Autoimmune disease is a tricky subject. On average, patients will go up to 5 years with autoimmune conditions without a proper diagnosis.
Conventional medicine doctors often consider autoimmune diseases as having an unknown cause. This is a little misleading however as autoimmune conditions are reversible under proper circumstances. Holistic, functional, and integrative medicine doctors see your battle with autoimmune disease a little bit differently. We will dive into a few underlying causes of autoimmune diseases below.
First, what is autoimmune disease?
Autoimmune disease is when your immune system attacks your body because it is mistaking your joints, skin, organs, and more as foreign invaders. A healthy immune system knows the difference. There are many types of autoimmune diseases that affect joints, skin, thyroid, or the digestive tract, for example.
5 Underlying Causes of Autoimmune Disease
There is no known solution for autoimmune disease, though below we list a few ideas that may be at the root of your symptoms.
1. Leaky Gut
An unhealthy gut leads to a large variety of chronic conditions including autoimmune disease. A leaky gut is when your intestinal wall becomes looser and lets in unwanted particles into your bloodstream. This triggers your body and causes food intolerances and other symptoms. Healing your gut and nourishing your body with healthy foods is essential in overcoming your autoimmune disease.
Many people are sensitive to gluten without knowing it. Gluten has the capability to open up your gut lining and cause a high amount of inflammation. If you are experiencing an autoimmune disease, we strongly suggest eliminating gluten from your diet for now.
3. Toxin Overload
Toxins from food and cleaning products can cause autoimmune disease. These toxins weaken our body and lead to a weaker immune system. Organic foods and non-toxic cleaning products are key so your body is not overwhelmed. Supporting your body’s detoxification pathways is also important to ensure that the toxins are not continuously circulating throughout your body.
Bacterial and viral infections can take a serious toll on our wellness. If you are experiencing chronic fatigue or constant illness, test for an infection. Living with this chronic inflammation from infection can lead to autoimmune disease, so healing your infection is a necessary step to wellness.
5. Chronic Stress
Chronic stress can be detrimental to the body. Some of us are living with chronic stress as a baseline and our bodies do not know how to relax. This is a byproduct of the fast-paced culture we live in. Through breathing practices, meditation, movement, music, and gentle exercise, you can begin to relax and unwind your body and mind!
If you are looking to heal your autoimmune disease, it may be important to start by healing your gut. Eliminate any inflammatory and toxic foods, such as gluten, and restore your body with a nutrient-dense diet and good gut bacteria. You may also want to repair the gut with necessary amino acids like L-glutamine. You may want to test for heavy metals and mycotoxins to help reduce the toxic burn on your mind and body. You also may want to find and treat any bacterial or viral infections that may be contributing to your disease through a blood test. Finally, it is imperative that you reduce the amount of stress on your body through mindfulness and relaxation techniques.
While there aren’t great treatment options in the world of conventional medicine, there are a number of incredible programs led by Integrative Doctors that help guide you as you reverse a condition.
Wisdom Health runs a foundational health program that has excellent reviews. It’s led by 2 integrative doctors and gives you hands-on support as you address the underlying causes of autoimmunity.
We hope that you have found this article helpful. Let us know if you resonate or have discovered a different root cause of your autoimmune disease!