Just came back to work from a great lecture on general inflammation by Dr. David Seaman, DC, MS. Did you know that what you eat can tear your ligaments and discs? In the scientific literature there are hundreds of published papers over the last 20 years that prove and support this concept.
Pro-inflammatory foods will ultimately weaken ALL tissues; muscles, bones, nerves and organs to the point of failure! Not only will you gain weight that is hard to lose but you joints and muscles will weaken and become arthritic WITHOUT physical trauma. Osteoarthritis has been traditionally taught as “wear and tear” or “injury” arthritis but now has been proven to be autoimmune triggered by food and environmental factors. Yes you will have an arthritic knee after that football tackle but it will heal and not chronically swell as you get older from the injury if you have a “good” diet. But the swollen knees and shoulders as you age are from your poor diet which has made you over-weight and environmental pollutants which get “stuck” inside your body weakening it further.
This concept of tissue degradation because of destructive components becoming part of normal tissues like muscles and tendons explains how seemingly low force movements cause BIG injuries that seem trauma or mechanical in origin when they are not. Over time, years and decades your muscles become infiltrated by “bad” fats, inflammatory molecules and immune cells that cause inflammation as part of the clean-up process related to this daily tissue micro tearing or damage. This infiltration means that your tendons, muscles and cartilage(discs) are not as dense and strong later in life like they were when you were younger since this is an accumulation process over time. This weakening of your tissues takes a prolonged amount of time. Now add aging, meaning that your body doesn’t respond as efficiently or fast as it used to at the chemical level, this in turn slows down our physical performance and healing. As time and over-eating these “bad” foods continues you accumulate “junk” in your cells or pro-inflammatory molecules. Now when a 35 or 45 year old tears a meniscus while jogging or walking up the stairs instead of thinking injury from physical activity you should consider tissue failure under normal physical stress caused by poor diet! This was NOT a mechanical injury albeit the stepping or running triggered it but it only tore or became subluxated because of the acquired structural weakness due to chemical mediators. FAT. This was a directly related to your bad diet.
So now you show up at the physical therapist’s office they treat you like they always have, for a “mechanical” injury and do rehab and you heal. Maybe you were sharp enough to see your chiropractor and they do something similar and add chiropractic adjustments (PT’s are not legally aloud to adjust or manipulate joints in most states). And here too your knee heals and you’re running again. But… If the weakened tissue from pro-inflammatory agents like leukotrienes is not addressed your lifestyle will cause other tissues to fail and you will be destined to repeat this back and knee injury scenario again and again! Worse yet this same degradation from eating poorly is happening EVERYWHERE in your body; your heart, your kidneys, your liver, you intestines, your brain, your sexual organs, everywhere. Then one day you middle aged and you have a heart attack. All this could most likely have been prevented had someone caught the problem, the poor diet.
In our office we not only do the chiropractic, the physical therapy rehab we always include the nutritional detective work to give our patients the fullest recovery and lowest chance of re-injury or organ failure. If this pro-inflammatory state that sugar, grains and refined oils has led you to isn’t addressed you will be a cardiac or brain disease victim later in life if you are not one already. According to top researchers, Carey Lumbeng and Alan Saltiel1 these joint and muscle injuries should be treated like heart disease and not just soft tissue injuries. (I have paraphrased their exact comment).
If you do not address your diet and environment you will be destined for a shortened life full of muscle and joint injuries, unnecessary prescriptions and doctor visits. Find a holistic doctor that uses chiropractic, nutrition and rehab exercise to fix your injuries and improve your total health.