Getting An Auto Immune Condition Off Autopilot

Happy Weekend to you!  I trust you have had a lovely Christmas so far and are gearing up for a wonderful celebration to welcome 2013 in.  This is a perfect time to bring out your probiotics and liver herbs and if you are having trouble getting food to digest well, some digestive enzymes.

This blog is devoted to anyone who has or knows someone who has an autoimmune condition.  Although the very nature of autoimmunity would indicate the body is out of control, there is a lot that can be done to minimise the impact and even help the immune system become better equipped to handle the condition.

Usually an autoimmune condition has these elements associated with them - inflammation, faster cellular degeneration and tissue degradation.  Some examples of autoimmune conditions are Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus, Grave's disease, Hashimoto's disease, Ankylosing Spondilitis, Coeliac Disease, Cancer and Crohn's Disease to name a few.   There are literally hundreds of known auto immune conditions which are indicated when the immune systems' regulation of T1 helper cells are out of balance with the rest of the immune system.  Essentially your T Helper cells either regulate autoimmune/antibody response (T1) or allergic/inflammatory response (T2).  When you are in the womb, your T1 cells are set to below normal levels and T2 are set to a higher level than T1 so that you are not rejected by your mother's own immune response. In some cases, after birth - this balance doesn't reset and you are either left with a predisposed risk of allergic/inflammatory conditions, auto immune conditions - or for some - both.

Because the immune system is so complex, it is important to give the body every little bit of help when it is managing an autoimmune condition. Many (like Crohn's disease patients I have seen) have been able to successfully reverse the high inflammatory state of their condition simply by making necessary dietary changes and introducing a well balanced plan of soothing bowel herbs.  In all conditions relating to autoimmunity, the same principles apply - assist with the inflammation and protect from further damage - and in many cases, this will lay dormant an auto immune condition.

Here are my tips to get you started on when managing an autoimmune disease:

1.  Remove any known allergens and foods/chemicals you may be sensitive to.  This exposure will continue to call on your immune system - distracting it from achieving real balance.

2.  Start on a dietary regime that lifts your intake of antioxidant rich foods - these protect against the oxidative damage to the surrounding cells and tissues.  Grave's disease for example leaves a high oxidative stress impact on the cells of the thyroid and the other organs affected by a sped up metabolism.

3.  Support good gut health - I know I say this many times over, but I can't stress enough how important your gut is in an autoimmune condition.  I recommend to kill two birds with one stone and use a probiotic rich antioxidant food powder.

4.  Increase your intake of antiinflammatory herbs, calming nerve nutrients and soothing immune support.  A great tailored formula for you can be made on consultation.

5.  Consider a herbal and nutritional formula that specifically targets the management of autoimmune conditions.  It must contain Vitamin D as a minimum, as this vital nutrient regulates auto immune functions in the body and many autoimmune patients that I test are deficient.  This can be delivered in a once to twice a day capsule quite easily.

6.  Eliminate all inflammatory foods and beverages - some of my patients can actually feel the inflammation in their digestive systems after drinking alcohol.  This substance, coffee and sugar are the main offenders.  If you can reduce your over the counter pain medications as well, this will also help.

Remember - until you are on top of your autoimmune condition - you can't switch into autopilot mode and take your eyes off it - keep your hand on the landing gear and be absolutely sure you are on the ground first before you have clearance.

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