergen.

Strategies to Reduce Chronic Inflammation

Dietary Recommendations to Combat Inflammation

A diet rich in anti-inflammatory foods combats inflammation through natural antioxidants, polyphenols (protective compounds found in plants), magnesium, vitamin E, and other inflammation-fighting compounds.

  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Organic Fruit
  • Leafy Greens
  • Nuts
  • Wild Caught Fish

You can also use the lifestyle and dietary inflammatory index (DII) to view your inflammatory potential based on the foods you consume. These scoring systems offer an in-depth look at your diet’s specific vitamins, minerals, carbs, etc. Consider talking with your doctor about the DII and going through the process of looking at your dietary and lifestyle inflammation scores.

Certain food items are considered part of the “pro-inflammatory diet.” They should be eaten in moderation to avoid inflammation, including refined carbohydrates, fried food, sugary beverages, processed meats, and margarine.

The Benefits of Regular Exercise and Physical Activity

Exercise provides numerous benefits for your physical well-being, including reducing inflammation. Studies have found that just one 20-minute exercise session helps boost the immune system. It’s important never to overdo it while working out. Drink lots of water and give your body time to rest and heal.

Stress Management and Its Anti-Inflammatory Effects

Stress has detrimental effects on your health. It’s so impactful that recent studies have shown chronic stress even promotes cancer development. When you experience chronic stress, it overactivates the immune system, leading to inflammation.

Managing stress can relieve inflammation and other harmful effects. Consider taking part in activities that help with stress relief, such as establishing a sleep routine, going on daily walks, avoiding caffeine, meditation, and fun hobbies.

The Inflammatory Score: What It Measures and Why

Key Biomarkers and Indicators of Inflammation

There are three key inflammatory markers: C-reactive protein (CRP), erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR), and plasma viscosity (PV).

C-Reactive Protein

CRP is found in your bloodstream. High-sensitivity C-reactive protein has a circulation concentration that rises in response to inflammation. Because of this excessive levels can indicate inflammatory problems.

Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate

An ESR test can reveal existing or increasing inflammatory activity in your body by measuring how quickly red blood cells settle in a test tube over an hour. Red blood cells settle more slowly in the absence of inflammation. Using this information, the test can relay back any signs of inflammation.

Plasma Viscosity

PV indirectly measures how much inflammation exists in your body. This is done by looking at proteins and fibrinogen in your blood’s plasma. When the PV test detects high viscosity levels, it signifies an increase in these substances, leading to the thickening of plasma, which indicates inflammation.

Interpreting the Inflammatory Score: What Do the Numbers Mean?

The lab gives each key biomarker a range to determine whether your blood has higher than normal levels.

High-Level Test Results Indicating Inflammation

BiomarkersHigh Levels
C-Reactive Protein> 8 mg/L – 10 mg/L
Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate> 20 mm/hr for men> 20 mm/hr women
Plasma Viscosity> 1.75 – 2.00 mPa.s
Measurement Reference List

mg/L = milligrams per liter

mm/hr = millimeters per hour

mPa.s = milli pascal seconds

A wide range of research studies have shown a connection between patients with high inflammation and the risk of different health conditions. For example, studies from Harvard revealed that between participants with the highest and lowest inflammatory diet scores, those with the highest were at greater risk of cardiovascular disease and twice the risk of type 2 diabetes.

The Value of Monitoring Your Inflammatory Score

Early Detection and Proactive Health Management

Inflammation doesn’t always have outward symptoms, which can leave it unaddressed and at risk of worsening. When you’re aware of existing inflammation through your test results, this gives you the ability to be proactive in making positive changes. You can work with your doctor to develop changes to your lifestyle that may contribute to inflammation, such as shifts to your diet, activity levels, or stress management.

Personalized Recommendations Based on Inflammatory Score

The data outlined in your report aids in recognizing inflammatory potential, enhancing your decisions regarding nutrition and habits, and tailoring your healthcare to meet your specific requirements.

Unlock the power of personalized metabolic insights.

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