DURING THE HOLIDAY SEASON we are under HIGHER STRESS, SLEEP DEPRIVED, and loaded up on CARBS, SUGAR, PROCESSED FOODS, ALCOHOL, and DRUGS. They are the precipitating factors of a SEASON of CHRONIC INFLAMMATION, which is the ROOT CAUSE of our Medical and Psychological Maladies.
INFLAMMATION is both good and bad. ACUTE INFLAMMATION (cuts and scrapes), offer us protection and relief from an uncomfortable interaction with the environment.
CHRONIC INFLAMMATION, below our radar, can be caused by outside infection (Lyme disease, etc), Genetics, Environmental Pollution (water or air), and especially by LIFESTYLE (stress, smoking, vaping, high sugar & carbs, and most importantly by poor quality and length of sleep). These factors can lead to changes in the neurotransmitters and neurocircuits in the brain, leading to Physical Pain, Depressive Symptoms, and possible Relapse or Addiction.
Our body redirects it's energy from the every tasks of health and wellness, to fight this silent CHRONIC INFLAMMATION. When our body, from various causes, reaches a TOXIC LEVEL of Inflammation, we can start to experience pain and damage to our healthy tissues, like our BRAIN, LUNGS, JOINTS, BLOOD VESSELS, INTESTINES, and SKIN, which altogether can foster depression.
During this Holiday time, feeling stressed and in pain, we are more susceptible to outside influences and poor judgement. RELIEF = REWARDS when it comes to pain or depression. The often readily-available Alcohol and Drugs give us RELIEF, and this REWARD reinforces the potential for a depressive mood, which can lead to MISUSE, ABUSE, and then DEPENDENCE.
Focus on a LIFESTYLE that will minimize damage to our Body and Mind.
Have a HAPPY, SAFE, and HEALTHY Holiday Season.
Henry Balzani MD