What I Learned About Inflammation
Last updated: June 2021
I admit! I'm a bit of a junkie when it comes to learning about the mind-body relationship and the relationship between inflammation and the skin.
Educating for understanding not problem solving
I'm continuously signing up for countless online healing summits so I can further educate myself about what I don't know, so I can empower myself with the best practices to take care of my health and my body. It's a bit of a dance to balance so much information and wanting to be my own advocate about my body. At the same time, I've struggled with my pattern of “attacking what's wrong” and trying to fix the problem instead of focusing on the inherent wholeness and health that already resides inside me. I have written several articles about this type of process, allowing whatever is trying to move through, whether emotional, mental, or physical, and listening to the body as a voice for healing. With all of this said, the true opportunity is when I can pause and step back, allowing my inner wisdom to lead me, paying attention to what is available “for" me vs. getting attached to “figure something out” with againstness energy.
Inflammatory diseases include eczema
About a month ago, I had signed up for the chronic inflammation summit in which I did not attend, as usual. Though a week later, there was a free 3-day replay. I can't tell you the reason why, though whatever it was, called me to listen in. I was listening to one interview after another, sharing different areas of inflammation in the body. I am so incredibly grateful for all these experts and their profound insights and teachings in the spectrum of inflammation. I was quite surprised and happy to learn that they included eczema in many of these dialogues, which allows me to understand how prevalent it is becoming in these alternative and medical circles.
Causes of inflammation
I learned so much about the deeper causes of inflammation that I wanted to share just a few things that I hope might be helpful to explore as possible contributors to eczema and inflammation that go outside the box of traditional diets, creams, and steroid protocols that we probably all know by now.
While, of course, I'm not a doctor or diagnosing or even suggesting what is best for anyone, I'm only offering ideas that might be worthy of exploration that could be factors to the condition.
The relationship between liver function, gut, and eczema
Eczema can be viewed as a sign of some other systemic health condition. In almost all cases, eczema and other skin conditions, which is considered an autoimmune skin condition, could be linked to systemic inflammation, poor gut health, or compromised liver function.
Gut health and skin health
Optimal gut health plays a vital role in strengthening immunity and overall wellness and can be reflected through our skin health. More and more, research is linking imbalances in the gut to diseases that may not at first seem connected to gut function. Work by several researchers has linked intestinal permeability (leaky gut) to chronic respiratory allergies/rhinitis, asthma, and eczema.
Liver function and inflammation
The liver is an important organ of the digestive system, and everything that is eaten is screened for toxins by the liver. When these are causing inflammation, it means the liver has to work much harder to perform its important function. If your liver is not doing its job of breaking down toxins efficiently, they must be eliminated from your body by other means…in many cases, they come out through your skin. When excessive toxins build up in the deeper layers of the skin, this causes inflammation.
My experiences with liver issues
For me personally, aside from leaky gut issues, my liver has been essential to nurture for keeping my skin healthy, and it's been an ongoing journey. I have navigated the Epstein-Barr virus in my liver, as well as parasites in my liver and intestines. All of these have contributed to my flare-ups. Sometimes the liver enzymes in traditional western medicine blood tests show normal range results though that’s the tricky part in which tending to your liver can be overlooked for issues with our skin. I have had to work with a functional medicine doctor, who looks at all the body’s systems, a biology-based approach that focuses on identifying and addressing the root cause of disease - they don’t look at just the skin, or just the gut, the liver, etc. They look at all the systems functioning together and look at how each symptom contributes to the presenting problem.
There are so many layers
While there are many layers to unfold when it comes to inflammation, including life traumas, limiting beliefs, learned patterns and behaviors, not to mention daily life stressors that we have become accustomed to as normal, there are other angles to look at beyond the typical. I have had to look into these other sources because of my intense eczema experience, which I have had for decades, and go beyond the food and environmental factors, even with medication!
I hope this can offer some things to consider that you might not have known and to stay open to other possibilities that can be supportive as we navigate this road.
What type of infection do you deal with most often?