Inflammation is an essential part of your immune system response, which occurs in response to trauma or a perceived threat. There are two types of inflammation: acute and chronic. Acute inflammation is not harmful. It occurs in response to an injury, such as a cut or bruise, allowing your body to heal and repair. Chronic inflammation, on the other hand, can be harmful. It occurs when the immune system is flared up too often. Immune activity can become the new norm. This is believed to increase risk of disease over time. Diseases linked to inflammation include (but are not limited to) diabetes, heart disease, depression, autoimmune disorders and inflammatory bowel disease.