However, in modern society, inflammation is rampant. We suffer inflammation coming from every angle—internally and externally, from pollution, toxic products, pesticides and hydrogenated oils on our food, processed sugar, stress, etc. Inflammatory pathways can cause breakouts, rashes, premature aging, poor digestion, reproductive issues, hormonal imbalances, and even serious tissue damage and disease, which makes it now our rallying crusade. We’re in constant battle against inflammation.
There are many ways to defend against inflammation. Quality sleep is one of them, and staying hydrated is another. Making sure to exercise and move our lymph and get good circulation is helpful when it comes to healing and immune strength. But we can also actively work toward a daily anti-inflammatory diet, and make sure we are using anti-inflammatory compounds in our topical products to prevent or treat skin flare-ups. Here are some great allies to look for:
This golden root can be juiced, but is easiest kept around in powder form. It contains a compound known as curcumin, a powerful anti-inflammatory. It is an active compound that interacts with the causes of inflammation on a molecular level. Use it in cooking, or warm up a cozy and comforting cup of golden milk. Just don’t forget the black pepper. We need black pepper to make the potent properties of curcumin bio-available to us.
This refreshing, lightly caffeinated beverage should be a staple in everyone’s daily diet due to its incredible anti-inflammatory effects, as well as a slew of other benefits. It is loaded with antioxidants to fight free-radical damage, but it also contains a compound known as epigallocatechin-3-gallate, or EGCG. The National Library of Medicine tells us that green tea and EGCG “suppress the gene and/or protein expression of inflammatory cytokines and inflammation-related enzymes.”
This vital little ingredient is one of our favorites to lock away in our skincare glossary for many reasons. Not only does it fight cancer-causing effects of long-term exposure to UV rays, but it helps to stabilize the skin barrier, lock in moisture, promote collagen synthesis, and improve surface texture. It is also, of course, on theme with anti-inflammatory properties. It actively reduces inflammation and redness in acne and rosacea with regular topical use. Yeah, it’s what we deem a “hero” ingredient by far.