Relationship between inflammation and weight gain

The concept of “eating less and moving more” has been told as the absolute truth and yet today we know that there are many other factors that an contribute to the inability to loose weight: stress, autoimmune diseases, gut issues, hormone imbalance, leptin and insulin resistance to name a few.

The common denominator from the above listed conditions with the incapacity to loose weight is called : chronic inflammation in the body.

Inflammation in itself is not a bad thing, it is our body’s natural response that helps us fight injury and infection. Inflammation doesn’t happen only in response to injury or illness. An inflammatory response can happen also when the immune system goes into action without injury or infection to fight. Then we have a problem.

There are five key signs of acute inflammation:

Pain: continuous or only to touch of a certain area

Redness: Due to increase of blood supply in the affected area

Loss of function: moving, bending, swelling

Swelling: build up of fluids

Heat: increased blood flow that increases heat on affected area

What is the connection between the inflammation and weight gain?

The relationship between inflammation and weight gain is a two way street, almost like. Vicious circle. Weight gain can cause inflammation and inflammation can cause weight gain. When we overeat we trigger the immune system which makes our body hold on to excessive inflammation. If we overeat and hold on to more body fat (especially visceral fat) we can directly cause more chronic type of inflammation that lead to more serious diseases such as diabetes and arteriosclerosis. This is why the key or one of the key elements to talk about here is your GUT. 

It is now clear from all the research done that the gut microbiome plays a huge role in weight management. What we eat, how we digest foods, what nutrients are absorbed, which ones pass through all happens in the gut. Studies show that the gut microbiome in healthy individuals looks different than in those that are obese. Because of the difference in the gut microbiome in obese individuals, the immune system gets weak and changes in such a way that feeds low-grade inflammation and triggers the metabolic changes that happen with obesity. When we eat processed foods, too much sugar, bad fats our gut lining changes and consequently our immune system gets wracked causing low grade inflammation. Being in a state on constant low-grade inflammation becomes second nature to certain people. They start “living with it” without the basic understanding that this is causing their weight gain. 

What can you do to treat your inflammation?

-Eating healthy anti inflammatory foods (berries, leafy greens, wild-caught fish like salmon, avocados, coconut products, fermented foods, olives, olive oil)

-Plenty fo quality sleeps

-Check your vitamin D levels

-Reduce as much as you can exposure to toxins and chemicals 

-Practice more stress releasing techniques (meditation, breathing, exercise, walking

-IF has been shown very effective in reducing inflammation so give it a try anywhere between 16 and 18h fasts and see how you feel

-Certain supplements can help: curcumin, tumeric, fish oil, chlorella, spirulina

It is definitely better to try all the natural ways to heal your inflammation before taking corticosteroids just because these work short-term. Long-term they can have a negative affect and cause even more inflammation in your body.

Pubmed/University of Oslo