“‘Inflammation drives the aging process faster than any other biomarker,’ says physician Tasneem Bhatia, author of The 21-Day Belly Fix. ‘As we get older, inflammation increases, in part because our bodies are less adept at digesting and processing the nutrients we need to regulate it.’ It’s that growing inflammatory process that plays a role in so many diseases of aging.
“Inflammation is our body’s natural response to physical and microbial attack. ‘When you injure a muscle or a tendon, red and white blood cells migrate to the part of the body that’s injured to help heal it,’ says Jordan D. Metzl, a sports medicine physician and author of Dr. Jordan Metzl’s Workout Prescription. But chronic inflammation occurs when our bodies perceive that they’re under threat, putting our immune system in a perpetual state of attack; this dramatically increases our risk of heart disease, cancer, diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease. Check out some of the common places inflammation shows up and how you can fight the fire.”