Inflammation is necessary in our body to fight infection but our body should be able to turn on and off that inflammation as necessary. Inflammation becomes harmful if chronic and/or systemic. Inflammation is evidence of the body’s loss of tolerance. Good or bad? Well, it depends, cells secrete chemicals (e.g. cytokines such as interleukins) which drive the body to have an appropriate and balanced immune response:
o Calm the body (anti-inflammatory) or
o Alarm the body (inflammatory)
Remember, everything you eat, drink, breathe, do, think, and experience is causing the body to respond real-time, all the time. Common chronic inflammatory symptoms are often what people think of as “what runs in my family or the consequences of “just getting old”! Swollen joints, achy muscles, congestion, headaches, diarrhea, constipation, GERD, depression, lethargy, ongoing fatigue, skin rashes, itchiness, bloating, poor memory, irritability, brain fog… But they can become things we know to be highly-debilitating or deadly. Diabetes, Atherosclerosis, Asthma, Multiple Sclerosis, Alzheimers, Cancer…
What is Autoimmunity?
Autoimmunity is the failure of an organism to recognize its own constituent parts as self, which allows an immune response against its own cell. There are over a hundred different varieties of AI including Lupus (SLE), MS, RA, Sjogren’s, Type 1 diabetes, Hashimoto’s, Graves, Celiac, Crohns, Psoriasis…
Factors involved in AU dynamics are: genetics, intestinal permeability, weak imbalanced immune system and environmental triggers (ie. LPS, viruses, pathogenic microbes, molecular mimicry, allergens, food sensitivities, toxicity, stress).
According to Dr Hyman, these are 9 steps to treat an Autoimmune Condition:
1. Check for hidden infections — yeast, viruses, bacteria, Lyme, etc. — with the help of a doctor, and treat them.
2. Check for hidden food allergens with IgG food testing. Two of the most common are dairy and gluten (the protein in wheat).
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. Many disease dynamics start in the gut.
6. Use nutrients such as fish oil, vitamin C, vitamin D, and probiotics to help calm your immune response 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. Whenever possible, work with a Functional medicine doctor or health coach
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