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EFA 101 recap: 1. there is an underlying inflammatory response associated with all pain; 2. chronic inflammatory conditions are associated with an essential fatty acid imbalance; 3. diet is largely responsible for this imbalance; and, 4. all forms of inflammation are ultimately controlled by a group of hormones known as eicosanoids.

Let’s delve a little deeper into this inflammatory response, the key to understanding our nation’s obesity epidemic, and to understanding the connection between obesity and chronic disease. The underlying cause of chronic disease comes from an increased production of arachidonic acid (AA). From AA come all the pro-inflammatory eicosanoids that in excess accelerate chronic disease. Virtually all chronic diseases can be viewed as a consequence of a continuing imbalance of good and bad eicosanoids.

Maintaining a proper EFA balance may be one of the most important preventative measures a person can take to reduce the likelihood of developing any of the chronic diseases of modern civilization such as diabetes, heart disease, obesity, irritable bowel syndrome, and autoimmune disease. “And for patients who may already have one of these diseases, EFA testing and therapy has been shown to reduce both morbidity and mortality associated with these diseases.” Wow!!! That’s an incredibly powerful statement.

What to do…what to do. Well, how about EFA testing for starters. Find out if an imbalance exists; seems obvious. We do that here at All-Star Chiropractic! Well, then how about EFA therapy to restore EFA balance and eliminate the inflammatory response and your risk for a chronic inflammatory condition! We do that here at All-Star Chiropractic!

Next up: Essential Fatty Acids 103! In EFA 103 I’ll discuss the conversion of AA to Prostaglandin E2 and resultant inflammatory response. Stay tuned and be well!!!

References:

Boswell M, Cole EB. Weiner’s Pain Management: A Practical Guide for Clinicians. American Academy of Pain Management. 7th Edition, 2006, pp.584-585

Omoigui S. The Biochemical Origin of Pain: The Origin of All Pain is Inflammation and the Inflammatory Response: Inflammatory Profile of Pain Syndromes. Medical Hypothesis. 2007, Vol 69, pp. 1169-1178

Sears B. Toxic Fat: When Good Fat Turns Bad. 2008. ISBN: 978-1-4016-0429-5

Stoll A. The Omege-3 Connection: The Groundbreaking Omega-3 Anti-Depression Diet and Brain Program. Simon & Schuster; 2001.

Changes in the modern diet are largely responsible for the increasing incidence of essential fatty acid (EFA) imbalances and deficiencies. By the turn of the century (1900), the ratio of omego-6 to omega-3 fats was about 4:1. The current American ratio is about 25:1. Huge Difference and NOT Good; here’s why!

Hey! Ever heard of Diabetes, Heart Disease, Obesity, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, or Autoimmune Disease? Well then, perhaps you already know they’re all Chronic Inflammatory Conditions (CIC) that go along with EFA imbalance. And, you probably know that these CICs are currently treated with steroids, prednisone, aspirin, and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Big deal right? WRONG! The problem with such drug therapies is that they prevent the formation of “good” anti-inflammatory eicosanoids.

Eic o san o what? Basically, eicosanoids are signaling molecules that control inflammation or immunity and act as messengers in the central nervous system. Eicosanoids derive from omega-3 or omega-6 EFAs. The omega-6 eicosanoids are generally pro-inflammatory; omega-3’s are much less so. The amounts and balance of these fats in a person’s diet WILL affect the body’s eicosanoid controlled functions and potential for an inflammatory condition.

Irrespective of the type of pain (acute or chronic, peripheral or central pain…) and irrespective of the characteristic of the pain (sharp, dull, aching, burning, stabbing…), ALL pain arises from the inflammation and the inflammatory response!!! Therefore, obviously, a successful outcome is one that results in less inflammation.

Next up: Essential Fatty Acids 102! In EFA 102 I’ll discuss the science behind this deleterious inflammatory response. Stay tuned and be well!!!

References:

Omoigui S. The biochemical origin of pain: The origin of all pain is inflammation and the inflammatory response: Inflammatory profile of pain syndromes. Medical Hypothesis. 2007, Vol 69, pp. 1169-1178

Boswell M, Cole EB. Weiner’s Pain Management: A Practical Guide for Clinicians. American Academy of Pain Management. 7th Edition, 2006, pp.584-585

Sears B. Toxic Fat: When Good Fat Turns Bad. 2008. ISBN: 978-1-4016-0429-5

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