c-reactive protein


c reactive protein

C-reactive protein (CRP) is produced by the liver. Its level rises when there is inflammation in your body. LDL cholesterol not only coats the walls of your arteries, but it also damages them. This damage causes inflammation that the body tries to heal by sending a "response team" of proteins called "acute phase reactants." CRP is one of these proteins.


high sensitivity c-reactive protein

A high level of hs-CRP, i.e., greater than 3 mg/L, indicates acute inflammation and might be a sign of a serious infection, an injury, or chronic disease. Levels in this “red zone'' mean you're at greater risk for heart disease.

If you have high cholesterol, you've probably been told to lower the LDL number from your blood test. LDL is the "bad cholesterol," the type that contributes to plaque that can clog your arteries. This can lead to a heart attack or stroke.But that's only part of the story. Research shows that only 50% of people who suffered heart attacks had high LDL levels. So, many doctors use another test called the C-reactive protein test to help figure out who’s at risk.


c reactive protein levels

Less than 0.3 mg/dL: Normal (level seen in most healthy adults). 0.3 to 1.0 mg/dL: Normal or minor elevation (can be seen in obesity, pregnancy, depression, diabetes, common cold, gingivitis, periodontitis, sedentary lifestyle, cigarette smoking, and genetic polymorphisms).

One study found that testing for CRP levels is a better indicator of cardiovascular disease (CVD) than the LDL test. But, it's important to know that a CRP test is not a test for heart disease. It's a test for inflammation in the body.


What level of C reactive protein is concerning?

1.hs-CRP level of lower than 1.0 mg/L -- low risk of CVD (heart disease)

2.hs-CRP level of 1.0 mg/L and 3.0 mg/L -- moderate risk of CVD

3.hs-CRP level of more than 3.0 mg/L -- high risk of CVD

A high level could also be a sign of cancer, infection, inflammatory bowel disease, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, tuberculosis, or another disease.

Apart from acute infection or injury, CRP points to chronic or systemic inflammation. Its levels rise in response to chronic stress
High CRP levels are a marker of chronic inflammation, found in conditions such as diabetes, obesity, and heart disease.

chronic conditions


CRP is not only a marker of inflammation, but it also worsens any underlying inflammation. In the lining of blood vessels, CRP lowers nitric oxide and prostacyclin release, which worsens blood flow, while increasing the inflammatory compounds

Increases Blood Vessel Damage


Increased levels of LDL cholesterol in at-risk patients cause blood vessels to make more CRP, which, in turn, helps more LDL-C enter blood vessel cells.
CRP can partially predict the risk of dying from a heart attack, blood vessel disease, heart failure, and arrhythmias

High LDL and High CRP: A Deadly Combination


Research suggests that CRP may turn on a pro-inflammatory switch in blood vessels, making them narrower and stiffer – resulting in high blood pressure
Those with the highest CRP levels had a twofold greater risk of high blood pressure compared to those with the lowest CRP levels

High blood pressurer


Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of metabolic abnormalities that together increase the risk of diabetes and heart disease. These include:

1.High blood pressure
2. High blood sugar
3.Excess belly fat
4. High bad cholesterol/low good cholesterol

Metabolic Syndrome


Elevated CRP has been associated with obesity and abnormal fat metabolism in both adults and children. It is closely linked with high BMI and total calorie intake. Studies found that schoolchildren who were overweight/obese had higher levels of CRP



Several studies have found that high CRP levels were associated with a great risk of strokes, stroke complications, and death. Levels over 3 mg/ml were linked with a 40% increased risk



CRP is also increased in obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), which is when people stop breathing during sleep. Patients with more severe sleep apnea have higher CRP levels

Obstructive Sleep Apnea


Inflammation in Rheumatoid Arthritis is closely related to the production of CRP and pro-inflammatory cytokines. In patients with rheumatoid arthritis, high CRP is directly linked with worse symptoms

Rheumatoid Arthritis


CRP is also increased because of
1.Gum Disease
2.Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)
3. Fatigue
4.Vision Loss


  • Avocados
  • Beets 
  • Berries 
  • Broccoli 
  • Dark chocolate 
  • Fatty fish
  • Green tea

Exercising for about 30 minutes a day helps you lose weight, increase insulin sensitivity, and lower the production of cytokines from fats as well as mononuclear cells. Cytokines are proteins that aid cell signaling during inflammation, while mononuclear cells are considered inflammatory infiltrates.

Getting enough sleep equates to good health. This remains true when taking steps on how to reduce CRP levels naturally, as sleep deprivation is a marker of inflammation. If you have been experiencing poor sleep, see a doctor to get a full diagnosis of the cause or sleeping disorder involved. 

Individuals with high CRP levels associated with chronic diseases like diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and coronary heart disease often experience poor sleep. Additionally, people with insomnia also become more prone to increased C-reactive protein levels. 

Lifestyle changes cover the hallmark of practical ways to reduce CRP levels naturally. One crucial change is giving up tobacco smoking and heavy alcohol drinking.

Smoking contains substances that induce inflammation. The intensity of the inflammatory effects, however, depends on factors such as the type of tobacco, smoking frequency, and dose. On top of that, cigarette smoking also promotes autoimmunity, which correlates with high CRP levels. 

On the other hand, heavy alcohol drinking also contributes to chronic inflammation. As alcohol damages the liver and gastrointestinal tract, it leads to this immune response. 

Interestingly, moderate drinking has the opposite effect. In a 2015 review, it was pointed out that controlled consumption of alcohol reduces the production of inflammation markers, including C-reactive proteins

Body weight influences the production of C-reactive proteins. According to research, increased body weight results in high CRP levels. Hence, it makes sense to target and maintain a healthier weight if you’re looking for ways to reduce CRP levels.