Hey all. Been paleo for a few years, strict for the past 8 months. I have ankylosing spondylitis and have been working with Cordain's (and others') autoimmune protocol. I feel like paleo + my awesome strength and conditioning coach have helped reduce pain and inflammation over the past year. I've been able to cut my AS meds (Celebrex) by 75% and am more comfortable and active than I've been in years.
Last week I had a few tests run through my cardiologist and found out that my CRP (c-reactive protein) levels are normal (yay!), but my ESR (erythrocyte sedimentation rate) was off the charts (boo...). I was very surprised. The upshot from my doctor's POV is that, regardless of lower superficial pain in my joints, this high level of systemic inflammation will burn out my heart, kidneys, lungs, eyes, etc, and needs to be treated aggressively in the short term to be put into remission. Although I'm fully on board with paleo and its anti-inflammatory powers, I have to admit that I'm a little worried by the test results.
How do you reconcile a seeming reduction in the outward expression of inflammation (pain, stiffness), with increasing internal markers?