Although inflammation usually implies pain and swelling, inflammation is really a healing response. Inflammation is the body's first defense against bacteria, virus or fungi. Acute inflammation in response to an injury or potential illness is normal. However, too much inflammation creates a cascade of problems. For example, high readings of C-reactive protein associated with inflammation can also be an indicator for heart problems.

Likewise, chronic inflammation in the gastrointestinal tract can lead to colon cancer. When we develop bone spurs or arthritis, the immune system may be attacking cartilage exposing the bone. A John Hopkins peer review study states that the drugs that lower inflammatory markers for disease also shorten the life span.

Unfortunately, once a body has killed off a disease, the immune system may attack other parts of the body. Chronic disease may result. The older we get, the more likely that a history of inflammation is present. Other causes of inflammation can be emotional stress, environmental stress, viruses, bacteria and foods. There are particular foods that fight inflammation, including salmon, walnuts, onions, blueberries, sweet potatoes, spinach, garlic , pineapple, ginger, wolfberries, clove and turmeric. Vegetables and fruit have the lowest inflammatory reaction in the body. Foods high in sulfur create a body odor but lower inflammatory process.

There are a number of essential oils that can be helpful to relieve inflammation. A teaspoon of wintergreen is the equivalent of almost twenty-two adult aspirin. Oregano has been shown to reduce inflammation by 94%. Myrrh oil is rated as the second best anti-inflammatory essential oil. Frankincense resin is the best treatment for arthritis. These oils can be mixed with neutral oils such as grape seed oil or olive oil and be applied directly to part of the body suffering from inflammation. They can also be used in diffusers for a constant stream of low levels of oils into the brain and body as a whole. Best of all, there are no side effects from the use of essential oils.

Author's Bio: 

Maria Low has twenty-five years of experience teaching and consulting in the natural health field. She has taken extensive training in both Europe and the United States. Maria lectures and travels internationally throughout the year. For more information about her Aspirations LLC business and to find out how to purchase essential oils, please visit or her blog at