How to Stop Attacking Yourself: 9 Steps to Heal Autoimmune Disease. | elephant journal
We are facing an epidemic of allergic (60 million people), asthmatic (30 million people), and autoimmune disorders (24 million people). Autoimmune diseases include rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, multiple sclerosis, psoriasis, celiac disease, thyroid disease, and the many other hard-to-classify syndromes in the 21st century.
Your immense system is your defense against invaders. It is your internal army and has to clearly distinguish friend from foe – to know you from others. Autoimmunity occurs when your immune system gets confused and your own tissues get caught in friendly cross-fire.
Your body is fighting something – an infection, a toxin, an allergen, a food or the stress response – and somehow it redirects its hostile attack on your joints, your brain, your thyroid, your gut, your skin, or sometimes your whole body.
The immune confusion results from what is referred to as molecular mimicry. Conventional approaches don’t have a method for finding the insult causing the problem. Functional medicine provides a map to find out which molecule the cells are mimicking.
Nine Steps to Treating Autoimmune Disease:
1. Check for hidden infections — yeast, viruses, bacteria, Lyme, etc. — with the help of a doctor, and them.
2. Check for hidden food allergens with IgG food testing or just try The UltraSimple Diet, which is designed to eliminate most food allergens.
3. Get tested for celiac disease, which is a blood test that any doctor can do.
4. Get checked for heavy metal toxicity. Mercury and other metals can cause autoimmunity.
5. Fix your gut. For details, see my blog on irritable bowel syndrome.
6. Use nutrients such as fish oil, vitamin C, vitamin D, and probiotics to help calm your immune system naturally.
7. Exercise regularly – it’s a natural anti-inflammatory.
8. Practice deep relaxation like yoga, deep breathing, biofeedback, or massage, because stress worsens the immune response.
9. Tell your doctor about Functional Medicine and encourage him or her to get trained — go to functional medicine.org for more information and to get a copy of the Textbook for Functional Medicine.