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Pain and Inflammation
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A few years ago, as you may remember, I was in constant pain from my knee and hip. It was so bad that I could not find a comfortable enough position to sleep. I couldn't walk up steps. It was unrelenting; I was miserable.

Meditation helped. I was often able to distance myself from the pain for a period of time. And the "flow" experience of reading or working on an all-absorbing task helped block off the pain temporarily.

But none of the above actions addressed the root cause of the pain, and when the other knee began to give out from the same kind of pain, I was frantic.

I came across a book which advocated a certain way of eating to reduce inflammation. The author argued that many of us have a low-level inflammatory response all our lives to certain foods and that the inflammatory response at some point flares up into massive all-out war. And consequent pain.

The argument made sense to me, and I set about tossing out everything the book listed as possible culprits. I replaced them with items Dea mentioned in her comment yesterday: lots of fruits and vegetables, nuts, eating sparingly of fish and chicken and cheese, a very occasional serving of foods containing gluten, an egg once in a while.

To my amazement, the pain went away. After 3 months or so, completely away. I still have twinges every now and then (pathways engraved by earlier pain?) when I eat some foods on the inflammatory list, but nothing compared to the agony of a few years ago.

We are what we eat, and in my case I am no longer eating foods to which my body reacts with inflammation and pain. (I've tried going off and eating the way I used to. Pain returned, big time.)

I know this sounds embarrassingly New Age-y and all, but I'm a pragmatist. If it works, it can go ahead and sound crazy. I'm going to keep eating the way that keeps me feeling good.

In, conclusion, I raise my coffee cup in salute to you and wish you all good food and the best of health.

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