During the brutal wildfire season of 2021, California's Dixie fire laid waste to more than 192,000 acres. The Bootleg/Log fire in Oregon was even larger, covering more than 400,000 acres.
Like those wildfires, inflammation in your body can spread, leaving scorched (well, damaged) tissue behind, according to a new study in the journal Cell.
When researchers looked at inflammatory conditions such as gum disease, arthritis, and heart disease, they found that those conditions can ignite inflammation in seemingly unconnected parts of the body. That's why people with gum disease often develop cardiovascular problems or arthritis, or those with arthritis are more likely to also end up with gum disease.
Why does that happen?
It turns out that your immune system gets so revved up by inflammatory conditions that new immune cells in the bone marrow's “nursery” are supercharged when they emerge and enter the bloodstream. Instead of battling outside invaders (such as bacteria and viruses), they cause inflammation in your cardiovascular system, joints, gums, and elsewhere.
That's why chronic inflammation needs to be avoided — or extinguished.
To do that, you need a balance of enough (but not excessive) physical exercise, restful sleep, smart stress management, and a diet with plenty of colorful fruits and vegetables, omega-3-rich fish such as salmon, and 100% whole grains.
Then your immune system can fight off potential diseases and avoid becoming the cause of a bad fire inside your body.