The vast majority of chronic health conditions are inflammatory in nature and very often involve an autoimmune component. Inflammation is a normal human process that serves a very useful purpose. After an acute injury like an ankle sprain or low back muscle strain, inflammation serves to protect and heal the injured tissue. This inflammatory process usually resolves within a matter of days and the injured tissue heals within weeks to months.
Sustained inflammation is a different phenomenon. Normally there is a balance between immune cells that promote inflammation and those that dampen it. Chronic or sustained inflammation is a condition in which the immune system creates an unchecked supply of pro-inflammatory cells that can damage body tissues.
It is now recognized that most, if not all, chronic ailments such as cardiovascular disease, migraine headache, chronic pain, and autoimmune disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis, Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, Lupus, and Psoriasis are inflammatory in nature.
While it is recognized that these conditions result from an interaction between genetics and the environment, the trigger for each named disease is mostly elusive. In most cases, since a single underlying cause has not been identified, management of symptoms, usually with drugs, after a diagnosis has been made is the standard of care. There is no focus put on identifying, reducing, and eliminating the underlying causes.